Car accidents are inconvenient at best and catastrophic at worse. Before many victims have even filed a claim, there are shady law firms showing up at your doorstep asking you to sign contracts, phone calls from unknown numbers lying to you about which doctors your insurance company allegedly requires you to see, and advertisements with gimics and false promises stuffed in your mailbox. Don’t be blood for the sharks. This blog series is meant to actually help victims of car crashes. And when the time is right, call us to set up a free consultation. I will meet you where it is convenient. I have helped thousands of victims recover millions of dollars in damages. I will give you an honest assessment of your case, and I will personally take your case to trial to get the results you deserve.
Regardless of the severity of crash, car seats must be replaced after a collision. The risk is simply too high to ignore. Your children are your most precious cargo, and even the most difficult insurance companies are more than willing to replace your seats. The process of replacing car seats may vary, but the basic steps are set forth below.
(1) Find Your Receipt
Insurance companies reimburse you for the car seat you owned, not the car seat you purchase. So before upgrading your car seat to the most expensive model, make sure you are aware that the reimbursement will be for the amount paid for the original receipt.
If you do not have your original receipt, look for a credit card payment that matches the market value of the seat. (Note: it is unlikely that an insurance company will reimburse for an expired car seat so check your expiration date. Car seats that are expired should not be used anyway; they must be discarded in the manner set forth below).
(2) Take Photographs
If your car seat is still in your possession, take photographs of the seat, its serial number, and its expiration date (usually located on the seat itself under the lining). Then, cut the straps of the seat. Take photos of the seat with the cut straps. It is crucial to cut the straps when discarded the car seat. The last thing you want is for the car seat to get into someone else’s hands and put someone else’s child at danger.
If the car seat is in a vehicle located at a tow yard, this can be accomplished when the vehicle is cleaned out. It is also a great time to document all the damage to the vehicle. Make sure to take a friend or family member with you that is mobile so that they can bend down and take photos underneath the vehicle too.
If the vehicle is already at a repair shop, have the repair shop complete this step for you. Most are more than willing to take the photos and cut the straps to save you the additional steps.
(3) Send the Receipt and Photos to the Insurance Company
Send the information to the insurance company so they can process the payment. A check should be provided to you within a couple of business days.
Stay turned for our next installment: Residual Diminished Value: Getting Full Reimbursement for Your Vehicle After a Crash