The driver who crashed into your car is responsible for reporting the accident to his or her car insurance company. But of course motorists who cause accidents are sometimes reluctant to report them. Therefore make sure you get all their details so you can report everything to your insurer and the police.
However, you’ll need to make sure you contact your insurer with all relevant information pertaining to the accident as well. If you don’t report it to your insurer within the prescribed period, you may not be able to claim. Even if the accident was not your fault or the damage to your car was negligible.
Here’s what to do when a car accident is not your fault in 8 easy steps.
- Get the driver’s full information from telephone to their ID number and insurance details.
- Get vehicle details from colour of the car to the make of the vehicle, model and registration number. Check the registration number against the licence disc just in case.
- Take pictures with your phone of the vehicles positions at the accident scene. This will help because they can be used to claim back money from the other party’s insurance.
- Use the eye witnesses instead of getting annoyed with the spectators, try to get their names and contact information, as this may be useful later.
- Try to notify all relevant parties of the accident within 24 hours. This includes your insurer, the police and the other party’s insurance company. If they don’t have insurance, your insurer will attempt to claim from them directly. But don’t worry you’ll still be paid out if you abide by your insurer’s terms and conditions.
- The police will determine who’s at fault for ticketing purposes, but they may not even issue a ticket. The insurer will make its own determination of fault, which may or may not match the police report.
- Try to avoid saying anything that could jeopardise your claim; the less you say the better, stick to conversations about insurance details.
- Never go ahead with repairs on your own; the insurance company will ask you to submit three quotes or may refer you to one of their approved panel beaters. Also make sure that that the insurer has accepted liability before going ahead with repairs. Get that authorisation in writing, and ask the insurer or your broker to email you the confirmation.