April 27, 2011

How Car Insurance Pays For A Damaged Interior

A car insurance claim for a damaged interior can seem difficult when dealing with the insurance company, but once the car owner understands how the process works, the claim can move forward more easily.

First, car owners should have both comprehensive and collision coverage on their cars. Comprehensive insurance would include a car insurance claim for a damaged interior, including theft or vandalism. Collision insurance pays for a damaged interior from a collision.

Vehicle owners should know what their insurance covers, and what the coverage limits are. Keep insurance papers in a safe place. Then, if the vehicle's interior is damaged by a covered incident, vehicle owners can report it right away, knowing the details of their policy.

Take pictures of the damaged vehicle interior. Also, contact the police and file a police report. This step is often required by the insurance companies before a claim can move forward, especially in the event of theft or vandalism.

Have a mechanic assess the damage. The insurance company will have its own mechanic look at the car, but it is best for vehicle owners to have their own assessments. Ask for written estimates for all missing parts or damage. Then any differences with the insurance company can be discussed, and the vehicle owner will have their own proof.

Learn the value of your vehicle. Kelley Blue Book is a top source of information for vehicles of all makes and models.

An insurance adjustor will have to come out or the vehicle's owner will have to drive the vehicle to the insurance adjustor, if not precluded by the damaged interior, before any check can be paid. Ask the adjustor plenty of questions about the car insurance claim. Show the adjustor the police report and photographs and be sure to inspect the damage along with the insurance adjustor. However, if the interior damage is covered by the car owner's insurance, the insurance company is likely to pay.

Payment depends upon the insurance adjustor's inspection of the vehicle's damaged interior. They will take into account the age of the vehicle and the condition of the vehicle interior before the damage, if it can be determined, among other factors. After the insurance adjustor has inspected the damaged interior, he or she will report back to the insurance company. Car owners should get payment in about a week.

Conditions under which most insurance companies will not pay for a damaged interior include when the damage occurs due to a natural disaster, when the vehicle owner damages their own vehicle interior on purpose, or damage to the interior that occurs if the vehicle is used in a crime by the vehicle owner.