How to handle a car accident

What To Do If You Get Into a Car Accident

How to handle a car accidentBeing in an accident can be a very frightening event. Being prepared to know how to handle the situation when it occurs will help you deal with the shock of it, and obtaining proper documentation helps support a claim. While accidents will happen to almost every driver, whether their car is parked and unattended, or while they’re driving, knowing these important steps will help you deal with the unfortunate situation.

Safely park your vehicle: If you happen to be driving when the accident occurs, safely pull the vehicle over to the side of the road. If possible, carefully write down the license plate and description of the other vehicle(s) involved in the accident. If you are reporting a hit-and-run, this information will aid police in locating the driver. In the event of a hit-and-run it most likely happens when your vehicle is unattended. If you return to your vehicle to find damage, look for clues to help you prove your case, i.e. Security cameras.

Assess any Injuries: If someone is injured, take care of their immediate needs and quickly call 911. It is typical to be jittery after such an event so catch your breath too.

Call police: Once you’re safely parked, you should call the police to file a report, especially if another party is involved. It’s important to always have documentation of how the accident happened. Some people want to settle the claim without going through insurance, but this comes with risks. The other driver may not live up to their word and without contacting the police, it turns into a he said, she said scenario.

Exchange Information: Exchanging insurance ID cards is always recommended. Be sure to have their name and phone number too. It’s simple to take a picture with your phone. Be sure to include the car’s license plate number, year, make and model too.

Take pictures/Gather any witness information: If you have a witness who wants to share their side of the story, jot down their phone number and name. Your insurance company will want to talk with any witness to the accident. Taking pictures also gives your insurance company more details on the damage of your vehicle.

Call your insurance company: Sometimes even though vehicles collide, the damages may be limited, so you’ll want to take a close look and determine if you want to pursue a claim or get an estimate first before calling your insurance company. If someone was injured or if you have major damage, it’s always best to call your insurance company immediately. Your insurance company can assist you with your claim so if you have taken pictures and provided all the information above, your claim can be settled quicker.

While we hope you never have to experience a car accident, being prepared will help you tackle the unfortunate situation. If you have questions about your auto insurance coverage, reach out to one of our agents at Alliance West Insurance, Inc.

6 Benefits of Working with a Local Insurance Agency

A local insurance agent listens to your needs then finds a customized insurance policy that fits those needs. When looking for insurance, consider your local, independent insurance agents in Washington. We do more than just provide you with a great insurance policy. Because we live in a “need it now” society, instant quotes for auto insurance, home insurance and more seem attractive. However, these instant quotes don’t guarantee you are getting the best insurance rates and coverage for your situation. Here are some ways a local insurance agent can help you:

Professional Advice

Not sure how much coverage you need to protect your home or confused about what line of insurance you need to protect your small business? Local insurance agents not only want what’s best for you but we’ll provide our professional guidance as well. We’ll listen to your needs, strive to not only educate you on what you are and aren’t covered for, but also counsel you on what insurance company best fits you. Because we represent multiple insurance companies, you get choice.

Did your insurance increase? We can help.

If you have insurance through a direct carrier and you notice your car insurance increases by $300 the following year, you might be thinking it’s time to change carriers.  While your insurance may increase with a local insurance agent, all you have to do is reach out to your agent via email or phone. We’ll shop our many insurance carriers to find the best coverage for your needs & budget. Our agency works to save you time and money by working with pre-selected insurance companies and acting on your behalf to fit you into the right insurance program.

Guidance with how to deal with a claim.

Being involved in an insurance claim can be a hassle, but we can assist you throughout the entire process to make it easier on you. By simply calling us, you’ll quickly learn how to settle your claim and be made whole again.

Build a Relationship

Just like you have built trust with your doctor or dentist, we want the same type of relationship with helping you with your insurance. We strive to build that same trust when it comes to needing insurance guidance or saving you time & money. To us, you’re not just a customer, you’re a valued client who needs to be properly protected.

You Have Questions, We Have Answers

Your lifestyle and needs change over time and we are here to assist you with all of life’s changes. Whether you’re looking to start a business, going from renting to owning a home or needing to insure your new classic car vehicle, we are here to help with all your insurance needs.

We Can Do It All

Since we offer many lines of insurance, we can cover all your needs. Plus, when you bundle insurance policies, it may qualify you to save additional money. Get your home, car, boat and business insurance all under one roof to make it easy for you.

If you are looking to find a local insurance agent in Washington for your autohome or business insurance, call Alliance West Insurance, Inc. We look forward to earning your business and will strive to create a lasting relationship.

RCV vs. ACV Washington Insurance

RC vs. ACV – What does it mean?

An insurance policy’s usefulness is determined by the policy language used. Specific policy language determines what is covered, what is excluded and the amounts covered under the policy. Reviewing your insurance policy language every now and again may be helpful in the event of a claim, as you would have a better understanding of what may be covered.

Insurance policies are full of language and terms that may not be clear right off the bat. Many terms are specific to the industry and to the specific type of insurance that is being purchased. Two such terms are Replacement Cost (RC) and Actual Cash Value (ACV). These terms can be a bit confusing to decipher between.

RC vs. ACV in Washington:

  • RC is very simple: It is literally the cost to replace your item with an item of similar quality. Replacement cost policies tend to be a bit more expensive since you are essentially getting a brand new item for one that may have otherwise depreciated. Replacement costs are agreed upon by all parties before the insurance policy is finalized. If you have high-ticket items (jewelry, art, RV, boat, luxury vehicle or classic car) this may be the best type of coverage if you can afford it.
  • ACV is the cost to replace the item minus any depreciation. For example, if you were in an auto accident and you had an actual cash value policy, your insurance would pay out the cost of the vehicle minus any depreciation, so if your vehicle is worth less than what you owe you would be responsible for paying that difference out of pocket, unless you had gap insurance. An actual cash value policy can put you in a tight spot if your items cost more to replace or repair than your policy pays out. Depreciation values for big ticket items like RVs or luxury cars can be quite large, so make sure that you have a nest egg and be prepared to pay some out-of-pocket for a loss if you have an actual cash value insurance policy.

No matter which policy type you choose, the local experts at Alliance West Insurance, Inc. can answer any questions and walk you through the different types of scenarios to see which policy type is right for your situation. Alliance West Insurance, Inc. in Washington can guide you through your homeowner’s insurance policy and more, like auto insurance. Our years of insurance experience can save you a bundle, and we live right in your area, so we know firsthand what your insurance needs might be. You can also visit our insurance website 24/7 to learn more about the insurance products we offer.