Finance Blog

Stay financially savvy with the Equifax Advisor.

Sign up for our FREE Monthly Email Newsletter


Thank you for signing up for the FREE Equifax monthly newsletter

In addition to keeping in the financial know, you may be interested in checking your credit score and report.

Understand your credit. Help protect your identity.

Equifax Complete™ Premier Plan

  • Know What May Influence Your Credit Score and Be Alerted of Changes
    Credit score monitoring with custom alerts
    Important Disclosure: The Equifax credit score and 3-Bureau credit scores are based on an Equifax credit score model and are not the same scores used by 3rd parties to assess your creditworthiness.¹
  • Help Protect Your Identity
    Automatic fraud alerts encourages lenders to take extra steps to verify your identity²
  • Lock Your Credit
    The ability to lock and unlock your Equifax Credit Report³
Save 75% your first 30 days with the purchase of Equifax Complete™ Premier

$4.95 for the first 30 days, then $19.95 per month thereafter. You may cancel at any time; however, we do not provide partial month refunds.4

¹The credit scores provided under the offers described here use the Equifax Credit Score, which is a proprietary credit model developed by Equifax. The Equifax Credit Score and 3-Bureau scores are each based on the Equifax Credit Score model, but calculated using the information in your Equifax, Experian and TransUnion credit files. The Equifax Credit Score is intended for your own educational use. It is also commercially available to third parties along with numerous other credit scores and models in the marketplace. Please keep in mind third parties are likely to use a different score when evaluating your creditworthiness. Also, third parties will take into consideration items other than your credit score or information found in your credit file, such as your income.

²The Automatic Fraud Alert feature is made available to consumers by Equifax Information Services LLC and fulfilled on its behalf by Equifax Consumer Services LLC.

³Equifax Credit Report Control™ is only available while you have a current subscription to Equifax Complete Premier. Locking your credit file with Equifax Credit Report Control will prevent access to your Equifax credit file by certain third parties, such as credit grantors or other companies and agencies. Credit Report Control will not prevent access to your credit file at any other credit reporting agency, and will not prevent access to your Equifax credit file by companies like Equifax Personal Solutions which provide you with access to your credit report or credit score or monitor your credit file; Federal, state and local government agencies; companies reviewing your application for employment; companies that have a current account or relationship with you, and collection agencies acting on behalf of those whom you owe; for fraud detection and prevention purposes; and companies that wish to make pre-approved offers of credit or insurance to you. To opt out of such pre-approved offers, visit www.optoutprescreen.com/.

4We will require you to provide your payment information when you sign up and we will immediately charge your card $4.95. After that, we will charge the card $19.95 for each month you continue your subscription. You may cancel at any time; however, we do not provide partial month refunds.

Equifax® is a registered trademark and Equifax Complete™ Premier is a trademark of Equifax, Inc. © 2014, Equifax Inc., Atlanta, Georgia. All rights reserved.

How Do I File an Auto Insurance Claim?

Written by Heidi Petschauer on June 11, 2014 in Insurance  |   No comments

If you have ever been involved in an automobile accident, you probably remember how flustered you were after the initial impact. In the event of even a minor collision, it can be difficult to remember what your course of action should be. Calling the police…

filing an auto insurance claimIf you have ever been involved in an automobile accident, you probably remember how flustered you were after the initial impact. In the event of even a minor collision, it can be difficult to remember what your course of action should be.

Calling the police should be your first step. After that, here are a few things to remember that will help mitigate the stress of filing an insurance claim after an accident:

1. Exchange information. While you are waiting for the police to arrive, take photos and exchange information with the other driver involved. Use your smartphone to take pictures of the scene and of the other driver’s registration, license, and insurance card. Be sure to obtain the contact information of any and all people involved in the accident. Also determine whether there were any witnesses at the scene, and take down their contact information as well.

If the other driver of the other car is not cooperative, stay in your vehicle until the police arrive. Try to identify the year and make of the other car involved in the accident, as well as the plate number and issuing state. You can never assume that when the police arrive, they will give you all of the information you need to identify the others involved in the accident.

Depending on the state in which you live, you may want to go to the local precinct to pick up the police report or to obtain a case number for future reference. Typically, your insurance company will order this report as part of its investigative process, so even if all the police are offering is the case number, take it. There may be a fee to obtain a copy of the report and you could have to wait up to 10 days to receive it.

2. Call a towing company. If your vehicle is not drivable, call a towing company and ask that it take the car to a body shop. If you have roadside assistance coverage on your insurance policy, or if you have a membership with AAA, use that to help you through this process. Remember the name of the body shop to which your car is getting towed, as your insurance company will need this information to set up an inspection of your damaged vehicle.

3. Call your insurance company. File an auto insurance claim with your insurance representative as soon as possible. Having all the above information, along with your version of how the accident occurred, will help to speed up the processing of your claim and expedite vehicle repairs. Your insurance company will prepare an estimate of the damage done to your car in the accident.

If you have purchased rental car reimbursement coverage, your insurance agent will be able to answer any questions you have about that coverage. He or she may also be able to help you navigate the process of renting a car while yours is being repaired. If you don’t have collision coverage on your vehicle, you will need to report the accident to the other party’s insurance carrier. That company will assess the damage to your vehicle and determine the dollar amount it will offer you toward repairs.

4. Fill out the paperwork. After the accident, both your insurance company and the other party’s insurance company will send you some paperwork that asks for your version of what happened in the accident. In order to expedite the settlement of your claim, complete and return the paperwork quickly.

5. Wait for the claim to be settled. Depending on the severity and complexity of your claim and the reputations of the insurance companies with which you are dealing, the settlement process could take anywhere from five to 30 days. Typically, the insurance company will confirm your acceptance of the settlement offer in writing and then issue your payment.

(Click here to learn about the four factors that may help you get auto insurance discounts.)

Once your vehicle is repaired, you will need to have your body shop complete and sign a certificate of repair. If this form is not on file with your carrier and you are involved in another accident, your insurance company can withhold or deny any payment should the car be damaged in the same area.

Many insurance agents can provide you with a pamphlet that offers instructions on what to do in case of an accident. Request one from your agent and keep it in your glove compartment so that if you are ever in an accident, you’ll have it for reference.

Heidi Petschauer Fox graduated from St. John’s University in Queens, N.Y., in 1983 with a B.S. in management. She joined her late father’s firm, Petschauer Insurance, in 1982, became principal in 1995, and now shares ownership with her partner and cousin, Erwin Petschauer. She received her Certified Insurance Counselor (CIC) designation in 1997. She currently facilitates the professional and creative development of the entire Petschauer team and manages the personal lines and social media departments.

The information contained in this blog post is designed to generally educate and inform visitors to the Equifax Finance Blog. The blog posts do not give, and should not be assumed to provide, personalized tax, investment, real estate, legal, retirement, credit, personal financial, or other professional advice. Before making any financial decision, you should always consult with the appropriate professionals who can explain your options, rights, and legal responsibilities, and advise you on any tax, legal, credit, or business implications that may result from those decisions. The views and opinions expressed by the authors of blog posts are their own views and may not be the views or opinions of Equifax, Inc. and/or its affiliates.

No comments yet

Leave a Comment

Name :

Commenting guidelines

We welcome your interest and participation on this forum, but be aware that comments will be published at Equifax's sole discretion. Please don't use this blog to submit questions or concerns about your Equifax credit report or raise customer service issues. Instead, you should contact Equifax directly for all such matters and any attempts to do so in this forum will be promptly re-directed.

Some other factors to consider when commenting:
  1. Registration and privacy. While no registration is required to visit our forum, participants wishing to post a message must register by creating an account. All personal information provided by forum members incident to registration is governed by our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.
  2. All comments are anonymous. We'll delete your name, e-mail address, and any other identifying information, including details about your investments.
  3. We can't post or respond to every comment - As much as we'd like to, we can't post every comment, nor can we guarantee that we will respond to each individual message. All questions or comments about your Equifax credit report or similar customer service issues should be handled by contacting Equifax directly.
  4. Don't offer specific legal, tax or financial advice. All of the materials on this Site are for information, education, and noncommercial purposes only and this forum is not intended as a means of expressing views or ideas regarding any specific legal, tax, or investment advice. While offering general rules of thumb is both permitted and encouraged, recommending specific ideas or strategies regarding investments, taxes, and related matters is prohibited.
  5. Credit Repair. This blog is not intended as a venue for the discussion or exchange of ideas regarding credit repair or other strategies intended to assist visitors and community members improve or otherwise modify their credit histories, ratings or scores.
  6. Stay on topic. Your comment should be concise and pertain to the specific post in question.
  7. Be respectful of the community. The use of profanity, offensive language, spam, and personal attacks will not be tolerated and egregious or repeat offenders will be banned from future participation. We encourage disagreement and healthy debate, but please refrain from personal attacks on our WordPresss and contributors.
  8. Finally: Participation in this forum may be terminated by Equifax immediately and without notice for failure to comply with any guidelines or Terms of Use. As such, you should familiarize yourself with all pertinent requirements prior to submitting any response through the blog or otherwise. All opinions expressed in this forum are solely those of the individual submitting the comment, and don't necessarily represent the views of Equifax or its management.

Equifax maintains this interactive forum for education and information purposes in order to allow individuals to share their relevant knowledge and opinions with other members and visitors. We encourage you to participate in discussions about personal finance issues and other topics of interest to this community, but please read our commenting guidelines first. Equifax reserves the right to monitor postings to the forum and comments will be published at our discretion. Do you have questions or comments about your Equifax credit report or customer-service issues regarding an Equifax product? If so, please contact Equifax directly. All opinions and information expressed or shared in blog comments are solely those of the person submitting the comments, and don't necessarily represent the views of Equifax or its management.

Insurance Archive