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Accident Auto Insurance: What do I do in case of an accident if I am covered by auto insurance

Hopefully you will never be in an car accident, but chances are you will be in some sort of accident at some point in your driving career. If you are in fact in an accident, and are covered by auto insurance (which I highly recommend) here are the steps you should take:

  1. Your first concern is getting yourself in a safe position. If it is possible stop your car in a place that is both safe and visible. Your number one priority is getting yourself and the other passengers in your vehicle out of harms way. Next turn your car off, and carefully (make sure it is safe) exit the vehicle.
  2. Now you must assess the situation. Again the first concern is human safety. Was anyone injured in the accident? If so, do not move them; doing so can cause further damage and is best handled by professionals.
  3. Immediately call the police (911), tell them you've been in an accident, and report any injuries, giving them as many details as possible. The more details you give them regarding injuries, the better they will be able to help when they arrive on the scene.
  4. Now it's time for some administrative duties. If there was another vehicle involved in the accident immediately write down the following information: car's year, make, model, license plate number; other drivers name, address, license number, and their auto insurance provider. Also, write down the name and addresses of any other passengers or anyone who witnessed the accident. Obviously there is a lot of writing going on at this point, so be sure to have a small notepad and a writing utensil in an accessible place in your car at all times.
  5. Hopefully the police and other emergency personnel will arrive soon. When they do, be sure to record as many badge numbers as you can in case these people need to be contacted again in the future. Obviously, don't hinder rescue efforts in this process; human safety is always the number one priority in emergency situations.
  6. Do you suspect that the other driver could have been under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of the accident? Indications include swerving, weaving, or otherwise irradic behavior before the accident. If so, ask that you and the other driver both be given a breath test.
  7. DO NOT admit guilt in any way for the accident, that will be determined in a later investigation, but always cooperate with the police. If asked, show them your insurance, but never tell anyone how much coverage you have.
  8. DO NOT accept any money from anyone on the scene, as doing so may fore-fit your rights later on.
  9. DO NOT agree to disregard a minor accident. While it may seem like the polite thing to do at the time, you may come to find out that the damages are greater than first thought. The other driver could even file a lawsuit against you in the future.
  10. If you have a camera available, take pictures of the accident, both cars, the other driver and passengers, and any other aspects of the accident you deem relevant. If no camera is available, try write down as many details as you can including the condition of all other people involved in the accident, damage cause by the accident, and damage that was clearly there prior to the accident.
  11. As soon as you can, report the accident to your auto insurance agent, who will promptly open a new case and start an investigation.

Hopefully you never need this information, but if you do, it is handy to keep a copy of it in your car. Make sure your auto insurance is always up to date and in effect. It is helpful to shop around for auto insurance quotes, to make sure you are getting the most for your money. By getting auto insurance quotes from a number of companies you will be able to maximize your coverage.