Everyone has a right to expect a smooth process when they claim on an insurance policy, whether it be for car, home or travel insurance – but, inevitably, this is not always the case. In fact, investigations into complaints about insurance products stretch to thousands a year, suggesting that everything is not always done as competently and smoothly as you would wish. However, ensuring you – as a policyholder – are organized, you can minimize the chances of something going wrong, and in the worst circumstances can help back up your case against the company.
With millions of cars on Britain’s roads, it’s perhaps no surprise that car insurance is often one of the areas in which customers experience a significant number of problems. As accidents can involve legal implications, it’s important that you do the right thing if you do have a bump, whether it was your fault or not.
For a start, remember to call the emergency services on 999 if anyone has been hurt or if the incident itself is causing a danger to other drivers. It may also be advisable not to admit any liability for what has happened or to offer compensation, such as saying “I’ll pay for it” if you cause damage. At the same time, if the other party does, inform your car insurance company.
It could also be helpful to get the details of any witnesses and those involved, and remember that the other driver has to give you their car insurance policy details by law. Most people now carry a mobile phone with them which has a camera, so you could take a picture of any of the vehicles, potentially useful evidence if the other driver tries to blame you.
You may even want to draw the incident on a piece of paper, recording the positions of vehicles, just after it has happened and before it all disappears from memory – and remember to tell your insurance company as soon as possible about the accident.
Home insurance is a little different, and thankfully often a little more straightforward than some car insurance claims. If something does happen, like a flood due to faulty plumbing, you could try calling your home insurance company before calling a plumber. They may have a list of emergency companies that can help you out more quickly. Also, you could check your policy to see if emergency call-outs come as standard and will not be for an extra fee.
You should always follow your insurer’s instructions clearly, to ensure your claim is processed successfully. Also, you might want to record any damage done by an accident or faulty plumbing by taking photographs. It is also possibly a good idea to keep any receipts for particularly expensive items, as your insurer may ask for proof.
Many people manage to go on holiday without having to claim on their travel insurance, but if you do have to, there are things you can do to make sure it’ll go smoothly. For a start it’s important to check that you’re covered for any problems which may arise from a pre-existing medical condition or for something you are taking medicines for. Check carefully with your insurance provider before you leave.
If you do have to seek medical advice while away, try keeping records of what you are charged for, where you went for it, and all the other costs. It can also pay to keep in touch with your insurer throughout your treatment while abroad.