What to Do After a Car Accident
Accident Checklist & FAQs
The Accident Checklist
Please follow these 7 steps in case of an accident or if you require after hours emergency towing.
Once you are safely pulled over call the police immediately and insist on a police report even if no one is injured. A police report helps insurance determine who is at fault.
If the police do not come, safely secure photos of the IDs and information of all motorist’s involved including insurance ID cards, drivers’ licenses, registrations, and license plates. The other motorist’s insurance ID cards are the most important item.
Take as many photos of the surroundings and cars involved as possible.
If after-hours emergency towing is required call APOW Towing at 914-423-5715 and ask for your vehicle to be transported to or kept for Merit Auto Body. If they are not able to assist you, please ask your local police to recommend an authorized tow for that area or roadway.
If your vehicle is towed to any other facility, Merit Auto Body can retrieve it for you the next business day. Please make sure you note exactly where your vehicle is being taken.
Notify Merit Auto Body about what happened to your vehicle and our staff will handle all logistics for the retrieval of your vehicle and the entire insurance claim process for you.
Do not let your insurance company tell you where to repair your car. NY State Insurance law states that you have the right to repair your vehicle at any repair shop of your choosing. Contact Merit first and we will coordinate with any insurance company to ensure the timely and proper repair of your vehicle.
Answers to Frequently Asked Questions
Yes. The police must always be notified after an accident, even if the damage seems minor and everyone is OK. The Police Report helps insurance companies determine who is at fault. Also it is safer for a police officer to obtain other motorist information.
Safely and without confrontation attempt to secure pictures of the other motorist’s insurance ID cards, drivers licenses, registrations, license plates, as well as of all the vehicles involved. The other motorist’s insurance ID cards are the most important information to obtain. Without their insurance ID card it may be difficult to file against them.
This will not be a problem. It is common for the police to other tow companies to bring vehicles back to their facility only after an accident. Please make sure you know exactly where your vehicle is being taken. Instruct any representative with whom you speak that you are not authorizing anything to be done to your vehicle by them. Provide us with their information, and we can have the vehicle picked up for you and transferred to our facility.
As per New York state law, you have the right to have your vehicle repaired at the shop of your choice. According to Section 2610 of state insurance law, your insurer cannot mandate that your vehicle repairs be made by a certain company or repair shop – the choice to use us is entirely yours. Please allow Merit Auto Body to help fight for you against insurance companies demanding where you take your car so they can save money. Please remember that the lowest estimate is not always the safest estimate or the way your vehicles manufacturer wants the car repaired!