If you are involved in a boating accident that causes damage or perhaps injuries to you and your passengers, filing a claim seems to be the natural first step. However, you must take certain steps for you to maximize the chances your claim will go through quickly. Here are some of the basic steps you must take in their proper order so you can get the just compensation you deserve.
Report the Accident to the Authorities
Any marine accident that causes damage or injury must be reported to the authorities governing the waterways. This is a necessary step to provide an official account of what occurred to cause the accident. The officer in charge will take down the information from all parties involved in a non-injury accident and help determine who was at fault. The authorities will take down your version of events. It is important to be truthful and to use language that best represents what you believed happened.
Seek Medical Attention
If someone is injured, you should call an ambulance first so that they can be properly treated. Do not move the person who is injured, but make them as comfortable as possible until help arrives. While most accidents result in non-life threatening injuries, you should be extra careful of any injury to the head or one that causes excessive bleeding.
Photograph the Accident
For non-injury accidents, you should take photographs of your boat as soon as possible. You may want to do so right after insurance information has been exchanged. Your goal is to document everything that occurred so that you can file a proper claim. Make sure you get their license plate number, VIN, contact information from witnesses, as well as the it insurance.
Once you have all the information down, you can then start the process of filing a claim. You will probably want to begin with your insurance agent who can provide you with the right guidance. This will help to ensure that you follow the recommended steps.
How to Maximize Your Boat Accident Case
Proper documentation and a consistent story of what occurred are two vital steps in maximizing your chances in getting a claim processed in a quick fashion. Of course, there are some simple tips you can follow to help the process along.
- Keep quiet if an insurance adjuster arrives at the accident
- Follow up with any injuries received, even minor ones that needed treatment
- Fill out all appropriate forms
- Think over the first settlement offer, especially if it doesn’t cover all the bills
If you are having any difficulties, find an experienced attorney. They can help you work with the insurance company to get what is due. A good attorney will offer an initial free consultation so they can advise you about their services. You may need one if the insurance company is not offering you the compensation needed to repair the damages and fully recover from the injuries received.