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Prevent Your Car Accident from Becoming a Wreck

Money-Guy 08-06-2010

An unfortunate truth is that all of us, most likely, at some point in our lives will have to deal with being in a car accident. Of course the safety and well-being of all those involved is the most important thing. Assuming, however, there are no irreplaceable losses or injuries, the next thing most of our minds go to are 1) costs and 2) dealing with the insurance companies.

This is another show that came about from life happening. Last Friday my wife was in a car accident and, thankfully, neither she nor anyone else were seriously injured. After taking her to the doctor and making sure everything was okay, my next thought immediately went to the ordeal of dealing with insurance companies and filing a claim. Before we get into that, however, you may want to brush up on this article from Edmunds.com titled What to Do After a Car Accident.

If you have been in an accident before, you know that it is important to take pictures at the scene, get the other driver’s information, and get any necessary information from the police officer. Next, depending on the circumstances, you contact your insurance company and then possibly the insurance company of the other driver. Once this has taken place, they usually send an insurance adjuster to determine the value of the damage.

BE CAREFUL when you receive a check from the insurance company! More often than not, they will send you a check based on the adjuster’s estimated value of damage. They want you to take this check and go on your merry way. While it may seem tempting at the time, that check may not be adequate to cover the full cost of your vehicle’s repair. Often there are issues that the adjuster won’t catch through a visual inspection.

As you listen to the show, I also address some issues such as how to get a rental car that actually matches your needs, not just the cheapest one you think your insurance will cover. You need to know your policy and also be willing to ask! Additionally, there are types of very affordable coverage you can add to your policy that will protect you in the event of minor but annoying instances such as chips on your windshield, etc. I also go on to explain some of the intricacies of dealing with a high-risk insurance company  and what you can do to make sure you are protected.

To close out the show, I share this article from Yahoo! news addressing credit card fees and rewards programs and what I think is a crazy view of those of us who are thrifty and saavy with money.

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