Getting into a car accident is a frightening event. It is common to have questions about the expense and the impact of the accident, regardless of who was at fault. Some may figure insurance will just cover it all while others worry that their insurance coverage may not be enough. The exact situation will vary based on the details of each case, but some basic answers to more common questions are addressed below.
Should I tell my insurance company about the accident?
Likely yes, you should reach out to your insurance provider and let them know about the accident. There is often a portion within the insurance policy that states the policy holder should reach out and tell the insurance company about an accident as soon as possible. A failure to do so could have a negative impact on your coverage.
What information should I give my insurance company?
Have basic information ready. They will need to know about the details of the accident, such as location, time of day, whether it was busy or not and what the weather and road conditions were like. Be prepared to provide the name, contact information and insurance information of the other driver.
If injured, it is a good idea to ask the insurance company how they will handle the cost of treatment.
What about the other driver’s insurance company? Should I talk to them, too?
The other insurance company is looking out for themselves and may push you into an agreement that is not in your interest. As such, it is generally best to leave these conversations to those who will look out for your interests like your insurance provider or legal counsel.
What will the insurance company do next?
Once they have the basic information, they will likely begin an investigation to determine fault. In West Virginia, comparative negligence applies. This means that if the investigation shows you more than half responsible for the accident, you will not recoup expenses from the crash. You would end up having to pay for your won medical expenses and repair costs for the vehicle.
The result of the investigation will be used to determine whether or not and the amount of payment you get from your insurance company.