So your car has been stolen and you are very distressed… What next? The logical next step is to inform the insurance company and file a convincing theft claim. Here is how to do just that.
Anywhere in the world, if you stand in a crowd of car owners and drivers and throw a stone, it is very likely that you will hit someone who has, at least once in a lifetime, dealt personally with an instance of car theft.
According to the knowledge portal called Knoema.com, 165,690 Indian vehicles were burgled, stolen or broken into in 2013. When it comes to statistics regarding crimes related to vehicles, that same year, India stood at the unfortunate sixth position across the globe, behind only US, Brazil, Mexico, Italy and France.
Car Theft – a Crime no less than the rest
Though, as a crime, car theft is one of the most frequently occurring ones, it is by no means any less tension inducing than any of the others that are of a more grave nature.
Usually, a car is one of the biggest investments of your life – second to only a house. What model and make you choose not only reflects your personal tastes but also how much money you have spent in acquiring the same.
Burglary or theft related to such a possession is very heartbreaking, not only in terms of the loss of a cherished article but also in terms of the monetary setback it brings in its wake.
Insurance – a safety net like no other
If you are a buying a car in India, you are mandatorily required by the law to also purchase adequate insurance cover. That being the case, your car insurance cover is the one safety net that will prevent the theft of your vehicle from being a huge financial distress as well.
There is, of course, a certain procedure that you are required to follow when you discover the loss. But once that process is set in motion, and correctly at that, you can rest assured that the insurance company will reimburse you for the loss of your vehicle. Like most intricate procedures, the one important point to bear in mind is to follow the procedure as is required for filing a convincing car theft insurance claim. If you need help with the procedure, read on to find all the answers to your questions. Here is how to deal with car theft by filing a convincing insurance claim in 5 simple steps.
Follow the procedure – and the rules
With minimum delay,
1) File an FIR: Your first act as soon as you discover the theft of your car is to head to the relevant police station and lodge a complaint that is also known as the First Information Report or the FIR. This is the foundation of a compelling claim so under no circumstances are you to skip this step.
2) Inform your Insurer: The next step is to inform the insurance company soon after. The company has its own procedure to kick start once you have placed a call to them, so do that at the earliest.
3) Inform the RTO: You are also required to inform the transport department by law, so don’t forget to notify the Road Transportation Office (RTO). After all, they have to furnish you with the RTO transfer papers, one key document as you will see in the relevant documents’ list below.
4) Collect all the documents in this list: After you have informed all the relevant departments, you should start collecting all the required documents to make a claim. As soon as you have them all, submit them along with the requisite claim form duly filled in to the insurance company.
Every kind of claim will have its own particular set of documentation requirements. When you are faced with a case of car theft, you are required to submit the following:-
- The original FIR copy,
- Copy of the policy documents,
- The duly signed claim form,
- A copy of the driving license,
- The original car keys to the vehicle,
- Copy of the vehicle’s RC, and
- RTO transfer papers duly signed along with the necessary Forms (form 28, 29, 30 and 35).
5) Get the no-trace report: Do not forget to also acquire the no-trace report. Also known as the untraced vehicle report, you will get this document from the police saying that the vehicle cannot be located. Without this document, your car theft insurance is unlikely to be processed. Remember that the police needs almost a month from the date of the incident to generate this report.
Dealing with car theft with a convincing insurance claim
Simultaneously, as soon as you have informed the insurance company, it may employ specialist investigators to try to trace your car. This person or team will also help you get all the necessary documents from the police. These investigations and related measures may require up to 60 days, so don’t fret.
One more point to bear in mind is that, from the date of filing the FIR, if your car is not found, it will take about 90 days for the insurance company to generate the Insured Declared Value or IDV of your car. So don’t lose patience, that’s the nature of the procedure.
Once you have started the claim process in the required manner, following the correct steps, you have filed a credible car insurance claim. Do not despair that the entire procedure will take up to 3-4 months. Do your part well, and wait. You will soon have your claim sanctioned, provided you have followed all the rules.