Formalities for a motor insurance claim
• For personal injury or property damage related to someone else. This person is called a third party in this context) or
• For damage to your own, insured, vehicle. This is called an own damage claim and you are eligible for this if you are holding what is known as a package or a comprehensive policy.
Third Party Claim
In a third party claim, where your vehicle is involved, it is important to ensure that the accident is reported immediately to the police as well as to the insurance company. On the other hand, if you are a victim, that is, if somebody else’s vehicle was involved, you must obtain the insurance details of that vehicle and make an intimation to the insurer of that vehicle.
Own Damage Claim
In the event of an own damage claim, that is, where your own vehicle is damaged due to an accident, you must immediately inform insurance company and police, wherever required, to enable them to depute a surveyor to assess the loss.
Do not attempt to move the vehicle from the accident spot without the permission of police and the insurance company.
Once you receive permission for removal of the vehicle and for repairs, you can do so. If your policy provides for cashless service, which means you do not have to pay out of your pocket for covered damages, the insurance company will pay the workshop directly. In either of these situations, you must intimate the insurance company immediately.
If your vehicle is stolen, you must inform the police and the insurance company immediately. In addition you must keep the transport department also informed. As soon as you receive the policy document, read about the procedures and documentation requirements for claims rather than wait for a claim to arise. If you have to make a claim, ensure that you collect all the required documents and submit them along with the requisite claim form duly filled in, to the insurance company. There may be certain specific documentation requirements for specific types of claims. For instance in respect of a theft claim, there is a special requirement that you should surrender the vehicle keys to the insurance company.
Formalities for a death claim
When a person with a life insurance policy – called a life assured – dies, a claim intimation should be sent to the insurance company as early as possible. The assignee or nominee under the policy can do this. So can any close relative or the agent who handles the policy.
The claim intimation should contain information like the date, place and cause of death. The insurance agent has the duty to help the life assured’s family/ assignee to deal with the insurance company to fulfil the formalities for a claim.
The insurance company will respond to this intimation and will ask for the following documents:
• Filled-up claim form (provided by the insurance company) • Certificate of death • Policy document • Deeds of assignments/ re-assignments if any • Legal evidence of title, if the policy is not assigned or nominated • Form of discharge executed and witnessed
Other documents such as medical attendant's certificate, hospital certificate, employer's certificate, police inquest report, post mortem report etc could be called for, as applicable.
Formalities for a maturity claim
Where a life insurance policy is maturing, the insurance company will usually send intimation to the policyholder along with a discharge voucher at least two to three months in advance of the date of maturity giving details like the maturity amount payable.
The policyholder has to sign the discharge voucher – which is like a receipt – have his signature witnessed and send it back to the insurance company along with the original policy bond to enable it to make the payment. If the policy has been assigned in favour of any other person or entity – like a housing loan company – the claim amount will be paid only to the assignee who will give the discharge.
Formalities for making a travel insurance claim
A travel insurance policy is generally a package policy that includes different types of covers like hospitalisaiton, personal accident, loss/ damage to baggage, loss of passport and so on. The procedure and documents required for a claim would vary from cover to cover. All of them would be mentioned in your policy document. For ease of procedure and your convenience, insurers normally attach the claim form with the policy document. This will contain the list of documents required in case of a claim and also the contact details including phone numbers of the claims administrator either in the destination country to which you are traveling or in another country that is designated to receive and process your claim intimation. Since this is a package policy with various covers and procedures it is very important that you familiarise yourself with the procedures and documentation in case of a claim.
Formalities for making a property insurance claim
There could be several types of policies that cover property and the property itself could be stationery - like a building, or moving around - like your household goods being transported.
When you receive your policy familiarise yourself with the documents required for a claim as well as the procedures to be followed. Whether or not a claim arises you must follow the various dos and don’ts in respect of your property for the duration of the policy. These dos and don’ts are termed warranties and conditions in your policy document.
In general, losses and damages, including those due to theft, fire and flood need be intimated to the relevant authorities such as the police, the fire brigade and so on. It is important to ensure that you intimate your insurance company to enable it to send a surveyor for surveying and assessing the loss.
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