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• Don't just drive away from an accident, even a minor fender bender. Call the police and have a report made.

• Exchange information with the other driver. Get the names and telephone numbers of as many witnesses as you can.

• As soon as possible after the accident, report it to your insurance company, even if you don't plan to make a claim. If you believe the other driver was at fault, contact his or her insurance company also.

• If there's a dispute about who's at fault, file the claim with your own company. The two companies will duke it out later over the amount each will pay.

• If your vehicle is going to require some repair, ask for a rental car or reimbursement for a rental car. Insist upon a vehicle that is similar to your vehicle.

• Don't agree to release the body shop or the insurer of final responsibility until you're comfortable that the repairs are complete and the vehicle operates properly.

• If you agree to take your car to an insurer's preferred body shop, insist that the insurer provide a lifetime guarantee on the repairs.

• To ensure the collision work was done correctly, consider hiring an independent company to evaluate the repair.

• If your vehicle is totaled, don't accept your insurance company's first settlement offer. Check or look at a used-car price guide to see what your car was worth.

• If you have a 5-year lease or loan and owe more than the car is worth, ask for "substitution of vehicle," in which the loan or lease remains and the insurer finds you a similar vehicle as a replacement.

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Apps That Help Prevent Texting While Driving

Parents of teen drivers have yet more weapons in their arsenal when it comes to keeping their kids safe behind the wheel. I told you recently about a pay service called that disables texting while driving. But at $30, this app is more on the expensive end of the ...

The #1 safety feature in your car

The #1 safety feature in your car

With all the new safety features in cars, there's one that remains the make-or-break feature you need. Make sure you car has this to avoid serious crash injury...

10 Worst Cities For Traffic

Traffic is getting worse, but does your city rank in the Top 10? There are new stats from 24/7 Wall St./Inrix, the latter a leading-provider of traffic information, that lists the worst cities for traffic. The list is tallied based on morning and evening rush hour numbers: Here's a look ...

Keeping Teen Drivers Safe on the Road

I've long believed we need to do something in America to make teenage drivers stand out on the road. After all, auto accidents are the #1 cause of death for teens. The danger of death is greatly compounded when there's more than one passenger in a teen's car. The San ...

Traffic Tickets That Will Cost You The Most

Ever wonder exactly how much your auto insurance will go up after a speeding ticket? How about after 2 or 3 tickets? I have new numbers to share with you. Local governments have gone crazy with ticketing for everything because they're starved for revenue. You may recall that TomTom was ...

Best Auto Insurance Companies

Thinking about shopping your auto insurance? A new Consumer Reports tally reveals the best auto insurance companies. Car insurance ads on TV promise accident forgiveness, vanishing deductibles, and other selling points. But those features are just a side show to the main act, which is a company's reputation with satisfying ...

Buying Your Auto Insurance Through Walmart?!

The nation's largest retailer is making inroads into more financial territory with a new auto insurance shopping service. But will it save you money? A prejudiced system? Auto insurance premiums are now being set on a discriminatory basis. Both education level and job classification are key to what you pay ...

2 tips to protect your car and its contents

2 tips to protect your car and its contents

Car thieves have gone high tech with a mysterious handheld device that unlocks your car without smashing the window. Don't be their next victim.

Local government, red light camera installers in cahoots

  I am ultra-opposed to the red light cameras that are a presence in so many jurisdictions around the country. They're supposedly touted as a way to improve passenger safety and reduce the number of T -bone accidents. But I think red light cameras are not really there for safety, ...

Easy Way To Stay On Top Of Auto Recalls

If you're concerned with auto safety, the government now has a notification e-mail system that will alert you to recalls for your specific make, model, and year of car. There are recalls of cars all the time. Some serious, like braking and steering issues, or sudden acceleration; and others that ...

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