Insurance Claims After an Accident: Understanding the Basics

Insurance Claims After an Accident

If you’ve ever been in an accident, you know the process of filing an insurance claim can be daunting.

Between dealing with the other driver’s insurance company and your own, it can feel like you’re swimming in paperwork and red tape. However, understanding how claims work can help make the process a little less confusing.

This article will give you a crash course on insurance claims following an accident. We’ll discuss the different types of coverages that may come into play, how to file insurance claims after an accident, and what you need to do if you have difficulty getting compensated.

So, let us get started.

What Is the Difference Between First Party Claims and Third-Party Claims?

Before we dive deep into the process of filing an insurance claim, let’s take a step back and understand the different types of claims you may encounter following an accident.

Generally, there are two kinds of claims that can arise from a car crash: first-party claims and third-party claims.

A first-party claim is filed with your own insurer regardless of who was responsible for the accident. These claims are typically filed to cover damages to your own vehicle or for injuries you sustained in the accident.

insurance claims after an accident

On the other hand, a third-party claim is filed with the other driver’s insurance company if they were at fault for the accident. This type of claim is filed to cover damages to your vehicle or injuries you sustained in the accident.

While first-party and third-party claims may seem similar, it’s essential to understand the critical differences between the two. This knowledge can come in handy when it is time to file a claim for your car accident.

Reporting an Accident to Your Insurance Company

The first step in the claims process is to notify your insurance company that an accident has occurred. You should do this as soon as possible. Fortunately, you can do so by calling your agent or the company’s claims department.

When you report the accident, you will be asked for basic information about the incident, such as the date, time, and location of the accident, as well as the names and contact information of all parties involved.

You will also be asked to briefly describe the accident and the extent of any property damage or injuries suffered.


Reporting an Accident to Your Insurance Company

It’s important to be honest when reporting an accident to your insurance company. If you’re found to have misled the company or provided false information, your claim could be denied.

Be sure to report the accident even if it wasn’t your fault. Many insurance policies require you to notify the company of any accidents that occur, regardless of who is at fault.

Filing a Claim with Your Insurance Company

Once you’ve reported the accident to your insurance company, it’s time to file a claim. The process for doing so will vary depending on your insurance company, but in general, you will need to provide the same information that you did when you first reported the accident.

You will also be asked to provide more detailed information about the accident, such as a police report or eyewitness statements. Once your claim is filed, an adjuster will be assigned to your case.

Minnesota car accidents

The adjuster’s job is to investigate the accident and determine how much your insurance company should pay for your damages. This process can take some time, so be patient.

If you’re not satisfied with the adjuster’s decision, you can always appeal the decision or negotiate a higher settlement.

Getting Your Claim Paid

Once the adjuster has made a decision on your claim, it’s time to get paid. If you’re lucky, your insurance company will simply write you a check equivalent to the amount of damages suffered.

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However, if your damages are more extensive, you may need to have your car repaired by an authorized repair shop. In this case, your insurance company will typically send you a check for the estimated cost of repairs, minus your deductible.

damages in a car accident claim

You will need to take the check to the repair shop and pay the deductible before repairs can begin.

Once your car is repaired, you will be responsible for any remaining balance. If your insurance company paid you more than the cost of repairs, you might be required to send them a refund.

Calculating the Value of Your Insurance Claim

While calculating lost wages and medical bills is fairly straightforward, it is difficult to place a dollar amount on non-economic damages such as pain and suffering.

There are a few different methods that adjusters use to calculate the value of pain and suffering damages. The most common method is to multiply your economic damages by a factor of 1.5 to 5, depending on how severe your injuries are.

For example, if you have $10,000 in medical bills and lost wages, your pain and suffering damages could be worth anywhere from $15,000 to $50,000.

Another common method is to use a per diem approach, which involves calculating the value of your pain and suffering damages by taking the number of days you spent in pain and multiplying it by a daily rate.

what is the value of your car insurance claim?

For example, if you were in pain for 30 days and the adjuster multiplied that by a daily rate of $100, your pain and suffering compensation will amount to $3,000.

The final method is to simply make a lump sum offer. This approach is very rare, but it does happen from time to time.

If you’re not sure how to calculate the value of your pain and suffering damages, it’s best to speak with an experienced car accident attorney.

An attorney will be able to help you determine the fair value of your claim and make sure that you are not taken advantage of by the insurance company.

Denial of Insurance Claims and the Appeals Process

An insurance company can deny your claim for several reasons. The most common reason for denial is that the insurance company does not believe you are entitled to coverage.

Other common reasons for denial include failure to cooperate with the insurance company, failure to provide enough evidence, and making a mistake on your insurance application.

If your claim is denied, you will receive a letter from the insurance company explaining why your claim was denied.

car insurance claim denied

The letter will also explain how to appeal the decision. The appeals process is usually pretty straightforward, but it can be time-consuming.

If you’re unsure how to navigate the appeals process, it’s best to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney.

An attorney will be able to review your denial letter and help you gather the evidence you need to prove that you are entitled to coverage.


If you’ve been injured in a car accident, it’s essential to understand the insurance claims process. The steps you take after an accident can significantly impact the amount of money you ultimately recover.

Be sure to cooperate with your insurance company, but don’t be afraid to ask for help if you need it. An experienced personal injury attorney can be a valuable ally during the insurance claims process.

The most important thing to remember is that you have rights and options after an accident, so don’t hesitate to assert them.

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