Revisited December 2020
After a car crash the last thing you want is a lengthy, confusing and time-consuming process for a claim. Add to that the difficulty of recovering uninsured losses, which your typical main motor insurance policy won’t cover you for following an accident which is not your fault.
Step up Motor Legal Protection to help you ease the financial burden, as it will help you recover uninsured losses back. Our guide will show you how to handle the car insurance claim process, as well as explain how you can claim for your other losses and if you don’t already have Motor Legal Protection, then take a look at our page to find out more: visit Motor Legal Protection.
First, let’s get into what Motor Legal Protection is and why we think it’s a good idea.
The wider and more commonly known market name for this product is Uninsured Loss Recovery.
Should you be involved in a motor incident which is not your fault, you will find you will be out of pocket financially and therefore this policy is design to act on your behalf to recover your uninsured losses; so as the title suggests;
· Uninsured – you are not insured under your main motor insurance
· Loss – due to the non-fault motor incident, you will have incurred a financial cost
· Recovery – Bestpricefs will arrange for a legal representative to stand in your shoes and claim back your financial losses
Some examples of Uninsured Losses you could sustain following a motor incident are;
· Personal Injury – should you or anybody in the vehicle sustain an injury, compensation can be claimed
· Personal Possessions – should you damage items such as glasses, clothes etc, you can claim back the cost of replacement
· Motor Excess – this can be claimed back too as your main insurer will expect you to pay this even if the motor incident wasn’t your fault
· Medical Treatment – should you need ongoing medical treatment following the injury this will form part of the personal injury claim
· Loss of Earnings – should you have time off due to an injury or attending court
· Vehicle Repairs – if you only have Third Party only or Third Party Fire and Theft motor insurance cover
· Legal Fees – costs to fight the case can form part of the claim recovery
Don’t admit fault
Firstly, do not admit fault at the scene. This includes saying “sorry” for the accident. This may be your natural reaction – after all, none of us wish harm to the other person, even if they were the cause of the accident – but apologising is effectively an admission of fault. Liability for the accident will be determined by the insurance companies, and sometimes the police, depending on the circumstances.
Inform the police
If anyone is injured then make sure to call an ambulance or get someone to call for you. If this is the case then you are legally obliged to provide your insurance details, name and address to someone at the scene, and you should also report the incident to the police. When the police arrive at the scene, have your driving licence and insurance certificate or cover note ready to show to them. If you don’t have these on you then you’ll have seven days to take the documents to your nearest police station.
Exchange names and details with the other driver(s) and try to get details from any independent witnesses who were at the scene. If a driver refuses to give you their details then your insurer may be able to trace them through their vehicle’s number plate, so make sure to note that down.
If it’s not a serious incident, then it’s still important to take as many pictures as possible. These should be of your vehicle, the other vehicles involved, and even the stretch of road the accident occurred on. Make sure to take extensive pictures of all angles of the vehicles, just in case the other driver tries to claim the incident was your fault.
Ask witnesses for their contact details
If anybody witnesses the incident (someone you do not know), ask them for their contact details as they are a non-biased witness which can sway blame in the insurers eyes.
Submit any footage of the event
If you have a dash cam recording of the accident, this will also be very valuable for your insurer.
Speak to your insurer…
If you’re looking to make a claim on your policy, then you should call your insurer and inform them of the accident immediately. You should share with them all the details you’ve collected, including witness statements, driver details and photos of the incident, by email or whatever source the insurer recommends.
Even if you’re not making a claim
If you’re not making a claim through your motor insurer, then it’s still extremely important to let your insurer know about the accident. Unreported accidents may mean that you’ll be refused cover in future. Provide details about the scene and the other driver(s) involved. Ensure that you clearly state that it is for information only and you are not looking to make a claim through your policy.
This should be done within a “reasonable time” of the accident happening. What exactly that timeframe is will depend on your car insurance policy wording, but if in doubt, get it along to them within the week. It’ll also be easier for yourself to do it sooner rather than later, as details of the incident will be fresh in your mind.
Recovering uninsured losses
As mentioned above, your insurance company will be able to handle repairs to your car (if you have fully comprehensive insurance as they will claim this from the other driver’s insurer. However, there will be a range of other losses that you may have to deal with after an incident, and this is where a Motor Legal protection policy can help.
Motor Legal Protection is only designed to help you if you are involved in an motor incident which is not your fault.
These policies provide a limit, usually around £100,000, up to which they’ll cover your legal costs for uninsured loss recovery. These legal costs go towards employing a law firm to take your case forward and recover the uninsured losses you’ve suffered from the other party’s insurer.
As mentioned, recovering your uninsured losses will only be possible if you are not to blame for the accident. To determine this, claims are judged on a “reasonable prospects of success” basis. This means that the insurer will only take forward claims which are more likely than not to succeed, based on expert legal advice. In comparison to using a “no-win, no-fee” type service, the benefit of reclaiming your losses through this route is that you’ll get 100% of your compensation.
On top of this, some policies will provide further benefits than just recovery of your uninsured losses. For example, if you don’t have a replacement vehicle included as part of your car insurance policy then your legal protection will be able to help. With Best Price Financial Services, you’ll get a replacement vehicle for as long as it takes until yours is back on the road, or you find a new one. The replacement vehicle will be on one that’s comparable to your own, so if you were driving a BMW X3 then you won’t find yourself stuck with a Daewoo Matiz…
What if it was my fault?
In the unfortunate event of an accident that was your fault, then you can minimize the disruption to your life by adding our 14 days Courtesy Vehicle Hire for just £19.99 which entitles you to a Category A vehicle following fire, theft, vandalism, accidental damage or an accident. To protect yourself still further, you can add Motor Prosecution Defence for just £5.50 which provides an additional £100,000 of legal representation if you face prosecution for a wide range of motoring offences and Motor Contract Disputes should you find yourself in a dispute over a vehicle you have purchased, sold or hired.
What if the driver is uninsured or untraceable?
Recovering uninsured losses can be difficult when the driver is uninsured. This is primarily because the losses you’ve suffered are usually recovered from the other driver’s insurance company. If your losses cannot be recovered from the other driver themselves, then your claim will be taken through the Motor Insurance Bureau.
The Motor Insurance Bureau receives funding from insurers to cover situations like these and therefore can provide a source of compensation for drivers hit by others who don’t have insurance or who can’t be traced.
As in all other instances, if your claim has to be taken through this route then you should try and do what you can to keep these losses to a minimum, as you’ll only be able to get back what you would have reasonably suffered. Keep in mind that in instances where the driver is untraceable, you’ll only be able to claim for injury through the bureau.