While the aftermath of a car collision can be undeniably terrible, the reality is that many British Columbians find themselves navigating through such experiences. What do you do after a car collision when it comes to insurance claims and repairs? This is a question many drivers find themselves asking. The right collision insurance coverage is critical to protect yourself financially. In the following blog, we’ll answer the common questions that we have regarding car collision.
FAQ: Collisions & Collision Coverage
What is the meaning of a car collision?
A collision, also known as a traffic collision or car accident, occurs when a vehicle collides with another vehicle, pedestrian, animal, or any stationary obstruction like a tree or building. It is an incident involving the impact of a motor vehicle on another object.
Is a collision the same as an accident?
No, a collision and an accident are not the same. "Accident" implies no one is to blame, while "collision" can suggest someone is at fault, although this can be subjective. This is why collisions and accidents should be reported to ICBC or your insurance provider.
Do I have to report a collision in BC?
Yes. In BC, you are required to report any car accident you are involved in, especially if the damages exceed $1,000. This amount, along with personal injury, is difficult to estimate immediately after a crash.
What steps should I take if someone sustains serious injuries in a collision?
In the event of serious injuries, immediately dial 911. Emergency services will coordinate medical responders and law enforcement. Additionally, contact the police if the other driver lacks insurance or leaves the accident scene to ensure proper documentation and assistance.
What is the difference between collision and comprehensive insurance?
Collision insurance covers damage from collisions with vehicles or objects, while comprehensive insurance covers non-collision incidents like theft, vandalism, or weather-related damage.
When should I consider dropping collision coverage?
Consider dropping collision coverage when your vehicle reaches about five or six years in age or when the cost of the coverage exceeds 10% of your car's total value. This could be financially advantageous for you.
What should I do immediately after a car collision?
After ensuring safety, exchange information with the other party, document the scene (take photos) and promptly notify your insurance company to initiate the claims process (online or on the phone). Call emergency services (911) if there are serious injuries involved. Get a police report for serious crashes to ensure everything's on file.
How do I choose the right car collision repair shop?
Look for certified collision care centers, read reviews, and consider recommendations. Cerna Collision in Surrey BC is a reputable option with skilled technicians.
What is collision coverage in car insurance?
Collision coverage protects your vehicle in accidents, covering repair costs regardless of fault. It's essential for addressing damages sustained in collisions with other vehicles or objects.
Is collision insurance the same as comprehensive coverage?
No, collision insurance specifically covers damages resulting from collisions, while comprehensive coverage includes non-collision incidents like theft, vandalism, or natural disasters.
How does collision car insurance affect my premium?
Having collision coverage generally increases your premium, but it provides financial protection for collision-related damages, minimizing out-of-pocket expenses.
Can collision insurance cover a hit-and-run incident?
Yes, collision coverage can help if your car is damaged in a hit-and-run, provided you report the incident promptly to law enforcement and your insurance company.
Do I need collision insurance on a rental car?
It depends. If you have comprehensive coverage on your policy, it may extend to rental cars. Check with your insurance provider and the rental company to confirm coverage specifics.
What should I look for in a certified collision care center?
Certified collision care centers have trained technicians, use genuine parts, and adhere to industry standards, ensuring quality repairs that maintain your vehicle's safety and value.
How long does it take to repair a car after a collision?
Repair times vary based on the extent of damage. Cerna Collision strives for efficient service without compromising quality, providing estimated repair timelines during the assessment.
Can I choose any repair shop after a collision, or does my insurance dictate it?
In many cases, you have the right to choose your repair shop. Consult your insurance policy and confirm any network restrictions or recommendations.
What is the role of a claims adjuster in the collision repair process?
A claims adjuster assesses the damage, estimates repair costs, and facilitates communication between you, the repair shop, and the insurance company to ensure a smooth claims process.
Can a collision affect my vehicle's resale value?
Yes, a collision can impact resale value. However, choosing a reputable repair shop helps ensure proper repairs that minimize this impact.
How do I know if a collision repair shop is using genuine parts for my vehicle?
Certified collision care centers prioritize genuine parts to maintain your vehicle's performance, safety, and warranty.
Does collision insurance cover medical expenses after an accident?
No, collision insurance primarily covers vehicle repair costs. ICBC offers Enhanced Care, meaning all parties have access to recovery, no matter who's at fault for an accident (after 2021). Otherwise, there may be a limit on care benefits.
Can I dispute the estimated repair costs provided by my insurance company?
Answer: Yes, you can dispute estimates. Obtain alternative estimates from reputable repair shops to support your case and negotiate with your insurance adjuster.
What steps should I take if the other party denies fault in a collision?
Gather evidence, such as witness statements and photos, and report the incident to your insurance company. They'll investigate and determine fault based on available evidence.
Is there a difference between OEM and aftermarket parts in collision repairs?
OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) parts are produced by the vehicle's manufacturer, ensuring compatibility and quality. Aftermarket parts are produced by other companies and may vary in quality.
How can I expedite the collision repair process?
Stay in communication with your chosen repair shop, promptly provide any required documentation, and follow their recommendations to ensure a streamlined and efficient repair process.
The Basics of Car Collision Insurance Coverage
Collision insurance is a form of coverage designed to assist in the payment for repairing or replacing your vehicle if it has been damaged in an accident involving another vehicle or object.
Unlike liability insurance, which offers coverage for claims of damage and injuries to others in the event of your fault, collision insurance provides coverage for damage to your own vehicle, irrespective of fault. This type of auto insurance plays a vital role in lessening the financial impact of accidents, particularly those involving high-value vehicles or extensive damage. Therefore, it’s wise to buy collision insurance to protect your investment.
You should also consider that collision insurance isn’t confined to collisions with other vehicles. This coverage also extends to incidents where your car hits an object, like a tree or a fence.
Furthermore, collision coverage helps pay for repair expenses in case of a hit-and-run incident, so you’re not left to bear the financial burden by yourself.
Contact Cerna Collision for Quality Car Repair Services
Should you require top-notch car repair services following a collision or courtesy car after a collision, Cerna Collision is your go-to choice. Our team of experienced technicians specializes in auto collision repairs for a wide range of vehicle makes and models, including luxury and aluminum-bodied vehicles. We’re an ICBC express valet shop, offering seamless ICBC claim assistance, estimates, auto paint matching, and various auto repairs like dent and bumper repairs.