Jessica Sautter is a Content Writer for CarInsuranceCompanies.com with a Bachelor’s Degree from Eastern Michigan University in Elementary Education with a Major in Reading and a Minor in Mathematics.

Full Bio →

Written by

Chris Harrigan has an economic degree from Limestone College and an MBA from Clemson University. He previously managed auto insurance claims for Enterprise Rent-A-Car. Currently, he is using his business and insurance expertise to provide insurance data analysis and visualizations to enhance the user experience.

Full Bio →

Reviewed by Chris Harrigan
Former Auto Insurance Claims Manager

UPDATED: Oct 12, 2020

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right car insurance coverage choices.

Advertiser Disclosure: We strive to help you make confident insurance decisions. Car insurance comparison shopping should be easy. We partner with top car insurance companies. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about auto insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything auto insurance related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by auto insurance experts.

Key takeaways...

  • A car insurance claim is essentially any request for payment of damages insured under a signed car insurance policy
  • Filing a claim is rather painless but the trick is understanding what items you are covered for well ahead of time
  • Whenever an accident occurs always try to file a claim as quickly as possible and never hesitate to call law enforcement at the scene of an accident no matter how minor the damage
  • It’s important never to speak to anyone unless they represent you and if you feel like your car insurance adjuster is difficult to work with, ask for another one
  • Never send your car to a repair shop before getting authorization from your car insurance company

car insurance claim is essentially any request for payment of damages insured under a signed car insurance policy.

While most car insurance claims are processed rather quickly other claims need a little work to get resolved. It’s very important to understand what your insurance policy covers before submitting a claim.

Use our FREE quote tool to compare auto insurance rates today!

Table of Contents

What signifies a minor incident car insurance?

Many times consumers often simply want their car fixed but incur other expenses such as rental car costs and loss of income which could be covered by an auto insurance policy.

Filing a claim is rather painless but the trick is understanding what items you are covered for well ahead of time. Compare car insurance companies and inquire how different providers process claims today

Compare quotes from the top car insurance companies and save

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

The Car Insurance Company Point of View

Although your car insurance policy entitles you to coverage for certain incidents the car insurance company is also entitled to investigate your claim to ensure the submitted claim complies with the terms of your insurance policy and is not an attempt at insurance fraud.

For most minor claims the car insurance company will simply send out a car insurance adjuster and quickly process the claim, such as a broken window.

However, more detailed claims involving medical injuries, loss of income and other reimbursements may involve a police report, several claims adjusters and a bit of a longer claims process.

How to make the Car Insurance Claim Process Smooth

It’s important to understand the car insurance company will generally be on your side however they are also a for-profit corporation so tread carefully when its comes to submitting a major claim and hire an independent auto insurance adjuster or attorney if you need to.

Most car insurance claims are processed quickly and without much conflict but larger car insurance claims can sometimes be a little tricky especially if you don’t understand the terms of your policy.

Compare Car Insurance Companies

Compare quotes from the top car insurance companies and save

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

What to Ask for in Insurance Claims that are Not Your Fault

If an accident is clearly not your fault, by record and not simply your opinion, or you live in a no-fault car insurance state then most likely you will only deal with a car insurance adjuster representing your policy coverage.

It’s important never to speak to anyone unless they represent you and if you feel like your car insurance adjuster is difficult to work with ask for another one.

You should also try to incorporate some of these tips for filing a successful car insurance claim including:

– Don’t Delay

Whenever an accident occurs always try to file a claim as quickly as possible and never hesitate to call law enforcement at the scene of an accident no matter how minor the damage.

It’s very common for drivers to change their story as soon they leave the scene and you should always have the accident documented by a police report.

– Never Speak to the Other Car Insurance Company

The only person you want to speak with is your auto insurance company or legal counsel. Do not fall prey to another car insurance company asking you questions.

You have no legal responsibility to speak with them and most of the time the questions are geared at trying to find a way to put you at fault.

– Wait for Authorization

Never send your car to a repair shop before getting authorization from your car insurance company. Your policy will only provide coverage up to the accident damage and any pre-existing damage is not covered.

When you tell a car repair shop to fix your car well, they are going to fix everything and your check may be very short of the actual repair cost.

Of course, you also have options to dispute a claim but most car insurance claims are settled pretty quickly today so try to make the process smooth but make every attempt to understand your car insurance policy well ahead of filing a claim.

Compare car insurance quotes online today!