How to protect your assets in the event of a car accident?: – A car accident is an unfortunate incident which no matter how much you take precaution may happen. Not necessarily, the car owner can always be at fault. It can be the fault of other circumstances as well which can cause a car accident.
It is always risky and can lead to unpleasant consequences. A drunk driver, the unexpected appearance of a pedestrian on the roadway in an unspecified place can cause an accident. Such an event is a source for stress, tension, and unwanted expenses especially fro the culprit.
The accident not only injures both the victim and the car owner, but it also causes damage to the public property, damage to the car itself, damage to the other vehicles.
In short, you and the other party during the involvement in car accidents suffer from physical damage, property damage, emotional trauma the impact of which can remain for the rest of the life. It can alter the rest of your life if it causes serious injuries that are not finished healing.
This can keep you away from work for a long period and, in some cases, you may not even be able to return to paid employment. Salaries that you no longer receive significant medical and rehabilitation expenses can leave you in financial ruin.
Therefore, at the time of a car accident, you need to protect yourself, you need to care for the victim and you need to take care of the protection of your possession and assets so the expenses can be minimized as much as possible.
Types of damages in a car accident
Car accidents can be the cause of physical injury, mental trauma, and property r possession damage. The damages can be recovered or rehabilitated or they can leave the permanent marl on your life. There are basically three types of damages that can happen in a car accident. They are:
A kind of harm in an accident is the so-called physical harm, which is expressed in causing harm to the life and health of a person. Physical damage during an accident is classified as insurance and is subject to compensation to victims by insurance companies (insurers).
In the manner and under the conditions provided for by the legislation on compulsory insurance and insurance rules.
Non-pecuniary damage in road accidents
The moral damage caused as a result of a traffic accident, in essence, represents moral and physical suffering from the harmful consequences of a road accident. The objects that are harmed are the life, health of the victim, as well as property rights belonging to the citizen.
Examples of non-pecuniary damage are moral distress in connection with the loss of relatives, the inability to continue a full active life, the loss of work.
The temporary restriction or deprivation of any rights, physical pain associated with bodily injuries caused in an accident or other health disorders resulting from moral suffering. Of course, all of the consequences listed should be causal in connection with a traffic accident.
Property damage in a car accident
Property or Material damage in a car is associated with the deprivation or damage of property, other material goods and is expressed in cash.
In relation to traffic accidents, harmful effects are aimed at damaging vehicles, the goods transported by them, and personal belongings belonging to passengers, drivers, and pedestrians. Often, in an accident, structures (objects of the road network and infrastructure, houses, fences, etc.) are subject to damage.
Whether you had a broken windshield, a bent axle or something worse, it is likely that almost all accidents cause some type of property damage. Property damage is not limited to just your car.
Personal property such as watches, glasses, phones, laptops, sports equipment and more can be damaged in the vehicle. When property damage occurs, it is important to file an insurance claim to receive compensation for the damages suffered.
This type of damage is subject to compensation by the insurance company either of the victim himself or the other driver’s insurer. Some of the examples of the property damage that can happen in the car accident are:
- During a traffic accident caused by the fault of the road service, a car was overturned. The owner of the vehicle suffered real damage from damage to his car.
- If the car is not being repaired, the amount of real damage will be the difference between the market price of a similar car and its sales value in a damaged condition.
- If the owner of the car considers it possible and necessary to repair it, then the cost of its restoration will be related to restoration costs.
- Finding a car for repair, of course, entails the impossibility of its owner to operate and use a taxi in passenger transportation. And therefore the lost profit, the size of which will be determined as the product of repair days and the average daily revenue from taxi transportation.
Types of damage to the car in a car accident
The material or property damage that can happen n a car accident usually involves the car. The other property damage that can happen is to the personal belongings of the victim or that of the culprit.
Such as laptop, mobile, or any other items that the victim or the car owner is carrying. It can also damage the public or governmental properties such as the lamp post, brick walls, etc. However, the most prominent and direct damage that can happen in an accident is the car.
Mostly the body of the car is damaged. The body is one of the most expensive and at the same time vulnerable parts of a car, and not a single car owner wants to overpay for repairs. That is why it is so important to know what types of damage to the body exist and in what cases they occur.
All damages to a car body are divided into two types:
As the name implies, such damage occurs during the operation of the machine. The weight of the driver and passengers, dynamic loads during movement, increased loads due to rough roads, engine vibrations – all this refers to the natural causes of deformation and damage to the body.
Operational damage can only be avoided if you do not use the machine at all. But since the car is not a luxury, but a means of transportation, this option is not suitable. So, you need to carefully monitor the condition of the body and, if necessary, carry out repair work.
- Deformation of individual parts
- Sagging car doors
- Deformation of door/window openings
- Violation of paintwork, as well as anti-corrosion coating of the body
- Warping wings
- A detachment of welded/glued parts, due to which creaks and knocks appear
- Rack Cracks
- Breaks of bolts, nuts
Among all the listed types of damage, the most common is the appearance of corrosion on the body. Even if the car is stored in a garage or box, it is very difficult to avoid rust, because over time the paintwork wears out, becomes thinner and more vulnerable.
If you find rust spots on the surface of the body, do not postpone repairs and wait until corrosion finally destroys the paint. Complete body repair is an expensive procedure, therefore it is important to timely polish, apply a corrosion-resistant coating. And even better – periodically paste the body with a protective polyurethane film.
If damage to the body appeared as a result of an accident, it will be called an emergency. The vast majority of such damage requires repair work, and often – very serious and expensive.
The higher the speed of the car during the accident, the greater the amount of damage and their scale. Almost any accident, even the most minor, leads to damage to the car body. The most serious damage occurs in frontal collisions when the main blow falls on the front of the car.
It is understood that such damage requires repair and, as a rule, urgent. The scale of the accident damage depends on many factors: the speed of the car, the mass of the vehicle, the angle of contact with the obstacle, road conditions, etc. All emergency damage can be divided into three categories:
Damage, after which it is necessary to make a complete replacement of the body.
In this case, you can save the body, but you will need to replace most of its parts.
Slight / minor damage
Holes, dents, scratches that occurred during a collision at a low speed – such damage is easy to repair in a car service or on your own.
Any damage – emergency or operational – must be repaired in a timely manner, even if it is a small dent or chip on the bodywork. Moreover, if you do not have enough experience to conduct an independent repair, it is better not to experiment and immediately turn to specialists to diagnose and completely restore the body.
What to do in case of property damage in a car accident?
As a rule, during an accident, material or assets damage is caused to the vehicle of the participant in the accident, to other property that suffered as a result of the accident.
For example, valuable or expensive things that were present in the car of the victim. Also, material damage can be caused to persons who are not road users whose property suffered as a result of an accident. In an accident, a collision with a car may destroy buildings, engineering structures, elements of road structures, etc.
In addition, material damage can be caused to a pedestrian who is a road user, as a result of a collision which affected his personal belongings, such as a fur coat.
As a general rule, under losses, those expenses that a person whose right has been violated, has made or will have to incur to restore his violated right, loss or damage to his property.
This means that the inflicter of harm, that is a person convicted of an accident in the way prescribed by law is obliged to fully compensate the victim for property damage.
In this case, the culprit of harm is also obliged to compensate for all expenses associated with the restoration of the property rights of the injured person. That includes the costs of the examination, payment of legal services, rental vehicles, repair etc.
- To protect a person who has suffered material damage, first of all, it is necessary to identify the culprit of the accident or a person who, by virtue of the law, is obliged to pay damages. As a rule, the perpretrator of an accident is established during the administrative proceedings instituted by the traffic police on the fact of the incident.
- A claim can be brought directly against the inflicter of harm, as well as against the insurance company in which the culprit has insured his liability. However, in the event that a lawsuit is brought against the insurance company, it is necessary to comply with the claim procedure for resolving the dispute.
- The money spent or which the owner of the vehicle or other property will have to pay for the restoration of the vehicle or other property. Including the purchase of spare parts, legal expenses, including the costs of legal services, notary services, examination costs, money spent on the cost of restoration repair, etc.
- The loss of the commodity value of the car is subject to compensation. The loss of the commodity value of the car is a value that characterizes the decrease in the value of the car as a result of its recovery after an accident.
- The commodity value is established by independent experts. To calculate material damage, as a rule, independent expert organizations are involved, the conclusions of which are in court one of the evidence of causing property damage. Such an examination is called an independent appraisal examination and is carried out in most cases with the inspection of the injured car and other property that has been harmed.
- In addition, in order to recover costs in court, you can submit checks for the purchase of spare parts and other documents confirming the actual costs of carrying out restoration repairs of the damaged car. The obligation to compensate for the harm caused may be assigned to a person in the absence of his fault if such a person has a source of increased danger. The law includes vehicles, machinery, high-voltage electricity, nuclear energy, etc.) as sources of increased danger.
Type of Damage Claim in a Car accident:
Being involved in a car accident can leave you physically damaged as a result of the negligence of another person, but also your car can be damaged. A car accident claim can involve two different parties: the personal injury claim and the property damage claim.
Personal injury claim
The personal injury lawsuit seeks to compensate you for damages that occurred as a result of being physically injured during the accident. this claim seeks to compensate the victim for the physical injuries he suffered from the car accident.
Such injuries can be mild, medium to severe. The mild scratch or serious injuries such as broken legs or ribs all come under personal injury. For which, the perpetrator of the car accident has to bear all the expenses.
Property damage claim
Property damage refers to damage to your car, its contents, and other damage that flows from not having a car to drive. The property damage claim seeks to compensate you for the damage that occurred to your property, or care due to the accident.
The demand for property damage after a car accident often presents complex problems for the person filing the lawsuit. Not only will you have to worry about the physical injuries that were as a result of the accident, but your vehicle may be in such bad conditions that it cannot be driven.
However, the process can be simpler in comparison to filing the claim or lawsuit for personal injuries.
In order to compensate for damage to your property, you can file a lawsuit against your insurance company. Or the other driver’s insurance company depending on who was responsible for the car accident and what type of insurance coverage you have.
After you have filed your property claim for the accident, the insurance company will value your vehicle to determine its value before the accident as well as the cost of repairs. Many times, after the claim has been filed, the insurance company will compensate you only for the lowest estimated amount to repair your car.
Property damage claims are easier than your other claims and can usually be resolved within a few weeks. Claims move very quickly compared to personal injury claims, in part because insurance companies pay you to rent a car and want to return you to the car as soon as possible.
Most of your PD claims are handled by telephone, unlike PI claims that require a lot of paperwork. The only papers that will go back and forth are things like estimated improvements, Blue Book quotes, and assessments.
Process for property damage claim
While nobody is looking to get involved in a car accident, it is important to know the following information. So, if you are involved in a mishap of this nature, know how to act.
Although the other driver has caused the accident, he will generally not deal directly with this driver in resolving your complaint or your claim for damages.
Throughout this process, you will deal directly with the other driver’s insurance company. Because of this, it is important to gather information while you are at the scene of the accident. The data that definitely cannot be missing is the following:
- Name and contact information of the other driver
- Name of the other driver’s insurance company
- The contact details of any possible witness to the accident
- The contact details of any law enforcement officer who appears at the scene.
- It is also a good idea to take pictures while you are at the scene of the accident. Most people carry cell phones and most of them have cameras. While at the scene of the accident, take photographs of the following:
- The location of the vehicles (as they remain after the accident)
- The areas of physical damage in each vehicle
- The plates of each vehicle.
The best way to proceed and successfully resolve such a claim is to understand in advance that the insurance company will require a lot of information.
Another aspect to remember is that the insurance company will never be on your side. Remember that the insurer is in the business to make money and precisely this happens when you get to pay as little as possible to a claim. Insurance companies will try to pursue either of these two arguments:
- That the accident was totally or partially your fault, so you should only be paid a reduced amount on your claim.
- That you have not provided enough documentation to support your loss claims.
At some point in this process, you may find it frustrating and even exasperating.
However, the more information and documentation you provide to the insurance company, the more likely you are to receive fair compensation for all your damages. Remember, the insurance company does not force you to reach an agreement.
Types of damages you can charge for
If you are submitting a claim for property damage only, some of the different types of damages you may be entitled to collect are:
- Vehicle damage.
- Damage to personal property: compensation for items such as a computer that may have been in the car, a bicycle or a luggage carrier, if these were damaged in the accident.
- Car rental. Most insurance companies will reimburse you under the concept of renting a car you needed while your vehicle was being repaired.
- Out-of-pocket expenses, for example, if you had to hire a taxi to return home from the accident site or from the police station.
The insurance company will extend an agreement offer based solely on the information and documentation you provide. If you have not provided proof of a pocket expense for example, then the insurance company will take the position that you are not entitled to be compensated for that part of your loss.
The insurance company will enter into a settlement agreement only if it is in the best interest of the company to do so. However, in general, the insurance company knows that resolving a claim is best for it.
Litigation is expensive, and you know that it is more efficient and less expensive to pay fair compensation for your loss. Instead of paying attorneys’ fees to fight the case you have filed, especially when the outcome of a trial would be unpredictable.
Cases when it is necessary to file a claim not with an insurance company:
By law, drivers from almost every state in the country must have a minimum of insurance coverage in case they are involved in an accident and must compensate damages caused to third parties with their vehicle. On this basis, the civil liability system works in case of an accident.
If all drivers have insurance, at the time of an accident, this will indemnify. The costs of repairing damaged cars, the loss of personal property of those involved or third parties, medical treatment, and claims for damages of the people involved in the accident.
The problem is that many drivers decide to get the most basic insurance, the minimum that state laws require to meet the requirements of driving legally. But this coverage is not always sufficient and then the problems begin.
This without counting that many drivers neglect their obligations and do not have insurance, in the hope that they will never see each other in a mishap and that nobody discovers them. Not having car insurance is not only illegal in many states, but it is also quite inconvenient.
Because the responsibility of driving then left in your hands and in the financial resources of the driver himself. If a driver does not have money to buy insurance, there is a good chance that he will not have the resources to face a claim for an accident.
If the culprit of the car accident doesn’t have insurance, this also means a big problem for people who do have insurance. There are two methods by which you can recover the expenses for your property damage.
In the first case, the entire amount of damage caused shall be recovered from the culprit of the accident. To do this, you need to:
- Determine the amount to be recovered, which is necessary for the reconstruction. To do this, it is necessary to carry out an auto-technical examination (assessment of the cost of restoration repair of a vehicle). The culprit must be notified in advance of the vehicle inspection by an expert auto technician.
- After that, it is necessary to observe the pre-trial procedure for the settlement of the dispute, but it is advisable to conduct it in order to more quickly receive money from the culprit of the accident. If within 7 days, the culprit of the accident did not pay you, then you must file a lawsuit in court the culprit of the accident.
- In order to protect your rights and receive money, you will need an experienced lawyer who can prepare the necessary documents for the pre-trial settlement of the dispute. And file a lawsuit that will represent your interests in court, and after the decision is made, it will help to get the collected money.
Uninsured motorist insurance
In another case, you can recover the compensation for your property damage by claiming in your own insurance company. However, this can bring many problems in the future.
For this reason, insurance companies have coverage that can be added to private car insurance, which provides additional protection. In case the driver with whom you may have had a crash does not have insurance, and you can also do the claim to your insurer without consequences of future cancellations.
In other words, when you include in your policy the coverage of uninsured or underinsured drivers if you have a crash with an uninsured driver or who is on the run. The insurer will reimburse you as if it were the insurance of another driver. Two other benefits of this additional coverage are that:
- It takes effect if you are the victim of running over as a pedestrian or bystander.
- Additionally, cover the coverage of an underinsured driver above the minimum limits, if it is to blame for the accident and your insurance coverage is not enough to complete the crash costs.
This insurance may also provide certain funds to repair your vehicle if you do not have insurance and a driver with uninsured driver’s insurance coverage crashes you and he is to blame.
But you should not expect other drivers to have this type of insurance because many times they do not select it as an option. The main reason is that it costs an additional charge to the premium, but the second and most limiting is that not all states in the country allow the issuance of this coverage.
Use of uninsured motorist insurance
A case in which uninsured motorist coverage is used is when someone crashes and escapes. In that situation, you can ask your insurance to reimburse you for the costs of damages caused by said escaped driver.
Another occasion in which the use of this coverage is observed is when you do not have insurance (it is not recommended because it could be illegal in your state to drive without insurance) and a driver crashes and destroys your car. If the driver who crashed you has uninsured motorist insurance among your insurance selection.
You will receive the benefits of being able to fix your vehicle, courtesy of the insurance that the guilty party of the accident covers. You surely want to keep up with the law, purchase your private car insurance and drive with peace of mind, so ask about the various coverages that make up personal auto insurance and make sure you are well.
How to protect yourself, your car and your property during a car accident?
No matter how experienced you are, and how cautious you are, a car accident may happen at your fault or without your fault. When such an unfortunate event occurs, make sure to protect yourself first.
After all, what is the most important asset to your own body and health? You also have to ensure the protection of your passenger and your car.
Protect yourself in a car accident
Take a look at some of the following tips:
- Stay still: During stressful situations, sometimes we can react in ways we would not normally do. Your first reaction may be to leave and seek help or go to a safe place. Leaving the scene of a car accident, especially if someone was injured or killed in the accident, can lead to serious criminal charges. In some cases, those who leave the scene of a car accident could be accused of not helping.
- Assess the damage: Verifying the safety of you and those around you is vital when you are involved in a car accident. Make sure that you and those affected by the accident stay away from other vehicles that may be nearby to avoid additional collisions or pedestrian accidents.
- Contact the authorities: Calling the police and first aid will ensure you get the medical care you need as soon as possible. In addition, request that a police report be submitted and collect the identification of the officers involved in taking the call, such as the license plate number, etc.
- Take care of what you say (and stay firm): Unexpected situations, such as car accidents, can leave many of us stressed, which leads us to wonder if we could have done something different to change the situation or the end result. Never apologize or sign anything assuming responsibility for a car accident until you have first consulted a lawyer with experience in car accidents.
- Gather information: In addition to obtaining the names and badge number of the police officers involved, it is also important to gather information from other parties involved in a car collision. Be sure to write down the names, contact information and driver’s license number of other drivers, passengers, and even witnesses. Also, consider the license plate, make and model of the vehicle.
- Gather evidence: The new technology has made it possible for those who have been in a car accident to have access to information collection methods at their fingertips. The images of your car and the accident scene can be an important resource later when you and your accident lawyer highlight the damage suffered.
- Get help: Seeking the advice and representation of a qualified and experienced car accident lawyer is an essential step in ensuring your protection, that of your family members and that of your property.
- Use the seat belt: Just using the seat belt while driving is the most important thing to survive a car accident. Make sure that the belt fits your hip perfectly and that the shoulder part passes through the middle of your chest. Children should be sitting in an upright position that permits them to put on their seat belts.
- Save the items so they can’t hurt you in case of a car accident: If you believe that an object present inside the car can become a projectile during an accident, remove it from the vehicle or store it in the trunk.
- Ensure your car’s security systems are in proper condition: Especially safety belts and airbags, which help prevent damage and death in car crashes.
- If you can’t avoid the car accident and you know that your car is going to crash, minimize the damage.
- Save yourself and your car from face-to-face collisions with another vehicle or front-rear collisions of objects that do not move like large trees or concrete barriers.
- Do everything you can to control or minimize the speed of your car. The faster the car, the more damage it will cause.
- Avoid side impacts on your car. Severe damage results from this type of accident, because the structure of the car is weaker on the sides, near where the driver is.
- Contact emergency services after the accident as soon as possible: Apply basic first aid if needed. Don’t try to remove an injured person from the vehicle. The danger of the explosions are very rare and could cause irreversible damage to the spine or neck, even if the victim is not injured.
- Do not bend forward or cover your head with anything. If your car rolls because of an accident, any type of force applied to your body could shoot you in any direction that can cause you to hit your head and remain unconscious. It is very unlikely that you suffer a lot of damage and injuries if the airbags are activated.
Protect your car in a car accident
Each motorist must certainly carry the mandatory accessories in the trunk or interior of his car for safety reasons helpful during the car accident.
The security kit
The safety kit consists of an approved fluorescent yellow safety vest and a warning triangle. This kit is to be used in the event of a breakdown or accident in order to signal the danger to other motorists and to protect the driver.
The triangle must be set up at least 30 meters from the place of immobilization in order to warn other users early enough.
To ensure the safety of children under 10, it is mandatory to use a car seat and place it in the back of the vehicle. Children must be installed rearward facing up to 15 months and the choice of car seat is made according to the size of the child.
In your trunk, do not forget to put the essentials of the apprentice mechanic:
- a jack and across the key to be able to mount a spare tire;
- a Phillips key and screwdrivers to change the bulbs;
- an anti-icing squeegee for the winter;
- DIY gloves;
- a flashlight in case you need to work on your car in the dark.
A spare tire
Not compulsory but highly recommended, having a spare tire and the equipment allowing you to install it will save you money if you end up with a flat tire.
You can also use a single-use puncture bomb in the event of a lightly punctured tire. Please note, in both cases, these are temporary solutions: change your tire as soon as possible and do not exceed 80 km / h with a spare tire!
The fire extinguisher is not one of the compulsory parts to have in your car. It can, however, be lifesaving in the event of a fire under the hood. Remember to check in advance that it is an approved model and to regularly monitor the expiration date.
A window breaker hammer
Mostly seen on buses, the window breaker can also be useful in a car. In fact, if you are stuck in your vehicle following an accident, it will allow you to free yourself: first by cutting the seat belt with the razor blade, then by breaking the windows with the tip.
Whether it is the fire extinguisher or the window breaker hammer, it is essential to securely fix these elements in the passenger compartment of your vehicle in order to avoid any danger in the event of an accident.
A first-aid kit
Although it is not compulsory, the first aid kit is nevertheless crucial to be able to relieve minor ailments or provide first aid in the event of an accident.
Survival blanket, dressings, sterile compresses, scissors, disposable gloves, disinfectant, painkiller or motion sickness medication, burn or sting cream. It’s up to you to compose your first aid kit so that you can act in the face of unforeseen events.
To avoid finding yourself lacking in front of a dead battery, think of slipping jump cables in the trunk of your car!
Protect your car from an accident in the parking
Snowdrifts, slippery tracks, limited visibility are not the most pleasant conditions for winter use. But in tight parking lots, there is a direct path to broken headlights, split bumpers, and scratched wings. In this case, the driver does not have to sit in the car.
Spacious parking lot
Of course, it’s nice to get out of the car and immediately dive into the subway, office or shopping center. But all other drivers argue the same way, so parking at the entrances and exits to the subway is always densely packed. But a little further from the destination, you can certainly find a more spacious and safe parking place.
True, you have to take a little walk, but this is much better than running around on insurance and car services later on. Alas, in most cases it is in a cluster of cars parked in cramped conditions that car owners grind each other.
Cleanliness is the key to health
It is terribly insulting to hit the neighboring car simply because it was not visible due to the snow adhering to the glass. Therefore, do not be lazy every time before the trip to work with a scraper and a brush. Another aid is a defrosting spray that quickly melts ice and snow on glasses.
If the car stalls, it’s the cat litter that will help you get out because in a tight parking lot it’s dangerous to use the classic way to get out of the car without calculating the acceleration.
And the filler, sprinkled under the wheels, will improve grip and allow you to leave on low gas. Coarse salt or sand acts in a similar way, but these substances are extremely inconvenient to carry with you constantly.
In short daylight conditions, this is important! Many parking lots are equipped with CCTV cameras, and if someone touches your car and hides, there is a chance to calculate an unscrupulous driver by appointment. The brighter the place is illuminated, the better the car that triggered the accident will be visible.
External cameras are good, but it’s better to be safe. Buy a DVR, it will help in case of a contentious accident in court. Specialists recommend devices with a parking mode. Better to activate it, leaving the car in the parking lot.
In this mode, recording starts if a motion sensor or shock sensor is triggered, that is, anyone who hits your car or even just passes by will fall into the frame. In this case, the software automatically assigns the status important to all parking records and saves them to the department protected from overwriting.
One thing you have to remember is that no asset is more important than the life of people. While car accidents cant is avoided, you have to do your best to protect yourself, and the person inside the car.
It is also your responsibility to protect the life of the victim or the injured person in an accident. The important step which can protect your car, yourself and your possession is to prevent the car accident as much as possible.