There have been several incidents of cars catching fire while plying on the roads or even when parked by the roadside or in a parking space. Having the car insured through comprehensive car insurance plans comes handy in such an event. For claims arising out of car fire, one needs to have insured the car through a comprehensive policy and not just a third-party cover.
The first step should be to intimate the insurance company who will arrange for a surveyor to examine the extent of the loss, whether a partial loss or a total loss. Also, the examination will try to establish the cause of the fire. If the fire has caused negligence of the owner or due to tampering with electrical fittings, the claim may not be accepted by the insurer.
The amount of coverage depends on the Insured’s Declared Value (IDV) and is a fixed amount for each car. If the cost of repair of the car is less than 75 per cent of the IDV, it’s considered as Partial Loss, else it will be taken up as Total Loss. Being the insured, one has to provide the filled up claim form, RC copy, if available and the bank details to the insurer.
Typically, in a car fire, the papers kept inside the car gets damaged or completely burnt. But, one need not worry much as the claim process is independent of the physical papers in such events as the records are available with the insurer as well. However, one needs to file a police complaint to get duplicate registration papers.
At times, you may be running a financed car and still paying the car loan EMIs on it. In such a case, when the loan outstanding is still there and the car gets damaged in a fire, you need to intimate the financier and also the RTO.
The final claim amount will depend on the insured declared value (IDV) which in turn depends on the age of the car. There could be certain deductibles as well which brings down the claim amount further.
To ensure, that the claim amount is equal to the cost of a new car irrespective of the age of the car, there in optional add-on cover called ‘Return to Invoice’ that one may buy at the time of buying car insurance. After all, insurance is all about covering the risks from unseen events.