Nothing ruins a vacation quite like getting into a car accident. You’re trying to relax when the most stressful thing happens to you!
It’s made even more upsetting since you’re in an unfamiliar place. But instead of freaking out, take a breath.
Getting into an accident on vacation in a rental car isn’t much different from an accident at home. There’s probably going to be some extra paperwork, but other than that, there’s no need to panic. Instead, follow these 4 steps and then get back to relaxing.
1. Call the Authorities
After an accident, your first call should be to 911.
Sure, you might live in a state where you aren’t required to report an accident. But since you’re on vacation, you probably don’t know the laws in that area.
Even if it’s just a minor fender bender, call the authorities and get an official police report. Having that can only help your insurance claim case.
You might find when you get home that you were more injured than you thought. If you don’t have a police report, it will be much harder to fight for your insurance money.
2. Contact the Rental Car Company
After calling the police, immediately call the rental car company. They likely have a protocol of actions you need to take after an accident.
It’s important to follow every measure on the lease agreement. However, be careful to read every document they give you carefully before signing it. You might even want to call a lawyer to review it first.
You don’t want to inadvertently sign something that admits to your liability. That could end up costing you thousands of dollars.
3. Notify Your Insurance Company
Even if you have insurance through the rental car company, you should still contact your regular insurance company. You might have rental coverage through them which could cover a new rental car.
You can also ask them if they’ll file the insurance claim for you. Depending on your insurance, you might have to file a claim on a rental yourself.
4. Get Medical Attention
Many people are hesitant to seek medical attention after an accident if they only have minor injuries. Even though you want to get back to your vacation as soon as possible, take the time to get checked out by a car accident doctor.
You might be thinking that a minor ache is something you can get looked at when you get home. But sometimes injuries are actually worse than they initially appear.
Plus, it’s important to get official documentation of any injuries right away. This will help your insurance claim case.
What to Do After a Car Accident on Vacation: The Takeaway
Getting into a car accident on vacation is certainly a buzzkill. But if you stay calm and follow these steps, you’ll be back lounging on the beach in no time.
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