Auto Accident Claims Process
Following each step of the claims process below will best position you for the fastest and cleanest experience. Other important information regarding renting a vehicle and a potential surcharge is also below. Remember, throughout the claims process, should you have any questions or concerns, we are here for you!
Report Your Claim
The first step is to report the claim to your insurance company.
- Provide claim details.
- Obtain the adjuster’s name, contact information, and claim number.
- Confirm whether you have coverage for a rental as well as what amount per day and for how many days.
- If you are not the driver, be prepared to provide the driver’s contact info as the adjuster will need to speak with the driver directly.
Complete an Accident Report
You should also complete an accident report. The Massachusetts form can be found here: Motor Vehicle Crash Operator Report. Please contact Aronson to obtain a form for a different state.
This should be filed within 5 working days to:
- Aronson Insurance or your insurance company adjuster
- If the damage was over $1,000 or if there is an injury, you should also provide to:
- The Police Department in the town where the accident occurred
- The Registry of Motor Vehicles
Have Your Car Appraised, Choosing a Body Shop, and Paying for Damages
Your car must be seen before repairs begin!
- If you have not spoken with us yet, determine the best method to obtain the appraisal for your situation. Not all incidents have the same options.
- You may drive it to a shop or drive-in center.
- You may need someone to come out to the vehicle.
- In some cases, you may simply be able to upload photos.
- Also obtain a list of preferred body shops from the adjuster. Using a preferred shop typically makes the process easier.
- If you have a body shop you’d like to use, speak with your adjuster about using this shop.
- Completing a “Direction to Pay” will allow the insurance company to pay the body shop directly (minus any applicable deductible)
Depending on your situation, further paperwork such as a Repair Certification Form or obtaining a Re-Inspection may need to be done. You will be notified by the adjuster of any additional steps.
Obtaining a Rental
If you have rental coverage, the insurance company will pay the policy limit per day per the number of days the appraisal estimated it would take to fix your car (allowance for supplements will be taken into consideration) up to the policy maximum.
Your claim adjuster can set up a rental for you and most rental companies will bill the insurance company directly. You are responsible for tax, gas, fees, and your deductible waiver should you decide to obtain.
Your auto policy would continue to cover you in the rental vehicle but you may be responsible for items your policy does not cover such as loss of use, administrative fees, the policy deductible, and/or diminished value.
Determining A Surcharge
You may be subject to a surcharge on your personal auto insurance policy if it is determined that you are more than 50% at-fault for an accident and the claim payout is more than $1,000 under Property Damage, Collision or Bodily Injury. The surcharge may remain on your policy for up to 6 years.
If you are going to be surcharged, you will receive a Surcharge Notice after the claim has been paid. If you feel you were not more than 50% at-fault for the accident, you may appeal the surcharge by following the instructions on the back of the Surcharge Notice.
We know that auto insurance claims can be difficult to manage. It is our goal to assist you through the process. Please call us if there are any unnecessary delays or if you have any questions.
*Please call us immediately if your car is declared a TOTAL LOSS*