Material Damage Claims
Road traffic accidents * are the most common of accidents and when it comes to personal injury claims *, the most common on claims for compensation. Road traffic accidents * can occur in a number of ways – car accidents, bus accidents, motorbike accidents, bicycle accidents, etc. * The most common of these being car accidents *, while most car accident injury claims * are relating to injuries sustained as a result of the accident, not all car accidents end in injury. What do you do if you are involved in a car accident * but you haven’t sustained any injuries, but your car was damaged as a result. The damages to your car are called Material Damages. Below is a guide to material damage claims for those who have been involved in a car accident.
What can I do if my car is damaged in a car accident but I suffer no personal injury *?
In cases where the accident is caused by another individual than the other person’s insurance company will be responsible for the damage. Immediately following a car accident where your car has been damaged, you should call the Gardaí and report the accident. A Garda may attend the scene of the accident, depending on the severity of the crash etc.
Following you have reported this to the Gardaí, it is important that you take note and record any important information at the scene of the car accident:
- take photos of damage to both vehicles.
- take photos of the position of the cars at the time of impact.
- note the position of any CCTV cameras
What costs can be recovered following material damage to my car?
In cases where the car accident was not your fault and your car was damaged, usually you should be able to reclaim the following from the driver at fault:
- Cost of repair to your car
- Car hire, if you needed to hire a car while yours if not fit for the road
- Value of the car in cases where a car is a write off following an accident
- Cost of damage to personal property in the car that may have been damaged or broken in the accident
- Towing and storage costs, if you could not drive your car following the accident.
Assessing the cost of the material damage to your vehicle
After the accident, you will need to have your car assessed at a local garage, they can provide you with an estimate of the cost of repair of the material damage. It is also common practice for the insurance company of the other driver to arrange for their own motor assessor to assess your vehicle and the damages to it and suggest a settlement amount to you.
If there is a dispute and you cannot agree on a compensation amount for the material damages to your car offered by the other driver’s insurance company then you can appoint your own motor assessor to assess the damage and suggest an amount.
In normal circumstances, the agreement can usually be reached in the difference in the estimate of the material damage between the two quotes.
Moving forward with a Material Damage Claim
If agreement cannot be reached on how much compensation is owed to you or if liability (who is at fault) is an issue between you and the other driver then to move forward with a material damage claim, you will need to have court proceedings issued to move the matter forward and come to a resolution. Your own insurance company should represent you in such proceedings and the costs of such proceedings should be covered by your policy of insurance.
The person who caused the accident does not have insurance or fled the scene without, what can I do?
In cases where your car was damaged and the driver fled the scene, you will need to contact the Motor Insurers Bureau of Ireland (MIBI) who cover accidents involving uninsured or untraced drivers. In MIBI cases you must cover the first €250.00 of material damages and the MIBI should pay the balance.
If you have been involved in a car accident and are not sure about your next steps to recover the cost of material damages to your car or you have been involved in a car accident and wondering what to do, feel free to call Piarais Neary on +35316499900 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and tell him about your case.