Filing Auto Insurance Claims
How you make an auto insurance claim has a lot to do with the compensations that you receive. It is best to contact an experienced attorney to ensure the maximum compensation, like those at Scott W. Sheen and Associates.
- Contact an attorney to discuss your options
- Immediately notify your insurance company of an accident or vehicle theft or damage.
- Photograph the auto accident, vehicle damage, or personal injuries
- Keep receipts for anything related to your auto accident. This can include medical bills, car rentals, auto repairs, etc.
- Take notes of the names, job titles, dates and times from conversations with auto insurance representatives. Be sure to record what was discussed.
- Be honest with your insurance company. This increases your chances of receiving the highest compensation possible.
- Review your insurance policy; know what is covered and what is not covered.
- Check out your auto, homeowners, or other insurance policies to determine whether anything you may not have thought of will cover the damages incurred.
- If you haven’t completely paid for your vehicle (loan, lease, or buy), know how much you owe and how much you have paid. If you owe more than the current cash value of your vehicle and it has been totaled, car insurance will not pay more than the current cash value. Gap coverage will usually cover the difference, but know your auto insurance policy.
Do not do the following:
- Don’t immediately accept an insurance company’s estimate for your losses and damages. Contact an attorney, and research the matter yourself to ensure you receive the best compensation possible.
- It is important to make sure you understand your insurance policies and have determined the best choice for your family before you commit to anything in writing with your insurance company. Your best option is to contact an experienced attorney, like those at at Scott W. Sheen and Associates to discuss your options.
If You’re in an Accident…
At the Scene…
- In most states, it is a crime to leave the scene of a vehicle accident. If you were involved in the accident, pull over to the side of the road.
- If you have passengers, see if any of them are injured. If other vehicles were involved, determine if any of their passengers were injured. If so, call an ambulance. Do not try to move an injured person.
- To prevent further injury, put out road flares, turn on your hazard lights, and make your vehicle visible to others.
- Call the police. Some states require this by law, but the police can determine whether or not they need to be there.
- Exchange information with the other driver. This includes:
- Phone number
- License plate number
- Drivers license number
- Auto insurance information
- Do NOT admit fault. This will be determined later and can affect your insurance claims.
- Do NOT accept offers by the other driver or insurance companies at this time.
- Try and get information from anyone who witnessed the accident.
- Make notes of what happened, how the accident occurred, weather conditions, your speed, etc.
- When the police arrive, cooperate, provide them with information, and be honest, but do not admit fault or blame others. It can be helpful to have the business cards of the police officers who come to the scene, and to ask for the incident number, so that you can look up who was there and what was recorded. This can also help your insurance company.
- When the police tell you it is okay to leave the scene, you may.
After the Accident…
- If you have any pain, it is best to see a doctor and keep a record of it. An injury that may not seem serious at first can often change, and it is very helpful with insurance claims if there is a clear record of the progression of injuries. An insurance company can argue that by not seeing a doctor and therefore they are not responsible for the medical costs.
- Contact an attorney. It is best not to accept any money from insurance or other drivers before contacting an attorney, and to bring all records of the accident and money spent due to the accident to your lawyer.
The experienced attorneys at Scott W. Sheen and Associates, P.C. will help you sort through your information and determine the best way to work with your insurance company.
We offer free office, home and hospital appointments. We do not charge attorneys fee’s unless we collect on your behalf a settlement or judgment in Court. Our fee is based on a contingency fee or percentage fee of the recovery, no money up front needed.
Contact our office today to discuss your personal injury case with a lawyer. We are available during regular business hours and by appointment evenings and weekends. You can reach us by phone at (630) 443-6200, 1 866 NO WORRY (669-6779), our Contact Form at the right or via email at email@example.com.
We serve Kane, DuPage, Cook, Kendall, DeKalb, Boone, Winnebago and Will Counties.