Amity Insurance & Financial Services

What to Expect When Filing a Claim

Oct 18, 2012

When you have been in an accident or your car has been stolen or vandalized, you may not know what to expect from your insurance company. While the details of the claims process may differ from company to company and depending on the type of claim, the basic process is similar.  This step-by-step guide will help you understand the claims process.

The First Step: Filing A Claim.  

Often times when people call their insurance agency to file a claim they are distracted by the recent event and can forget some of the details. Before calling, sit down and write out the details of what happened as best you can recall.  If you were able to take photos of the damage to your vehicle, have them on hand to use as a reference.  Your call to submit a claim might take a while, so be prepared to be on the phone with no distractions, and ready to answer all the necessary questions. For most companies the claims department is available 24/7.

The Second Step: Meeting The Adjuster

Depending on the type of claim and how your insurance company handles claims, you may need to meet with the assigned adjuster to view the damage to your car.  There may be more questions at this time regarding the incident, so keep your notes and photographs handy.  If there was a police report filed on the incident, the adjuster may wish to go over the details of the report with you.  In the case of a theft, you might also be asked for a list of what was taken from or off the vehicle.

The Third Step: Determining Fault And Value

After the adjuster has seen the damage, spoken with all parties, and reviewed the police report, a decision will be made as to who was at fault in the incident.  If it was not an accident, but a theft or vandalism, obviously no fault will be assigned.  At this point in an accident scenario, your adjuster will also be working with the adjuster for the other person involved in the accident.  If they agree on fault, the claim goes forward.  If not, mediation may occur.

Finally, a value will be assigned to the damage done to your vehicle, deciding how much it will cost to repair and how much the insurance company will pay.  If the cost to repair the car exceeds the value of the car, then a total loss may be declared.

Final Steps: Closing The Claim

In a straightforward claim, payment will be made, the car repaired, and the claim will be closed.  More complicated claims involving bodily injury or multiple drivers may take longer.  In most cases, however, the claims process is completed relatively swiftly.

Any questions? Call Amity Insurance & Financial Service's, we are here to help!

How do I make a claim?

You can contact your insurance company directly, or call our office for assistance.  Remember that you can always find the claim department contact information for your insurance company on our website at

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