Sometimes, road accidents just happen no matter how safe you are. Thus, it’s important to know how to make a car insurance claim to save you the cost. We guide you through the step-by-step process.
While you can’t ascertain a flawless, risk-free life, you can certainly shield yourself and your loved ones with the right car insurance cover. Not only does car insurance protect you and your passengers, it also protects your beloved vehicle. Imagine the soaring expenses that will come with your dent-ridden car!
Insurance enables you to claim remittance against your premiums in case you fall prey to car theft or road accidents. So, if the plight of your precious car is making you blur sotong, see our step-by-step guide on how to make a car accident claim in Singapore.
Table of contents
- How exactly does car insurance claims work?
- Four-step guide to making your car insurance claim
- Understanding the different types car insurance
- Car insurance claim cover: detailed coverage and exclusions
How exactly does car insurance claims work?
Simply put, your insurance provider will pay for the cost of repair or replace your vehicle and in some instances pay in cash the amount loss or damage in exchange for your premiums in case your car gets stolen or damaged. Your insurance provider also determines your premium amount, depending on your driving profile. Here are the factors they consider:
- History of all claims filed in the past
- The number of years of driving experience
- A high No Claims Discount
- Age and occupation
- The make, model, and segment of your vehicle (SUV, sedan, or a hatchback)
You’d generally get higher premiums if your profile indicates you have a higher risk of being in a car accident. Thus, being a responsible driver is vital to your insurance application, regardless of the insurance type you choose.
What is No Claims Discount (NCD)?
No Claims Discount (NCDs) are given automatically to a person who hasn't made a claim under their current or previous insurance policy for one year or so. In other words, it lowers your premiums for the following year.
By offering this discount, your insurer gives you incentive to drive safely. Insurers follow a standard procedure when setting your NCD, considering the type of vehicle your own (private or commercial/motorcycle), and the length of your no claims period.
Below is a table showing how NCDs are determined by insurers at large.
|Private Car Policies||Commercial Vehicle & Motorcycle Policies|
|One year with no claim: 10% discount on renewal||1 year with no claim: 10% discount on renewal|
|Two years with no claim: 20% discount on renewal||Two years with no claim: 15% discount on renewal|
|Three years with no claim: 30% discount on renewal||Three years or longer: 20% discount on renewal|
|Four years with no claim: 40% discount on renewal|
|Five years or longer: 50% discount on renewal|
A five-step guide to make a car insurance claim
It is natural for you to get shaken up and distressed after getting into an accident. The Motor Claims Framework (MCF) walks you through the necessary steps to help you deal with the situation calmly.
Take a look at these steps to make your insurance claim:
Step 1: In case of an accident, take deep breaths, gather your composure, and immediately call 995 for medical help if required.
Step 2: In the event that the accident involves two parties, acquire the information required to make your car insurance claim:
- National Registration Identity Card (NRIC), or Foreign Identification Number (FIN)
- Telephone Number
- Car insurance companies involved
- Vehicle plate number
- Details of witnesses (if applicable)
- For people with a dashcam, the footage of the accident could help you strengthen your case
First, you will need the other driver’s contact information. If your insurer can prove that the other party caused the accident, they will make a claim against the other party’s insurer. Consequently, you will not lose your NCD.
Step 3: Take notes of the premise of your accident to further support your claim:
- Take photos of the scene: include any visible damage, licence plate numbers of both vehicles, the area surrounding the accident spot, and road or weather conditions at the time.
- Check if you need to contact the police: You may have to contact the police if you accidentally damage a government vehicle or property, foreign vehicle, pedestrian, or cyclist. A police investigation will also be required for a hit-and-run case, vandalism, or car fire.
- Make an accident report: Take note of the entire scenario with all the key details pertaining to the accident. If possible, note the intensity of the impact and the extent of the injury induced by the accident (if applicable).
Step 4: Report the accident to your insurer within the 24-hour window:
- Call the insurance hotline: Aftering collating all the required information, call your insurance company via a 24/7 car insurance hotline number provided to you. If you don’t have your insurer’s hotline, call the tp hotline or one motoring hotline to get immediate assistance regarding your insurance claim. They will provide you with ways to connect with your insurer.
- Make a claim within the first 24 hours: Report the incident to your insurer via the hotline within the 24 hours from the time of the accident. If you fail to report the incident in the 24-hour window, you may end up prejudicing your claim.
- Failure to report an accident within the right time frame is a breach of the insurance contract. The insurer can refute any liability towards your claim due to this, and as a result, you will no longer be covered by the policy.
- The insurer will curtail your No Claims Discount when you renew your policy
- In dire cases, the insurer may even decline the renewal of your insurance policy
Insurance companies often have tie-ups with tow truck service partners. So, you can request tow truck assistance from these partner companies to further the cause of your claim.
Pro tip: If you don't absolutely have to move your vehicle, leave it where it is. Moving your vehicle could jeopardise your insurance cover as the other driver’s insurance provider could dispute your claim.
The best course of action is to inform your insurer of the incident via the hotline. Naturally, if the accident occurs in the middle of a busy road, move it to safety by all means.
Step 5: Complete your claim with an in-person report
- Visit your insurance provider’s accident reporting centre in Singapore: You must visit the accident reporting centre to report the incident within the first 48 hours. You will have to fill out several forms, so remember to carry your documents and evidence collected (as in step 2) from the accident’s site.
- Contact an authorised workshop to get a fix: After reporting the incident, take your car to a workshop authorised by your insurer. The workshop will run a repair assessment and provide you with all the paperwork necessary to file your claim.
Insurers usually validate your claim even if you get your car fixed from an unauthorised workshop. However, it may lengthen the entire process since your insurer will have to send surveyors to the workshop to examine the damage and suggested repairs.
Therefore, it is always better to visit an authorised workshop to ensure no complications arise in the claims process.
Pro Tip: If you get into an accident without the involvement of a third party, check the intensity of the damage caused to your vehicle. If the damage is insignificant compared to the NCD you could get, assess whether it's worth claiming at all.
Understanding the different types of insurance covers
Third-Party Only (TPO)
TPO is the cheapest insurance cover that you can get in Singapore. TPO is ideal for those who intend to part with an old vehicle, or who just want to keep up with legal requirements.
It essentially covers any injuries or damages you cause to third-parties. It will cover the damage repairs you have caused on a third party’s vehicle or property, but not your own vehicle.
Third-Party, Fire and Theft
Third Party, Fire and Theft far surpasses a regular TPO in terms of coverage. Apart from covering the damage caused to the third party,. Lastly, the policy shields you from any harm caused by fire, theft, and vandalism.
A comprehensive cover, as the name suggests, provides the most extensive benefits by far. This policy covers you for everything, ranging from death or injury to medical expenses or property damage costs incurred by the third party. Additionally, just like the Third Party, Fire and Theft, it covers you for fire, theft, and vandalism.
Given the coverage offered, it is easy to believe that a comprehensive cover is the most sought-after option in Singapore. Besides, the majority of banks only grant car loans to those who get comprehensive cover for their vehicle.
Car insurance claim cover: detailed coverage and exclusions
When choosing an insurance policy, it is crucial to understand what it covers and how relevant it is to your needs. Here's a detailed list of coverage and exclusions for the three most common types of insurance covers in Singapore.
|TPO||Third Party, Fire and Theft||Comprehensive|
|Third-party claim in case of death or injuryDamage to other parties' property||Third party-claim in case of death or injuryDamage to other parties' propertyVehicle damage/loss from fire, theft, or vandalism||Third-party claim in case of death or injuryDamage to other parties' propertyVehicle damage/loss from fire, theft, or vandalismAccidental damage to your vehicleWindscreen damageDamage arising from riot, strike, and/or civil commotionPersonal accident cover (private cars only)Medical expenses (private cars only)|
A car is an important milestone of your financial journey. When you invest in a car, it is important to minimise the risk on your investment. Compare and choose your ideal car insurance with SingSaver.