Anybody who has been ever involved in an auto accident knows the great role that auto insurance plays in solving injury and property claims stemming from that accident. From the start to the end of your auto accident claim, the insurance coverage almost always will be a part of equation. This post addresses how insurance affects an auto accident claim.
Who Should Have Auto Insurance?
You should have an insurance policy if you drive any automobile. Most states have a requisite minimum insurance amount that every driver should maintain to lawfully operate or register an automobile. The amount of coverage in any state minimum policy differs, but is usually what they sound as: minimal exactly. The kind of insurance that you carry and the kind that other involved drivers in your auto accident carry, has real and direct impact on your capability to recover for all your medical bills and property loss.
At-Fault Driver Policy
At the scene of the auto accident, you have to get information about all the other involved drivers in the auto accident. It means you must gather names, phone numbers, addresses, and insurance information like the policyholder name, policy number, etc. Report the accident immediately to your insurance company too.
The responsible driver and his insurance company will be accountable for covering the cost of property damages and repairs and often car rental as well. Additionally, the insurer is responsible for compensating for your injuries that you sustained due to the auto accident.
Often the claim’s agent will request you to give a recorded statement about the accident. You aren’t obligated to do this and may wish to take the advice of any auto accident attorney before getting engaged in any lengthy conversation with insurance company.
Do not be surprised if claim’s agent asks you for providing medical authorization to obtain the copies of all your medical bills and records. You can and must refuse to give these authorizations. In its place, tell the claim adjuster that after you’ve reached maximum improvement and completed treating your injury, you will give a copy of the relevant bills and records as a part of settlement demand.
How Your Auto Insurance Policy Can Affect Your Auto Accident Case
If somebody else causes your auto accident, why it matters as to what kind of insurance you have? Unfortunately, in spite of legal requirements that every driver buys and keep the car insurance, not everybody complies.
If you’re hit by an individual without insurance or someone with policy which is inadequate to cover all your losses, you’ll have to rely completely on your insurance coverage to assist you recoup all your losses. Most of the insurance policies have “underinsured/uninsured motorist” provision which offers you with insurance cover if the driver with no or little insurance struck you.
If you’re involved in an auto accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver, you’ll work with your insurance company to get a settlement for your property damages and personal injuries.
As you have an agreement with your own insurance company, company owes you the duty to act quickly in “good faith” to negotiate with you and settle your auto accident claim. If the insurance company is reluctant to compensate you adequately, you can file a suit against your insurers for bad faith and breach of contract. Many insurers wish to avoid bad faith claim due to the possible financial hit — court awards “triple damages” in lots of states if the plaintiff is victorious in the bad faith claim. But, due to the contractual relationships, you’ve certain obligations also towards your insurance company that can affect whether or not you receive compensation.