How Car Insurance Companies Investigate Claims

| August 08, 2017

A car accident can happen in the blink of an eye. In the event of an accident you might have to contend with damages to your own vehicle. You also likely have to consider how the accident impacted other drivers or property. Therefore, the circumstances that caused the accident can be confusing.

Following an accident, most drivers turn to their car insurance to seek assistance repairing damages. If you file a claim for funds from your auto insurance, you can expect your insurance company to ask questions regarding the accident. The company will likely need to follow a number of steps before it issues a payout for your insurance claim. This process will likely include determining fault in the accident, and then appraising the damages.

Determining Fault

During a claims process, an auto insurer will need to conduct an investigation to determine who is at fault in the accident. Different states have different laws to determine who is at fault. The fault generally either lies with the policyholder, or with another driver who was involved in the accident. However, some definitions of fault assign blame to all parties involved in the accident. Since every accident scenario is different, assigning blame is a complicated process.

If an accident was your fault, then your insurance typically will be the policy responsible for paying for damage repairs or medical bills of those involved. If another driver was at fault, then you can likely use their insurance to file these claims.

However, some states are no-fault­ states. This means that after an accident, drivers can use their own insurance policy to meet liability claims, like medical payments.

Conducting an Investigation

When you file an auto insurance claim, most car insurance companies conduct investigations to determine how to assign blame and apply your insurance benefits. Different insurance companies will follow different processes to investigate claims. These might include:

  • Instructing the affected driver to photograph the damages before they move the vehicle from the scene of the accident.
  • Requesting a police report and statements from all parties involved in the accident. They might also request statements from witnesses in the accident and law enforcement.
  • Asking for your medical records. If you submit an injury claim, an insurer might ask for relevant information about your treatment and diagnoses.
  • Sending an insurance adjuster to inspect the damages to the vehicle or property. The adjuster will inspect the damages, and then estimate how much money it will take to repair the damages.

After an investigation, and insurance adjuster will determine how to assign blame for the claim. They will then determine how to issue payment for your claim. You likely have a recourse to dispute a claim, if you choose.

We’ve got you covered. Pfenninger, Claxton, & Estelle Insurance Group can help you get a Muncie IN car insurance policy to meet your needs. Call us at 317.398.9797 for more information.

NOTICE: This blog and website are made available by the publisher for educational and informational purposes only. It is not be used as a substitute for competent insurance, legal, or tax advice from a licensed professional in your state. By using this blog site you understand that there is no broker client relationship between you and the blog and website publisher.