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Sunday, December 15, 2019

What you should know about filing motor insurance claims for vehicles damaged in floods

People whose vehicles were lost or completely damaged in the recent floods will have their insurance claims expedited, provided their insurance policy is valid till the date of the incident.

Updated: August 14, 2019 3:48:24 pm
Representational image (Source: PTI)

By Tarun Mathur

With no signs of respite anytime soon, four major states of India – Kerala, Karnataka, Gujarat and Maharashtra – remain on edge as the death toll rises. Though the rains have reduced and flood waters have finally started receding in many part, the struggles of people affected by the floods are not over yet. Multiple media reports have said the preliminary estimate of losses is in several thousand crores. People whose homes, offices and vehicles have been damaged are planning to turn to insurance companies for compensation. After all, during such a crisis it’s a great relief to know that insurance eases the financial burden.

Thankfully, people whose vehicles were lost or completely damaged in the recent floods will have their insurance claims expedited, provided their insurance policy is valid till the date of the incident. With the right vehicle insurance policy in place, customers can save themselves from the financial stress of paying for vehicles’ repair. However, in order to make a claim for your vehicle damaged or lost due to floods, you should be aware about the right process.

Filing a Motor Insurance Claim

All major motor insurance companies offer adequate coverage for any loss or damage to the vehicle due to any pre-listed natural calamity. This includes floods, landslides and earthquakes. For circumstances like the recent floods in Kerala, Karnataka, Maharashtra and Gujarat, you can easily make a claim against your motor insurance policy. Claims can be made for incidents like a vehicle getting washed away, damage to the engine due to water logging, damages to the car body due to a fallen tree or any other damage.

During floods or incidents of water-logging, most people make an own-damage (OD) claim for their vehicle as cases of seized engines and damages to the body of the vehicle are quite common. In any such accident, it is important for you as the vehicle-owner to immediately contact the concerned insurer and inform them about the incident.

To people who have any such complaint, it is always advised not to move/start the vehicle from the spot of the accident without the knowledge of the insurer. Doing so gives the insurer the right to reject your claim. Apart from the OD claim, you may also file a third-party (TP) claim in case your vehicle is directly or indirectly involved in an accident.

Initiating the Claim Process

In order to submit a claim to the insurer, the first thing to do is inform the insurer over a call or mail. One must not delay the process of filling a claim once things get to normal even if you do not have all the required documents. Even those who lost their policy and other important documents of a vehicle – like registration and pollution certificate – due to the floods should contact their respective insurers to find a solution.

Most times during incidents like floods, insurers usually waive their policy on documents. All that the vehicle owner needs to know are some basic details such as vehicle owner, registration number and phone number. You may also contact the web insurance aggregators if you bought the policy from their website.

The author is the Chief Business Officer- General Insurance, article has been published in collaboration with Policybazaar. Opinions expressed are those of the author.

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