How To Make Your Insurance Claim Smooth
You may not be familiar with the idea of transporting your vehicle across the country. This is why it is natural to wonder "What happens if my car is damaged during transportation?" Statistics show that auto transport damage is very unlikely when you work with an experienced and reliable auto transport company. Accidents are still possible, however. Protect your vehicle by learning about the insurance coverage of your auto transport company, taking precautions to minimize damage, and knowing how to document your damages to avoid any problems when you file an auto transport insurance claim.
- Even though it is often tedious, understanding the transport Terms and Conditions can be a huge advantage. It outlines what a carrier is and cannot be held responsible for during transport. This information will be readily available to you from reputable auto transporters. Make sure you take the time and read it.
- Properly preparing your vehicle for travel will help reduce transport damage. Secure any parts that are loose or hanging from after-market accessories. Remove antennas, valuable personal items, fragile items, and automatic toll devices if possible. Enclosed transport is an option if you own an antique or high-value vehicle. Although they are more expensive, they offer greater protection.
- "Before photos" are extremely helpful. Take clear photos or videos of your vehicle at pickup if you have the ability. If you need to file an insurance claim, a picture of the vehicle's pre-transport condition will make all the difference.
- When it comes to proving the validity of your auto transport insurance claim, the Bill of Lading (also known as the BOL) is your best friend. Because it records the vehicle's condition at pick up and delivery, the BOL is an important piece of evidence that insurance companies use to establish liability. The trucker is responsible for inspecting your vehicle at pick-up and noting any deficiencies on the BOL. Before you sign the BOL or release the vehicle, it is your responsibility to review and verify the trucker's notes of any pre-existing damage. You should be provided a copy by the trucker of the pickup BOL. Ask for one if it isn't provided.
- The BOL is again in force. No matter how dirty or wet the vehicle's surface, you should inspect it as soon as possible. Technically, there is no time limit for inspecting vehicles upon delivery. However, be thorough and considerate of the trucker's busy schedules. Take the time to inspect your vehicle carefully, particularly in the areas that are less obvious like your roof and lower bumpers. Before signing the BOL, note any new damages or conditions exceptions. At delivery, make sure you get another copy of your BOL. You should have two copies of the BOL, one from pickup and one from delivery. Do not withhold payment to the trucker if damages are discovered. Transport tariffs must all be paid at delivery according to law. You may be sued by the trucker for nonpayment and you will not be able to file a claim on auto transport insurance.
- Take photos of any damage to the vehicle and gather the Bill of Ladings. Then, contact the brokerage or auto transport company you are dealing with by calling, emailing, or both. There are different policies among insurance companies regarding the time limits for filing claims. Avoid delaying reporting any damage or problems.
You can take control of your auto transport experience. While there's nothing you can do after the damage has been done, there are many things you can do to make sure you and your vehicle are well taken care of in case there are any bumps.