As much as we would like to avoid being in this situation, accidents do happen. And as the saying goes, it’s better to be prepared than to find yourself scrambling for information / help when you need it most.
Here are 7 things you should do if you do find yourself in a car accident (touch wood!).
- Knowing the basic details of the other party is crucial. Obtain the names of the people involved, their addresses and contact numbers as the first step.
- Next, keep note of their vehicle registration number(s), as well as the make and type of vehicle and all the little specifics.
- Request for the details of the other person’s insurance company, including the policy or certificate number. If he / she does not have it handy, make a note to follow up later.
- Keep records of independent witnesses (if there are any) by taking down their names, addresses and contact details. They could help resolve any future dispute.
- Make a police report. In Malaysia, you are required by law to inform the police within 24 hours of a road accident.
- Inform your insurance company in writing as soon as possible. Failure to do this may result in you being liable for any losses, including third party claims against you. Even if you and the other party do not wish to make a claim on the accident, you should inform your insurers as soon as possible, as this is one of the conditions in your policy.
- Depending on the severity of the accident, you may have to send your car to a relevant panel workshop approved by your insurance company. Most insurance companies have their complete list of panel workshops on their websites. Note that if you fail to send your car to an approved workshop, you may not be able to claim from your insurer any damages from the accident.
Once the accident has been reported and your vehicle has been towed to the nearest approved workshop or police station, your insurance company will send a loss adjuster. A loss adjuster is someone who assesses the damage done to your vehicle and is responsible in finding out the true cause of the accident. The loss adjuster ultimately advises the insurance company how much you could claim as damages from the accident.
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