Your car insurance should cover you – even in a total loss situation

Many people whose cars recently got damaged in the recent fire mishap in Bangalore and Chennai are being rescued by their car comprehensive insurance policy. Either people have faced partial damages or total damages i.e. damage beyond repair to the vehicle.

During such situations, usually it is not possible to think of the next steps. You will only want to arrive at a solution to cover the losses you have suffered. For such situations, here are a few steps you can take immediately, which will help you get closer to getting a solution:

  1. Inform your insurance company immediately – it must be definitely be within -48 hours.

  2. Support the insurance company with all necessary documents. In case the vehicle is fully burnt, you may have to submit an FIR, and an RC copy and if the RC copy is also burnt you’ll need to apply for a duplicate of the same or cancel the RC from the RTO. Additionally, you may require an NOC from your financier (if any), a KYC and a few more documents before the claim money is paid. Also, if you were wise enough to buy an RTI (Return to Invoice) add-on with your comprehensive car insurance policy, you simply get the invoice value of your car without any depreciation which is almost equal to buying the same car all anew.

  3. In case of partial burns/damage to your car i.e. it can be repaired, and the cost of repair is below 75% of IDV, you may have to get an inspection of your car done. You’ll be lucky if your insurance company has a digital claims method like a self-inspection process which can be done through one’s smartphone, within minutes.

  4. Post that, if the claim is approved, the person gets the claim money directly in their account.

Now these were things that one would do after a mishap happens. But to make sure one is covered fully by an insurance company during such incidents, make sure of the following:

  1. Choose the Right IDV (Insured Declared Value) – In motor insurances, the most common mistake that a customer makes while looking for a car insurance with a lower premium is reducing the IDV (Insured Declared Value) below the right market value the car should have. Because at the time of claims, the maximum amount the customer can claim is the IDV amount and if that is low, you’re in for a low claim money value. IDV usually drops by around 10 percent annually, on which your annual premium is calculated. It is very important to choose a cover that provides the best IDV along with the premium comparison.

  2. Speed of claim settlement – No one would like to wait for the recovery of their losses after such incidents, right? To save yourself from the long wait, you can research on the past claim settlement reports of the company, which will tell you about the speed the claims are settled in the company.

  3. Approachability – No one wants to wait for hours to talk to the customer care in such situations. You are frantic and a quick turnaround on solutions is what you will be looking for. Choose a company that provides assistance 24×7 and is available to respond to you at any time you want.

  4. Pick up /Drop facility – Many of the car owners were left stranded as they did not have a wallet on them and due to the crowded situation. In such a situation, it is important that your policy covers a pick and drop facility, which will help you from being stranded.

  5. Add-ons Offered – A comprehensive policy without the right addons is half work done! Addons like Return to Invoice (RTI) are especially helpful in case of situations like total damage or theft where in one gets the cost of buying a new car i.e. the invoice value of the car (the price at which the car was bought at), instead of just the IDV.

Everyone wants to ensure that there is a safety net they can fall back on in times of disasters. And a comprehensive car insurance with the right addons can be just that!


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By Ajitpal Jandoo, Technical Head Network, Digit Insurance

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