All the perks of a car insurance policy are negated when a claim is thwarted and rejected. Unfortunately, “claim rejected” and “claim denied” are commonly stamped phrases during a claim process.
While many car insurance companies have genuine reasons to reject a car insurance claim, it is the duty of the one filing for the claim to ensure certain necessary steps in order to get appropriate benefits without any hiccups throughout the process.
Although claim filing and getting duly compensated is a harrowing task, here are a few ways to avoid claim rejections and make it worth your time.
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How to avoid a car insurance claim rejection
- Take photographs after the accident: Accidents can be quite unfortunate and are a traumatic experience. However, one should maintain composure and take photographs after the accident to maintain as proof for insurance claims. This would serve as irrefutable evidence and will surely lower, if not extinguish the chances of car insurance claim rejection.
- Call the insurance company to intimate the claim at the earliest: Insurance companies follow a strict procedure if a consumer wants to file for an insurance claim, it should be done as soon as possible. The company may not consider your application if you simply forgot to raise a claim.
- Filling the claim form: Form filling is the first step in a car insurance claim. It is extremely important to fill this form with care as any incomplete information can lead to claim rejected or claim denied. Insurance companies also insist on their customers to fill in the right information as any discrepancies can also lead to rejection.
- Importance of documents: Documents related to your car as well as the accident are very crucial. If you fail to produce relevant receipts, documents at the time of filing claim, there is a strong possibility that your claim may be rejected by the insurance company.
- Read the Policy Terms and Conditions carefully: All car insurance companies provide multiple pages of manuals that guide customers through the car insurance claim process and how to claim car insurance. Unfortunately, most users fail to understand the importance of such documents and ignore them completely. These Terms and Conditions contain important instructions and Dos and Don’ts that can guide consumers extensively.
- Declare All Modifications: Many car owners tend to add accessories to their insured cars or indulge in modifications, all without notifying the insurance companies about it. If any such accessories or modifications are related to your car damage in any way, they become sure shot reasons for claim rejected or claim denied by the insurance companies.
- Avoid Consequential Loss: The biggest mistake owners of insured cars make is when they aggravate the damages done to their vehicle by driving or using the vehicle that has been damaged once. This additional damage incurred by the vehicle on being driven even after it is in a damaged condition is known as consequential damage and its cost is not covered by insurance companies as they put the case under claim rejected or claim denied due to avoidable damage.
Also Read: What to do when your car has flooded?
Why is my car insurance claim rejected?
There can be a myriad of reasons for a rejected car claim. To start with, it can be as trivial as certain insurance policy conditions that are not met at the time of commencement of insurance. Rejection can also be due to intentional damage or a fake claim.
Here are 6 most common reasons, your claims can get rejected:
- Driving without a license: This is the most obvious reason for an insurance claim rejection. No insurance company will honour a claim raised if the vehicle involved in a car accident was driven by a person without a valid or no driving license.
- Drunk/Intoxicated driving: If during an investigation of the claim, it is found that the party involved was under the influence of alcohol, the insurance company reserves the right to reject the claim
- Insurance policy not in your name: This is very particular for second-hand car owners. If a claim is raised and it is found that the insurance policy stands issued in the name of the previous owner albeit the vehicle was being driven by the new owner, the claim will be rejected
- Delay in filing the claim: another very common reason why a claim is rejected. Insurance companies allow a period of 24 hours to 48 hours to file a claim. If the concerned continues driving the car, the insurance company can reject the claim.
- Non-intentional use of the vehicle: If the vehicle insured is used any other purposes beyond its limitations, other than what it is intended to do, the insurance company can reject the claim
- Non-permitted accessories: If the car insured has any accessories, which are not covered or conflict with the insurance policy, you can face claims rejection.
What do I do, if my car insurance is rejected?
Getting your car insurance rejected is an unfortunate incident and here are a few things one can do in such cases:
- Do your research: Understand why the insurance company rejected your claim and on what grounds. Your claims might not be covered in the Terms and Conditions booklet or might have been wrongly rejected. In both cases, a thorough case study is the best way to start.
- Contact your insurance company: Inquire about the reasons for rejection. It might be due to a fault at their end. Even if there are low chances of success, conversing with the concerned authority would not do you any bad.
- Get an independent assessment: Know the exact reason for rejection. Getting a second opinion can lead to better satisfaction.
- Seek legal advice: File a case against the insurance company if you feel cheated. The court is unbiased in its verdict and will surely do justice as long as all the facts are proven to be true and you have enough evidence to support your claims.
Is there a time limit to claim car insurance?
The time limit to claim car insurance is usually between 24-48 hours, however, this varies as per the policy contract, region (country) and type of claim. Moreover, it is strongly advised that one files for a claim as soon as possible to avoid rejection.2