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Bro! Where is My Car?

Neha Gadoo Neha Gadoo 15 September 2016

Insurance companies may reject a stolen car claim after drawing a conclusion that a person may be responsible for its disappearance. Jumping to such conclusions is considered to be an act of bad faith on the part of the insurance company.

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You walk out of an apartment and arrive at the spot where your car was parked "safely", and now it’s not there anymore. There is a pit-in-your-stomach feeling. You call the police, lodge a FIR and then what? Hundreds of thoughts haunt you – the day you bought the car, how happy you were, the feeling of how you should have never left your home altogether.

Subsequent to all this you immediately check your car insurance policy (undoubtedly there is no possibility to get a claims check for your car the day it's stolen). Now, the catch is, how to go about raising a claim?

Before making a claim, know what you will get.

Now that you are planning to inform your insurance company and raise a claim for your stolen car, remember that you will receive only as much as the IDV of your car.

IDV is the current market value of the two-wheeler. In case your two-wheeler suffers a total loss in an accident, or is stolen, IDV is the compensation that the insurance company is liable to pay to the policyholder. And if you are unfamiliar with its calculation then you can always ask the insurance representative to walk you through it.

How to go About Making a Car Insurance Claim

For making a car insurance claim, it is necessary to inform the police as well the insurance company within 24 hours. Raising a stolen car insurance claim is easy. You just need to contact them anytime via a toll-free number. After taking a stolen car insurance claim over the phone, the inspection team will begin the process of investigating your claim by asking some of the following questions:

Where was your car parked when you last saw it?

Did you file a police report? – (Police report is a MUST in a stolen car insurance claim)

They will verify the year make and model.

They may ask you if there were any security devices on the car such as a GPS or any other locating devices.

Your insurance company will wait for a document that states your car is untraceable by the police. You will be paid the insured declared value of your stolen car under the comprehensive coverage of your insurance policy.

Always use a reputable source in order to get the most accurate value. Once you have received a theft insurance claim settlement you will be asked to sign possession of the car over to the insurance company.

Investigation Involved Once You Raise a Claim

All insurance companies will thoroughly investigate about your stolen car claim before arising to a conclusion. This can include:

  • Cross checking to look for any signs of financial trouble and any evidence that you may have committed fraud,
  • Looking at your current employment status
  • Talking to friends, family or roommates that may know something about the theft to verify (or disprove) your story,
  • Speaking with witnesses to determine where was it seen last time,
  • Reviewing every statement you make to the police to make sure your statements match with theirs.

Insurance companies may reject a stolen car claim after drawing a conclusion that a person may be responsible for its disappearance. Jumping to such conclusions is considered to be an act of bad faith on the part of the insurance company.

An insurance company must review a car insurance policy claim fairly and in good faith, and if they are denying the claim irrationally then you may wait for the court settlement. You can even lodge a complaint with Integrated Grievance Management System (IGMS). It facilitates online registration of policyholders' complaints and helps track their status.

If you believe your car insurance company is low-balling you with its actual cash valuation of your vehicle or if you feel you face denial, it is always in your best interests to review your claim with an insurance lawyer who can deal with the insurance company.

So, in the future, don't park your car in that neighborhood. Or don't leave it outside overnight, or maybe have a foolproof security system installed in your car. Obviously one cannot guarantee that their car won't be stolen but is always good to take preventive measures.

Neha Gadoo
Written by Neha Gadoo
Daring and Bold, Neha loves philosophy, trekking and walking bare feet in the rain. Loves talking and can stare out of a car window for hours continuously.