I just stopped for a red light. I was sitting there waiting for the light to turn green, when all of a sudden I was rear ended. What do I do now?
Remain Calm. If possible, move out of the way of traffic.
Make sure everyone is okay; if not call 911.
Exchange information with the other party: (Hint: get out your phone!)
Name & address of owner – from the registration
Name & address of driver if different – from their license
Year, make & model & color of the other car – also from registration
Registration number - the license plate
Damage to the other car
Note Date & Time, and where accident happened.
This is when your cell phone comes in handy: take pictures of the other party's license and registration and damage to the cars. Pictures can be sent to: email@example.com
If your car was towed, ask for name & address of tow yard or garage.
Discuss the accident with your agent (call us at 800-649-3252 or 781-659-2262).
Call the claim into the insurance company. (Click here for a list of our carriers). They will want to speak with you directly, and coordinate the repairs.
The RMV has a standard crash report (linked here) which you should complete for any accident where damages could exceed $1,000.
Is your car drivable? If you buy rental coverage on your policy, you can rent a car when your car goes in for repairs; if it is not drivable, coverage begins immediately. Confirm with the adjuster the amount of time approved for the rental.
If you do not buy rental coverage, and the other driver caused the accident, you should be eligible for rental coverage under the other person’s insurance. Contact the other carrier; we can assist you with this, but cannot represent you legally. Usually they won't authorize a rental until they hear from their own customer.
If you do not have collision coverage on your vehicle and the accident was caused by another party, you can file a claim with the other person’s insurance company for thedamage to your vehicle & always request rental car coverage to be used when the car is in the shop (or not drivable).
If you do not have collision and the accident was your fault, your insurance will still pay for damage to the other person's property under the 'property damage' portion of your insurance.
What to expect from the insurance company:
After the claim has been reported to the carrier, a claim representative will contact you to assist with coordinating the repairs.
This representative will assign an adjustor (the person who will actually see the damage at your home, workplace, or garage); or may ask you to visit a drive-in claims center in some cases.
The claims adjustor will coordinate with the claims representative the cost of the damages, or if the car is a total loss. Bear in mind the claims adjustor can only price for the damages that they see. Once your car is in for actual repairs, the shop may find more damages. This is fairly common: in these cases, your garage should contact the company directly for a supplemental appraisal.
Once the claim representative has the information back from the adjustor they will contact you with figures to either repair the car, or in some cases, they have to total the car. If that is the case, the claim is then transferred to a total loss unit, which will contact you with the payout figures.
The main things to remember in the case of an accident are:
Make sure all injured are taken care of, keep them calm and call 911 to get help out there as soon as possible.
Cars can be repaired or replaced.
Use your agent as a resource to keep the process moving if things don't go as you expect.