About three million people in the U.S. are injured yearly in car accidents. If you’ve been in a car accident, you might wonder about the next steps for insurance.

How do you file a car insurance claim, and where should you begin? While it might seem intimidating to know where to start, there are ways to help. Read this guide on how to file a car insurance claim in Montana today.

The Day of the Accident

Trade information with other drivers and passengers. See if there are any key witnesses.

Ask the police for a copy of the police report once it’s ready. Provide the other person with your contact information and insurance information.

Take photos of the road conditions, damage, and license plates. Have a picture of the other person’s insurance card. Check the area for road signs and nearby intersections.

Check Your Insurance Policy

Check the fine print of your insurance before filing a claim. If anything’s too confusing, it’s best to reach out to a Missoula injury attorney. You’ll want to file a claim in time to avoid it being denied.

They can help guide you through the process and make sense of your rights. Your car insurance will detail your responsibilities in an accident and what they’ll cover.

You might need to pay a deductible to fix your vehicle if you’re found at fault. If you’re not at fault, your insurance company might help you recover the deductible from the at-fault driver.

Even if the at-fault driver doesn’t have liability insurance, you can make a car insurance claim under the uninsured motorist provision. All car insurance policies in Montana have uninsured motorist coverage unless you reject it in writing.

Modified Comparative Fault

Under Montana law, there’s the modified comparative fault theory. This states that the amount of damage a plaintiff can recover is reduced by a percentage reflecting fault.

The percentage needs to be under 50%. If it’s over 50%, the plaintiff can’t recover damages.

Contact Your Insurance Company

You can contact your car insurance company or have your Bozeman injury lawyer call them on your behalf. Insurance adjusters are too quick to want a settlement agreement.

Don’t let insurance companies take advantage of you. Having an injury lawyer on your side can ensure you receive the compensation you need and deserve.

Provide Them With the Necessary Information

It’s best to have the necessary information for insurance, such as all documentation and paperwork. Include photos of the damage and a copy of the police report.

Include negligence on the other driver’s part, names of all passengers and drivers, the time and date, weather, and the event of the accident. State the damage to the vehicle, your policy number, and your name.

Sue the Other Person

You could choose to contact a lawyer and sue the other driver. Ensure you bring all paperwork, photos, and information about the accident to the meeting.

Have contact information for the witnesses, photos from the scene, and a police report. If it’s a small car accident, you might be able to go to small claims court.

There’s also the right to subpoena witnesses, including the other driver, the insurer’s claims adjuster, and others. Include certified estimates for the cost of repairs as well.

Visit a Certified Repair Shop

The insurance company and other drivers need to know the extent of damage and costs. Don’t make repairs until the insurance claim has been settled.

You’ll want to go with a certified repair shop that the insurance company approves. Pick a repair shop with specific timelines for repairs and guaranteed prices. Go to another shop if you believe they’re inflating the cost of repairs.

Receive Medical Care

Receive the necessary medical care. If you don’t, your claim might be denied. If you wait too long, insurance might be suspicious of the claim.

Never try to assume what happens after an accident if you aren’t sure. Never overshare information with insurance, either.

Work With the Auto Adjuster

Your insurance company will appoint single or multiple auto adjusters. They’ll contact you within one to three days of the filing.

They’ll assess the damage to the vehicle, have an inspection, and look at any personal injury claims. They might also speak with witnesses and look at police reports.

What To Do if the Claim Is Denied

Reach out to a Billings accident lawyer immediately. Ask the insurance company why the insurance claim was denied. It’s best to receive their response in writing.

Sometimes, it could be a valid reason, or their ruling is incorrect. Review your coverage and submit a letter showing how the evidence doesn’t match their ruling. If you’re uncomfortable disputing the denial, reach out to an attorney for legal advice.

Why Call a Lawyer Immediately After an Accident?

You’re more likely to receive fair compensation when you contact a Bozeman accident lawyer. They’ll work with you and your insurance to ensure you receive the medical care and auto insurance claims you deserve.

Attorneys can also build a strong case making it more likely you’ll walk away with the highest settlement. Never make a statement about the car accident without your lawyer present. Lawyers can help you decide what factors are relevant to a legal claim.

Understanding How to File a Car Insurance Claim in Montana

This guide provides an overview of how to file a car insurance claim in Montana. Of course, each case is unique and will vary.

Your best option is to contact a Billings personal injury attorney. Were you recently in an accident and unsure what next steps to take?

Let us help you. Here at Heenan & Cook, we believe in receiving results for you.

Our practice areas include car accidents, medical misdiagnoses, and much more. Don’t delay in contacting us today to get started! We’re conveniently located in Bozeman, Kalispell, Billings, and Missoula.