Insurance Tips: Filing winter-related claims

Insurance Tips: Filing winter-related claims

(WOIO) - Now that the sun is shining, it's time to deal with the aftermath and problems that come with the freeze and thaw cycle. We have an insurance agent with tips on dealing with the damage to your car and home.

Day after day, it seems like this snow is never going to end. A much as we hate it, though, it's keeping the

working around the clock, responding to all the stalled cars and crashes. In fact, since Jan. 1, they've responded to at least 1,400 calls in northeast Ohio alone. That doesn't include all the townships, which handle their own investigations.

"Some of the biggest problems we've had are car accidents," says insurance agent Ron Hettler.

That means Hettler is staying busy.

"Yea, we have been crazy. It has been good business," he says.

Hettler's company covers almost every kind of insurance, including auto, home and medical. But he says lately, car accidents have been the biggest problem.

Drivers are required by law to have some kind of insurance coverage. But Hettler says just because you have it, doesn't mean you have to use it.

"The body shop is only going to spend $200 or $300 to repair it. Well, you are going to waste your time, the company's time and everybody's time turning that in, because there is no way it is going to cost more than the deductible," he explains.

If you do file with insurance, Hettler says to make sure and give them as much information as you can, including police reports, pictures and witness statements.

Hettler's biggest tip: No matter what kind of accident you've had, call your insurance company as soon as you can. He says the longer you wait to file a claim, the more trouble you are going to have getting it paid. 

"I would call right away. There are probably some reasons not to call, but there aren't many," says Hettler.

He says the same rules apply to your home and medical insurance, if the winter weather has caused other kinds of accidents.

As expensive as it is, you gotta have that insurance. But one way to make it a little more affordable is by raising your deductible as high as you can, and by bundling home, car, life and whatever other insurance you may need. Because you'll get discounts that way.

Click here for more information on how to file insurance claims.
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