Whether you were in a minor fender bender or a major crash, you will likely feel rattled after an accident. Try to settle your nerves, as it can be difficult to determine the next steps to take and how to handle the collision repair process when you’re overwhelmed. Restore your vehicle to its prewreck condition as soon as possible by reviewing the following tasks to perform and mistakes to avoid.
Call your auto insurer.
After you pull over and call 911 for medical attention, the next call you should make is to your auto insurance company. The longer you wait to reach out, the harder it can be to prove any vehicle damage was caused by the collision.
A representative can start the claims process while you’re on the phone at the scene. They’ll also tell you what evidence to gather before you leave, such as the insurance details of the other involved motorists, pictures of all cars, and the road conditions. This information will need to be included in your claim paperwork.
Find a reliable auto body shop.
In the days following the accident, start looking for an auto body shop to perform collision repair. You can turn to online testimonials and referrals from friends and family members to find a reputable company in your area.
Schedule an appointment so the technicians can assess the car’s damage. They can provide an itemized list of the issues, as well as the repair cost for each. You can include this with your insurance claim to show the lender that the value of the damage surpasses the deductible.
Even if you think the accident may have been your fault, do not apologize to the other motorists involved. They could take this back to their coverage provider as proof that you should be held responsible for repairs and other expenses.
Additionally, negotiating a settlement with the other driver’s auto insurer is a task best suited for your auto accident attorney. A lawyer is familiar with tactics companies use to try to reduce claim payouts. When you speak directly to an agent, you run the risk of admitting fault, which could affect how much money you get to cover collision repairs.
Settle for old replacement parts.
Refer to your insurance policy to determine whether aftermarket or original equipment manufacturer (OEM) parts are included with repairs. When possible, try to avoid aftermarket parts, as the equipment may not have been made for your specific make and model. Using parts made by your vehicle’s manufacturer reduces the risk of experiencing problems later.
Trust the collision repair technicians at Consolidated Bodyshop in Crossville, TN, to fix your vehicle after an accident. Their knowledgeable technicians are comfortable handling the insurance claims process on behalf of their customers. They also perform auto painting, paintless dent repair, and additional solutions to restore the value and safety of each vehicle. Learn more about the services they provide online, and call (931) 456-4090 to request an estimate.