What to do if you were in an accident abroad?
Travelling to other countries most often leave the most pleasant impressions. But in any trip a person is not immune from the most pleasant accidents, such as an accident, injury, theft. What to do in such situations? Where should you first of all contact? And how to resolve difficulties as quickly as possible?
What to do in case of an accident abroad?
Statistically, one third of Russians have a valid passport. Some of them, while traveling, became a party to a variety of accidents.
One of the most common unpleasant experiences while traveling in other countries is a traffic accident. Ignorance of the roads and traffic rules of the new country, a relaxed state on vacation and other factors play a significant role here. If it happened, you need to act as follows:
- Stop and do not move the car from the immediate scene of the accident. Such an error can lead to large fines and subsequent problems. Next, you need to turn on the alarm and install a warning sign on the road.
- If there are victims, call for medical assistance.
- Look for the presence of witnesses. If they are present – try to get their phone numbers or other contact information in case their testimony is needed later.
- Make video and photo recordings of the scene. All of this material may be useful in case of disputes about guilt. Take pictures, preferably with the surrounding area.
- Take an accident notice form from the other participant in the accident and fill it in. In the EU countries, there is a unified form for this form, called Accident Statement. If there is no notice, you need to record the license plate numbers and makes of all the cars involved in the accident. When filling out the notice, special attention should be paid to marking the location of the initial and subsequent impacts.
- Report the accident to the foreign bureau and your insurance company. If the car is a rental, insurance is also mandatory.
There are three more important things to keep in mind:
- Do not sign any documents if you are not sure of their content due to the foreign language or other reasons;
- Try to keep all proofs of the financial costs incurred in connection with the accident. These may be helpful in obtaining subsequent compensation for damages if you are found to be the injured party;
- In some countries, the period of submission of an application for compensation to the insurance company is only a few days, so do not hesitate to do it. For example, in Belarus, this period is 5 days.
What should I do if I get injured abroad?
In case you get hurt or fall ill while you are abroad, if you have insurance, you should call the insurance company. The telephone number is always listed on the policy. The operator should be given your name, current location, policy number, and a brief description of the situation.
Difficulties may arise in situations where treatment is urgently needed. There is a high probability that in this case, you will first have to pay for medical services yourself and then claim compensation from the insurance company.
Then the main criterion is to keep all the supporting documents – checks, receipts, prescriptions and other papers. Of course, the insurance company can refuse payment because, for example, the tourist turned to the wrong medical facility, incorrect paperwork and other reasons. Therefore, it is still best to agree to pay for treatment independently only in urgent situations.
Payment will also depend on such criterion as a list of insured events. It is always fixed in the agreement concluded with the client, so it is better to familiarize yourself with its content in advance.
For example, if dental services are concerned, insurance will most often cover only emergency procedures: removal of acute pain, treatment of infection and similar issues. If a tourist decides, for example, to whiten his teeth, it is best not to count on coverage from the insurance company.
It is an interesting fact that most insurance companies do not pay for sun-related injuries, such as burns and heat strokes. This is understandable, because overheating is often the number 1 injury on vacation at the sea. All cases of unpaid injuries will also be covered by your insurance contract.
What to do if you have been burgled on holiday?
To lose property or money on vacation is not a pleasant situation. You should proceed as follows:
- If, for example, a purse with a card or just a bank card was stolen, you should call the bank where it was issued and ask to block it.
- Contact the police with the appropriate statement. They will issue a certificate confirming the fact of treatment.
- Visit an embassy. They will help to contact relatives, and sometimes even buy a return ticket, if the tourist proves that he really was in a desperate situation.
Apply to the embassy and need to in case of loss of your passport. They may issue a temporary permit to return to Russia.
What to do if you are involved in a traffic accident abroad
If you are going to go abroad in your car, you need to take out insurance. The most popular international option is the Green Card. You can get a policy from Russian insurers, and the payments will be according to the rules of the country where the accident happened, so it is better to study them in advance. “The Green Card policy works just like the MTPL insurance, so only the accident victim will receive money, and the person at fault will be responsible for repairing his car.
How to insure a car if you go abroad
“The Green Card is an analogue of MTPL insurance, which is valid abroad. The Green Card system includes 48 countries, including Great Britain, Germany, Italy, Turkey, Azerbaijan and others. There is an official map on which you can see which countries the insurance works in and see the addresses of insurance offices. If a country participates in the international insurance system, you cannot enter it without a Green Card.
Each of the countries participating in the Green Card system has its own peculiarities of insurance legislation. Therefore, before you travel to another country, you should find out the exact amount of insurance coverage. For example, in Austria the minimum amount of insurance coverage for material damage is €1.4 million, and for health damage – €6.3 million. As explained by lawyer Yalilov & Partners Regional Rating. Criminal law group Arbitration group (major disputes – high market) group Resolution of disputes in courts of general jurisdiction × German Kazanov, insurance compensation will be paid according to the rules of the country where the accident occurred. You can see the specifics of the legislation in the countries of the Green Card system on the website of the Russian Union of Motor Insurers (RAMI). For example, in the UK, the police only go to the scene of the accident if there has been bodily injury or a serious incident. Law enforcement officers establish the fact that a criminal offense has been committed. They do not collect information that will help the victim file a civil claim. This should be handled by the accident participants themselves.
In Russia it is possible to obtain international MTPL insurance from nine insurers:
- JSC AlfaStrakhovanie;
- JSC IC “Twenty First Century”;
- PJSC IC “RESO-Guarantee”;
- PJSC IC Rosgosstrakh;
- LLC IC Soglasiye;
- JSIC VSK;
- JSC SG Spasskiye Vorota;
- LLC Zetta Insurance
- JSC Ugoria State Insurance Company.
You will need a passport or registration certificate of the legal entity and a car registration document (passport, registration certificate, technical passport) to conclude a contract. But the Green Card is not a personal insurance policy. The document includes only information about the insured person, and any person may drive the car. The minimum term of Green Card validity is 15 days, and the maximum is a year.
If you are going to a country where the Green Card is not valid, you must contact the Russian Consulate. They will tell you about the insurance legislation and explain how you can get insurance.
Orest Matsala, Lead Lawyer European Legal Service Federal Rating. ×
Auto Lawyer National Legal Service AMULEX National Legal Service AMULEX Federal Rating. × Lubov Shebanova specifies that insurance products of other countries, which do not participate in the international insurance system, are very similar to the Green Card.
What to do in case of an accident in another country
If you are involved in an accident abroad, you need to act according to the instructions.
The European form of notification of an accident is a statement of the accident with a description of all the circumstances. All persons involved in an accident must fill in the document in their native language. It is necessary to specify your personal data, answer the questions and draw a scheme of the accident. When all the participants do this, the form should be reread and signed. Within 15 days of the accident, the document should be sent to your insurer.
This is what the European form of notification of a road traffic accident looks like. Source: RAMI.
Insurance compensation abroad
If you became the cause of the accident abroad, the victim will send a claim to the local “Green Card” bureau. The document will be handed over to a representative of the Russian insurer from whom you issued the policy. He will look into the circumstances and will issue an insurance indemnity.
If there is no representative of the Russian insurer abroad (and not every country or company has one), the local Green Card Bureau will handle the claim independently. The bureau will bill the Russian company you are insured with.
“The Green Card works like an MTPL insurance, which means that only the person who was injured in the accident will receive the insurance compensation. To get money for the repair of your car as well, you need a comprehensive insurance policy with an extension to the country where you are going to go.
The person responsible for the accident has MTPL of the country where the accident happened. This is the easiest case. You need to contact the insurance company of the person who caused the accident.
The person who caused the accident does not have insurance or is not identified. You have to go to the local Green Card Bureau and clarify the possibility of receiving payments from a special guarantee fund. This fund is an analogue of the Russian Compensation Fund. The telephone numbers of Green Card bureaus are on the back of the insurance policy.