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Oct 14, 2023

Timely Registration of First Accident Report by Police: Motor Accident Claims

When a vehicle insurance policyholder raises a claim, especially in cases of accidents, they expect it to be resolved quickly. After all, an accident may involve harm to property, vehicles or even injury to individuals. In very unfortunate cases, someone might pass away as well. In such situations, the sooner the claim is settled, and the financial compensation is paid out, the better it can be. However, sometimes, the motor insurance claim process can take a long time, especially when legal aspects are involved. Hence, to ease and fasten the process for policyholders, the Supreme Court of India recently issued certain directions in that regard. Let’s learn more about the same.

A Brief Overview of SC Directions for Faster Claim Settlement [1]

In a recent decision, the Supreme Court issued certain directions for immediate registration of the First Accident Report after an accident involving motor vehicles has occurred. The Supreme Court of India has also emphasised the importance of the Investigating Officer in the motor insurance claim process, especially the need for them to comply with the rules and regulations of the Motor Vehicles Act. In that context, the Supreme Court also directed relevant officials from every State/ Union territory to form a unit specialised in this section in every police station. Directions were issued to post trained personnel at these police stations as well. To make sure that the compliances mentioned in the Motor Vehicles Act are met at the earliest, the SC bench also laid down three months (from the date of the order) as the deadline for the development of these guidelines. Further directions were also issued, requesting general insurance companies to comply with the amended mandates and rules. While these directions would be implemented gradually, there are some steps you can take as a policyholder to make sure your motor insurance claims get processed faster.

How to Ease Your Motor Insurance Claims Process

The following points may not only help you quicken your vehicle insurance claim settlement but may also help increase the chances of your claim being approved.

-  Choose the right insurance company

A large part of how your claim settlement process goes depends on the insurance company. Hence, it is crucial to choose an insurance company supportive in this regard. Check whether the insurer has a 24/7 claims assistance service and a good customer service record in general. You can read reviews and testimonials on the insurer’s website or on the app store to get a realistic view of the same. Another thing to look out for in this aspect is the claim settlement ratio. It is a ratio denoting the number of claims settled by the insurer in comparison to the number of claims received by them. A higher claim settlement ratio may mean the insurer is dedicated to solving the customer’s claims. *

-  Provide accurate information

If you want to make sure that your motor insurance claims process goes smoothly and quickly, it may be ideal to provide accurate information about your vehicle to the insurer. This could refer to details regarding your driving history as well as any relevant data about the vehicle. If you have had any modifications carried out on the car, then it is important to let the insurer know of that. Also, be honest if you have flouted any traffic rules during the claim event. These bits of information can sometimes affect your risk profile, and hence, are relevant to the insurer. If you hide or misrepresent any information and the insurer finds out about the same, your claim may be rejected.

-  Pay premiums on time

It is the premium that keeps your motor insurance coverage running. If you do not pay the premium on time, you risk allowing the insurance policy to lapse. Usually, insurers provide a grace period to the insurer after the premium payment date has gone by. It is crucial that you pay the premium on time. A claim raised on a policy whose premiums have not been paid will not be approved. Before buying the policy, you can use a motor insurance calculator to get premium estimates so that they may be affordable to you in the long run.

-  Provide supporting evidence

Sometimes, motor accident claims may get stuck at the legal end due to a lack of supporting evidence. Hence, when a motor accident occurs involving your car, you should try to take as many pieces of evidence as you can. Take photographs, videos, and recordings, if possible, to fasten the process. Motor insurance claims can take different amounts of time to be settled entirely, depending on the complexity of the claim. Make sure you know the claim settlement process and the nuances laid out in the policy wordings before you sign the policy proposal.   * Standard T&C apply. Insurance is the subject matter of solicitation. For more details on benefits, exclusions, limitations, terms, and conditions, please read the sales brochure/policy wording carefully before concluding a sale.

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