After a car accident, you might be unsure of what steps to take. Checking for injuries, seeking medical attention, and taking photos of your damaged car are all crucial initial steps. You will also need to report your accident to your insurance company. If you have State Farm, they make it easy to file an insurance claim online or by phone and offer helpful tips to make sure you get back on the road and back into the groove of your daily life.
Insurance Claim Basics
Regardless of which insurance company you use, there are a few basic things to know about insurance coverage and how it relates to car accidents. Understanding these basics will help you claim all the damages related to your accident.
Ultimately, whether you can recover damages depends on whether you contributed to the accident. Texas follows a modified comparative fault rule. That means someone who contributed to their accident and injuries through their own negligence can still recover compensation as long as they were not more than 50% at fault. Their recoverable damages award will then be reduced in proportion to their degree of fault.
It’s also important to understand that you can recover damages for your injuries and financial losses in one of three ways:
- You can file an insurance claim with your own insurance;
- You can file a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company; or
- You can file a lawsuit directly against the at-fault driver.
Texas auto insurance policies automatically include $2,500 in Personal Injury Protection (PIP). PIP coverage pays for medical bills for you and your passengers, no matter who caused the accident. Medical payments coverage insurance is also available in Texas. Like PIP, it pays medical bills for you and your passengers, no matter who caused the accident. It will also pay if you were injured in someone else’s car or while walking or biking.
What if the driver doesn’t have enough insurance to cover accident injuries they cause to others? You could sue them for the remainder, or you could turn to your underinsured motorist coverage if you have it. Underinsured motorist coverage can cover medical bills when the other driver lacks insurance. In any case, a personal injury attorney can help you determine what option is best for you.
Filing a State Farm Insurance Claim in Texas
Before filing a claim, you need to determine the appropriate insurance company to file a claim with.
If someone else crashed into you, you’ll file a claim with their insurance provider. This is called a third-party claim.
On the other hand, you could decide to use your insurance rather than deal with the other person’s insurance company. If you have collision insurance, you can use it for car damage caused by someone else.
Whether you are a third party or a policyholder, the easiest way to file a Texas State Farm insurance claim is online. You can also file by phone by calling 800-732-5246. When filing a claim, try to have this information handy:
- Date, time, and location of the incident,
- Vehicles involved,
- Description of the incident,
- Description of damages, and
- Police accident report details.
In Texas, a police accident report must be prepared if anyone was injured or died in the accident or if there appears to be $1,000 or more worth of damage to someone’s property. If the police didn’t respond to the accident scene, you’ll need to file a report with the local authorities. It’s also important to remember that your insurance policy likely requires you to report any accident you’re in by a certain deadline. Check your policy information or call your provider to find out what your reporting requirements are.
Don’t Handle the Insurance Claim Process on Your Own
If you have more questions about how to file a State Farm insurance claim in Texas, the attorneys at Hartley Law Firm have the answers. Handling an insurance claim on your own can be daunting, and without an experienced personal injury lawyer, you might not receive all of the compensation you’re entitled to. Led by award-winning attorney Austin Hartley, the Hartley Law Firm team is dedicated to helping every client get the compensation they need to move forward after an accident. Contact Hartley Law Firm today to schedule a free consultation and learn more about how we can help you.