What to do after an auto accident
1. First and foremost, attend to any injuries as a result of the accident. You must contact the police if there are injuries. Each province or state has varying requirements as to when they must be contacted based on the cost of repairs exceeding a specific dollar amount. If in doubt contact the local police to determine your legal obligations. In Alberta, the new threshold is $2,000.
2. Obtain the names and contact information of any witnesses. If you have a camera available take photos of the vehicles and scene before moving them. If the vehicles are drivable and it is safe to do so, move them safely out of traffic.
3. Do not admit liability or discuss the accident with anyone at the accident scene other than the police. Complete a glove box Accident Claim Guide to collect the information your insurance company will need to assist you with your loss.
4. Contact us as soon as possible to report the claim so that we can assist you.
Safeguard any valuables by removing them if possible and locking the doors of your vehicle.
Contact a reputable tow truck service to assist you with removing your vehicle. Unless the police advise you otherwise, you have the choice of where you wish your vehicle towed. Do not let unscrupulous tow truck operators intimidate you into authorizing any repair work or taking it to their favourite shop. Some operators are paid cash to tow your vehicle to a given shop. Contact us if you wish. We can advise you how to proceed even if it is to tow your vehicle home while you take the time to collect your thoughts and make an informed choice on repairs.
If your vehicle is damaged:
If your vehicle is damaged, your professional adjuster or Claims Representative can assist you in finding a reputable repair firm.
Many insurers have Pre-Approved Auto body and Auto Repair facilities. However, it is fully your choice as to where you wish to have your vehicle repaired. The advantage of a Pre-Approved shop is that they are authorized by the insurance company to assist you with getting your vehicle back on the road sooner. In addition, the insurance company pre-screens the reputation and quality of workmanship performed. Most are required by the insurance company to offer guarantees of their work.
Auto Claim Guide
What To Do In The Event Of A Loss
We recognize that being involved in an accident or incident can be a traumatic experience. For most of us, it’s not something we deal with every day.
The thing you have to do first and foremost is – Contact us.
We will offer guidance and suggestions on how to proceed. We will assist you and initiate the claim for you with your insurance company.
After Hour Claims Contacts
The following is a listing of after-hours emergency claims numbers for our major insurers:
Aviva Canada 1-866-692-8482
Intact Insurance Company of Canada 1-866-464-2424
Elite – Aviva Elite 1-866-692-8482
Peace Hills General Insurance Company 1-800-369-4053
Portage LaPrairie Mutual Insurance Company 1-800-661-3625
Wawanesa Mutual Insurance Company
1-800-625-7891 – Northern Alberta or 1-800-372-9212 for Southern Alberta
The Adjuster’s Role
As your broker we forward the claims information you provide to your insurance company. The insurance company has professional staff (adjusters) designated to assist you with your loss. During the claims settlement process, your point of contact is your adjuster. The adjuster will give you their telephone number and a Claim file number so that they can work with you on the claim.
In most instances, if not immediate, your adjuster will contact you within 24 hours. In a catastrophe (e.g. Tornado), when high volumes of claims are received, each claim is prioritized and the most urgent cases are assisted first. During normal volumes same day service is the norm.
Once the claim has been sent to the insurance company and an adjuster has been assigned to your case, the claims settlement process can begin.
Most insurance companies have their own adjusters on staff – the staff adjuster. However, an adjuster can also be an independent, licensed professional hired by the insurance company to investigate a claim on its behalf. Independent adjusters typically specialize in a certain type of loss – for example, business income, liability or fire – and have expertise in settling those claims.
The adjuster is responsible for working with you to settle the claim as quickly as possible in order to return your life and property to normal. The adjuster will guide you on repairs to your vehicle or home.
If you don’t have a preference, most insurers are able to recommend contractors or suppliers to assist you with repairing or replacing your property. While the insurance company may recommend a supplier, you have the final say. Your insurer wants your claims settlement process to be smooth and we want you to be happy with the results. You can rest assured that any supplier they recommend has a track record of meeting the high levels of service and expectations from a large number of clients. If you have a preference tell your adjuster.
The huge majority of claims are settled without issue. Insurers are very concerned about their reputation and strive to satisfy you. However, occasionally you may have concerns or questions about the claims process.
We welcome the opportunity to act as your advocate if you feel you are not receiving the compensation you are entitled to under the policy. Frequently it comes down to communicating expectations fairly and evenly. Sometimes you just want to double check that you are receiving the right information. We are happy to review this with you. Having a broker on your side at the time of a loss is one of the primary benefits of working with us. We work for you!