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What to provide your agent when making a car insurance claim

After a motor vehicle accident, your immediate attention should turn to your injuries, treatment and prognosis. When you're able to do so, such as after your discharge from the hospital, contact your insurance agent to file a claim.

At this point, you'll need to provide your agent with the following information:

  • Who was driving your vehicle
  • Which vehicle was involved in the accident (if you have more than one on your policy)
  • The time of the accident
  • The location of the accident
  • The insurance information of the other driver(s)
  • Contact information of any witnesses

Along with the above, you'll want to provide a basic idea of what happened. It's critical that you don't say too much, as you never want to give off the impression that you were at-fault.

Also, you can share basic details regarding the damage to your vehicle and your injuries.

As you discuss the accident, write down the next steps in the process and your claim number. Should your agent ask you any questions you don't understand or are uncomfortable answering, explain this to them. You're under no obligation to answer questions or provide a recorded statement.

The steps you take when making a car insurance claim will impact what happens next. If you stick to the basics and avoid saying too much, you position yourself to obtain all the compensation you deserve. It may not be easy moving forward, but you haven't done anything that will work against you.

Your insurance company may give you a low-ball offer, so think twice before accepting it. You want to hold out for the compensation you're owed as outlined in your policy.

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