Claims - it's almost inevitable that sooner or later you're going to be involved either directly or indirectly with an incident that might lead to a claim under your, or someone else's policy. The key is to be prepared.
Fast Track Claims Service
The majority of motor insurers now have a 24 hr 365 days a year "Helpline" which will ensure that no matter when or where you need assistance it's only a phone call away.
You should make a note of the relevant Helpline numbers and a note of your policy number together with your insurers name and address and carry these in the car at all times.
Calling the Helpline gets you immediate access to the network of Approved Repairers and other benefits. You are of course free to use a repairer of your own choice, but you will need to send in a repair estimate with a suitable claim form.
For accidents involving another vehicle , damage to property or injury to other people (including passengers in your vehicle) or animal e.g. Dog.
1.Should I use the Helpline to inform my insurers? - Yes
2.What details should I give the other driver? Your name and address and your insurance company's details - name / policy number.
3.What details should the other driver give to me? Their name address and insurance company details.
4.Anything else? Take a note of the other vehicles registration number, the time and road conditions and the location and details of any witnesses that come forward. If you have a camera take pictures of the accident scene.
For accidents NOT involving another vehicle damage to property or injury to others or animals.
1.Should I inform the Police? - Not unless the vehicle is in a dangerous position.
2.Should I use the Helpline to contact my insurers? - Yes
3.Anything else? Take a note of the time and conditions and the location of the incident.
For theft of the vehicle (recovered or not) and / or it's accessories.
1.Should I inform the Police? - Yes. Ask them to allocate a Crime Reference Number - you will need this later.
2.Should I use the Helpline to contact my insurance company? - Yes
3.Anything else? - Take a note of the time and circumstances and of any witnesses that come forward.
4.If my car isn't recovered, how long will the insurance company wait before paying me out? - Typically if the vehicle is stolen the insurers will wait for around 28 days to see if it turns up. After that they will settle any claim and if the car is subsequently recovered it would then be their property.
Quick Guide - Glass Breakages - Comprehensive Cover Only.
Damage to glass comes in 2 basic forms, repairable and non - repairable. If the glass has actually shattered then obviously the only course of action is to have the glass replaced but if the damage is only slight then a repair may be a better option.
A repair is possible only under certain circumstances and you will need the help of an expert.
They are able to deal with all glass related matters at any time of the day or night. In 99% of cases the bill (less any excess) will be sent directly to your insurance company.
What information will be needed? - The name and policy number of your insurance company. Ideally a photocopy of your Certificate of Motor Insurance should be kept in the car at all times as it will contain all relevant details.
Is there an excess? - If you have the glass repaired there is no excess but if it's replaced an excess will apply - the amount is normally between £75 and £100.
Will it affect my No Claims Bonus? - Glass claims do NOT affect bonus.
You can contact your insurers on the Windscreen Helpline Numbers below:
The first and most important point to make regarding NCB is that it's a No Claims Bonus and NOT a No BLAME Bonus. So the rule of thumb is that your No Claims Bonus will be affected if any incident leads to your insurance company paying either you or someone else money that they can't subsequently recover. So for example, if your car is stolen or if it's damaged whilst it's parked and unattended then although it's not your fault in any way then it still affects your bonus if you make a claim.
However, claims for accidental breakage of glass don't count and if you are lucky enough to have Protected No Claims Bonus then normally your bonus will not be affected provided you haven't had more than a specified number of claims over a certain period.
Even if you do make a claim for something that affects your bonus, it's quite likely that you will not be as badly off as you might think. That's because the bonus is "stepped back" in stages. So if you currently have a 60% or 4 year bonus, an isolated claim would normally "step" you back just 2 years - or 20% - at the following renewal. In other words you would still retain 40% of your bonus entitlement.