It is important to make any insurance claim as soon as possible following an accident. Many van insurance providers will have a hotline available for the policyholders to make claims 24 hours per day. The reason it is so important to make claims right away is to ensure the accuracy of the information given regarding the claim. Also, certain insurance companies do have a time limit for certain coverage if policyholders do not make claims immediately following an accident. These statutes usually only apply to damage to the vehicle and medical expenses related to the accident.
Information one needs to have available when making the claim starts with policy information. Usually the claims representative will verify the policy in terms of cover available, and they will also verify if the policy is paid in full. As long as this information is verified, the claim will proceed to the interview portion. At this time, the claims representative will ask the policyholder questions about the claim including date and time of the incident, synopsis of the incident, if other parties were involved, if there were witnesses, and if there were any injuries.
The claims representative will then give any advice or counsel about how to proceed from there. For instance, if there is any damage to the vehicle the policyholder can then take it to an approved garage for inspection and estimate (if the vehicle is able to be driven). Often if the vehicle is not drivable, the insurance company will arrange transport for the van to get to an appropriate repair facility. After the estimate is complete and the damage coincides with the details from the claim, the insurance company will have the garage proceed with repairs. The insurance company will compensate the garage for the services, less the excess covered by the policyholder.
The excess is an amount determined by the van insurance policy and level of cover. The policyholder must pay the excess when making a claim. These amounts usually differ depending on what kind of claim is being filed. For instance, damage to the body of the vehicle is usually more expensive than damage to windscreens. The more excess a policyholder pays, usually the less the monthly premiums are. The policyholder can also volunteer to pay more excess to avoid affecting the price of premiums paid in the future.
In cases where other parties are involved in the claim, there will usually be an investigation where the insurance company will gather information from the other parties and witnesses (if applicable) about the claim. If there is physical injury, the insurance company will work with the hospitals and compensate individuals for the amount specified by the terms and conditions of the insurance policy. If there are medical expenses greater than the amount covered by the insurance policy, the policyholder will be responsible for the remainder. This is why it is important to ensure that you have the proper level of cover for your needs and driving skills.
After all payments for damages and medical expenses are fulfilled, the claim is complete. The van insurance company will usually see the insurance claim as increased risk for their cover. This will usually cause increases in premiums and/or the excess due when making a claim. Usually by paying a larger excess than necessary, the policyholder will reduce the impact the claim will have on monthly premiums. Regardless of how claims will affect monthly premiums, the most important issue is a timely and accurate report to the insurance provider.