Problems with short term car insurance claims

Short term car insurance (you can buy one single day cover from in the UK) is a great way to protect yourself and your car for short periods like when you are sharing driving with friends or borrowing your brother’s van to move into a new apartment.

However, sometimes problems can arise in the claims process. Not all companies are as responsive or even ethical when it comes to honouring insurance claims. Some may even purposely try to avoid meeting their legal obligations.

If you have problems in getting your short term car insurance claim approved, the first thing is to make sure all your paperwork is in order. Closely go over the terms and conditions of your insurance agreement.

Make sure you know exactly what is covered and about all the applicable limitations, exclusions and other conditions. You do not want to argue needlessly with your insurance company when you are actually in the wrong. For example, you may want to have your damaged vehicle repaired at your local garage, but the insurance contract states that the insurer has the right to choose who repairs the vehicle.

If you have examined your policy closely and are sure that you are in the right, then be prepared to make your arguments forcefully and with sufficient documentation.

If, for example, you have a dispute over the value of your vehicle, then you should find the latest research that supports your claims. If you are making claims for personal injury, get written evaluations from your doctor along with documentation on wages lost due to the injuries.

See what the adjuster is willing to offer first, and then if this is not acceptable make a counter offer. If you are not able to negotiate an acceptable deal, then you will need to take this a step further. Ask to speak to the adjuster’s supervisor and if you still do not get an adequate response take the matter up the “chain of command.”

Once you have exhausted all recourse within the company itself and are still not satisfied, you have the further option of seeking legal representation or taking the matter to a government agency in some cases. Often, simply threatening to take your case to a lawyer or to the government will be enough, so try sending an appropriate letter to the company about your intentions.

How to avoid claims problems
You can take some precautions to avoid problems with short term car insurance claims. If you are involved in an accident, make sure to write a detailed account of the events as soon as possible. Don’t wait because your memory of events can change dramatically over time.

Take down the name and address of the other driver, and the registration number and insurance policy details.

Get statements and contact information from witnesses, if available. Do not admit to any liability at the scene of the accident. If you are injured, see a doctor immediately after the accident. In addition, immediately contact your personal injury solicitor and insurance company.