You’ve insured your car, you’ve even insured your household belongings and now you don’t need to think about it again, as it’s all ‘covered’. “Not so,” says most of the insurance branch experts. “There are many insurance pitfalls that people can avoid if they are aware of them. Clients often don’t read their policies in detail, which can lead to nasty surprises when they submit claims.”
Dial Direct advises that possible pitfalls can be avoided by doing the following:
Reading the fine print The old cliché of making sure that you read the small print is particularly important when it comes to insurance, as that is where you will find vital information like exclusions. There are certain conditions under which your insurer will not pay a claim and you need to make sure that you know what these are, so that you can avoid them. For example, if you have an accident when you have been drinking or taking drugs, if an unlicensed person was driving your car, or if your car is not roadworthy, your claim will definitely be rejected.
Adhering to time limits: Insurance companies all have their own particular time frames in which a claim needs to be submitted. Dial Direct requires that you inform them of anything that has happened that you may claim for, within 60 days. You also have to supply them with full details. Within 48 hours, you have to report anything that is lost or stolen, to the police. Any documents that you receive in connection with a claim must be submitted within 30 days, for example, proof of ownership. Finally, all documentation and information required by the insurer in connection with your claim must be given to them within 30 days of reporting the incident.
Complying with your obligations to your insurer: There are certain obligations that every client has, which, if unfulfilled, can lead to a policy being canceled. These include ensuring that you provide your insurer with true and complete information; that you agree to comply with all of their reasonable requests; that you take care and the necessary precautions in order to prevent or minimize loss, damage, death, injury, or liability. In short, you are responsible for your car and possessions.
Insurance experts also agree that it is also really important that a client never admits any fault, or makes an offer of settlement to a third party without the written agreement of the insurer. The insurer is there to assist and protect the customer in the event of an incident and to make sure that the claims process proceeds correctly, both legally and financially. If you go ahead without involving your insurance company, you could find yourself paying for repairs, medical bills, etcetera that you were not actually liable for in the first place. In such a case, your insurer cannot help you to reverse the process if you have gone ahead on your own.
In conclusion, these are just some of the basic principles of insurance that, if followed, will ensure that your insurance works for you and that you won’t run into trouble when you need to submit a claim.