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How to act in the case of damages?

Contacts
IF YOU WERE IN A TRAFFIC ACCIDENT

Notify the Emergency Response Centre by calling 112 if:

  • Somebody has been injured in an accident.
  • You do not know who is the owner of the property that was damaged. For example, you damaged another vehicle in a car park or a traffic sign. A traffic accident happened when you hit or tried to avoid hitting an animal.
  • The parties to a traffic accident do not come to an agreement as to the guilty party.

Recording the circumstances of a traffic accident

  • Before leaving the scene of the accident, the person who was responsible for the accident as well as the person who suffered as a result should be agreed. An easy way to do this is to fill in the “Traffic Accident Notice” form.
  • If you do not have the form at hand, draw up a free-format written document describing the accident. Write down the following:
    • Details of the persons involved in the accident (name, personal identification code, phone number, e-mail address)
    • Vehicle details (vehicle registration number, traffic insurance information)
    • Description of the event along with a sketch
    • Signed agreement: who is the injured party and who caused the damage
  • If possible, take some photographs at the scene (showing the damage to the vehicle(s), positioning and location) and get the contact information of any witnesses. In no case may the vehicles be removed from the scene of the event before the accident has been recorded.

Inform the insurer

  • First, do everything you can to avoid any further damage. Make sure that your vehicle that was in an accident is safe to drive. If you need towing services and you have comprehensive insurance, request the Roadside Assistance Contact information is available here.
  • If you are the injured party to a traffic accident: contact the guilty party’s insurer at the first opportunity. You will be referred to a car repair cooperation partner. You can also contact your own insurer if:
  • All the circumstances of the traffic accident are clear (who is the injured party and who is the culprit)
  • No-one was injured in the accident
  • The estimated amount of damage is under €10,000.
  • The vehicles involved in the accident are registered in Estonia.
  • The accident happened in Estonia
  • You make contact within 30 days
  • If you are the party who caused the accident: promptly contact the insurer who provided you the traffic insurance coverage. If necessary, also contact your comprehensive insurance provider.
  • To reportdamage under comprehensive insurance choose a car repair shop suitable for your car. The damage will be reported on your behalf. If the vehicle has a factory warranty coverage, contact the relevant dealer.
IF YOU WERE IN A TRAFFIC ACCIDENT ABROAD

In case of a traffic accident abroad the same rules must be followed as in Estonia.

Here are some aspects you should be aware of:

  • The “Traffic Accident Notice“ form is similar to that used in the European Union and in the international Green Card countries as the same principles apply.
  • If you do not have the form at hand, draw up a free-format written document describing the accident. Be sure to sign an agreement as to who is the injured party and who caused the damage.
  • The more details you give about the accident the swifter the loss adjustment will be.
  • Be sure to keep a copy of the form.

Inform the insurer

  • First, do everything you can to avoid any further damage. Make sure that your vehicle that was in an accident is safe to drive. If you need towing services and you have comprehensive insurance, request the Roadside Assistance Contact information is available here.
  • If you are the injured party to a traffic accident: contact the guilty party’s insurer at the first opportunity to get further instructions. The insurance indemnity is paid by the guilty party’s insurer or its representative in Estonia.
  • If you are the party who caused the accident: promptly contact the insurer who provided you the traffic insurance coverage. If necessary, also contact your comprehensive insurance provider.
  • To report damage undercomprehensive insurance abroad contact your insurer who will give you further instructions for loss adjustment.

If you were in a traffic accident in Russia

Here are some aspects you should be aware of:

  • To leave Russia in a vehicle that has been in a traffic accident you must have a police certificate confirming the traffic accident.
  • The sums insured are significantly smaller in Russia compared to Estonia. For example, 560,000 roubles per injured party for personal injury and 400,000 roubles per injured party for damage to property.
  • Any damage exceeding the sum insured must be covered by the person who caused the damage.
  • Damage to vehicle will only be compensated on the basis of an assessment of a Russian expert. Being awarded an indemnity requires the assessment of the vehicle’s restoration value minus the vehicle amortisation.
  • If damage is caused by a vehicle not covered by an insurance contract, the damage will be compensated by the Russian Green Card Bureau (Russian Association of Motor Insurers, Рoссийский Сoюз Автoстраховщиков).
  • If the vehicle which caused the damage cannot be identified, no damage will be compensated.
  • The injured party cannot apply for an indemnity in Estonia for a traffic accident that happened in Russia.
IF YOU WERE IN A TRAFFIC ACCIDENT IN A CAR PARK

In case of a traffic accident in a car park the same rules must be followed as in case of a traffic accident elsewhere.

Here are some aspects you should be aware of:

  • If you are the injured party to a traffic accident: contact the guilty party’s insurer at the first opportunity. You will be referred to a car repair cooperation partner. You can also contact your own insurer if:

    • All the circumstances of the traffic accident are clear (who is the injured party and who is the culprit)
    • No-one was injured in the accident
    • The estimated amount of damage is under €10,000.
    • The vehicles involved in the accident are registered in Estonia.
    • The accident happened in Estonia
    • You make contact within 30 days

  • If you are the party who caused the accident: promptly contact the insurer who provided you the traffic insurance coverage. If necessary, also contact your comprehensive insurance provider.
  • To report damage undercomprehensive insurance choose a car repair shop suitable for your car. The damage will be reported on your behalf. If the vehicle has a factory warranty coverage, contact the relevant dealer.
  • If you are the injured party to a traffic accident: contact the guilty party’s insurer at the first opportunity. You will be referred to a car repair cooperation partner.
  • If you are the injured party to a traffic accident but the culprit is no longer at the scene of the accident, then:

    • If you have the information of the guilty party, contact their or your own insurer.
    • If the guilty party is unknown, comprehensive insurance helps.
    • If the guilty party is unknown and you do not have comprehensive insurance, try to identify the guilty party through eyewitnesses or security cameras. If you do not succeed, you must cover the repair expenses yourself.
IF A TRAFFIC ACCIDENT WAS CAUSED BY A VEHICLE INSURED IN A FOREIGN COUNTRY

If a vehicle insured by a foreign insurer is involved in a traffic accident in Estonia, the loss adjustment and compensating the injured party for damage will be handled by the insurer’s representative in Estonia (correspondent). A list and contact details of correspondents are available here.

If the foreign insurer has no correspondent, contact the Estonian Motor Insurance Bureau.

IF YOU HAVE DAMAGED YOUR VEHICLE BY DRIVING THROUGH A POTHOLE

Damage caused to a vehicle as a result of a pothole will be compensated under comprehensive insurance. You will have to cover the deductible which you can claim from the possessor of the road.

It is extremely important to promptly record the damage and the scene of the event.

If you have not concluded a comprehensive insurance contract, you can claim compensation for the entire damage from the owner of the road. Details on how to submit a claim to the owner of the road are available here.

IF YOUR VEHICLE REQUIRES FREE OF CHARGE ROADSIDE ASSISTANCE SERVICE

The free of charge Roadside Assistance service is a 24/7 service with no charge for unexpected and unforeseen situations when for some reason you cannot continue your journey with your vehicle. The Roadside Assistance service is only available if you have comprehensive insurance and it applies to passenger cars, vans and motorcycles. Contact information for the Roadside Assistance service is available here.

The Roadside Assistance service helps you:

  • Change a punctured tyre;
  • Start the car when the battery has died;
  • Pull your car out of snow or sand or when you have driven off the road;
  • Tow your car to a repair shop.
IF A WINDOW OF YOUR VEHICLE HAS BEEN DAMAGED

If your vehicle has a comprehensive insurance coverage, window repair is usually free of charge. Contact your insurer’s business partner in window repair at the first opportunity to agree upon a suitable time for the repair or exchange of the window. A list of window repair partners is available here.

You do not need to notify your insurer to fill in the damage report form; you can do that at the business partner’s.

As a rule, no deductible is applied to compensation for window damage.

IF YOU HIT AN ANIMAL

Here are some aspects you should be aware of:

  • First, do everything you can to avoid any further damage. Be sure to ensure the safety of yourself and the passengers.
  • Report an injured or killed animal by calling the Emergency Response Centre at 112 or the Environmental Inspectorate at 1313.
  • If possible, take some photographs at the scene of the event to prove that you hit a wild animal or livestock.
  • After you have recorded the circumstances of the event you may leave the scene with your car if you are certain that it is safe to do so.
  • Notify your insurer at the first opportunity to get further instructions for loss adjustment.
  • If you have comprehensive insurance, any damage caused by hitting a wild animal is usually compensated without applying deductibles.
IF YOUR VEHICLE IS STOLEN OR VANDALISED
  • Immediately call the police at 112.
  • Fill in and submit an electronic report of an offence.
  • If you have comprehensive insurance, also notify the relevant insurer who will provide further instructions for loss adjustment. As a rule, you should reckon with 10–15% of deductible of the amount of damage.
Contacts
IF YOU FALL ILL WHILE TRAVELLING
  • For medical assistance you can go to a state or a private clinic. Larger hotels usually have a physician on site. If possible, you should prefer state health care institutions. The most important thing is for you to get help.
  • Act according to doctor’s orders. Retain all documents given to you (treatment invoices, receipts for medicinal products, transport invoices and other documents certifying expenses). Ask a physician in the foreign country to issue a medical certificate concerning the diagnosis and treatment. If possible, pay for your medical treatment expenses yourself.
  • If you cannot pay the medical treatment expenses, please contact your insurer’s business partner who will arrange for the issue of a letter of guarantee and pay for your medical treatment expenses on your behalf. The contact information of insurers’ medical assistance partners is available here and also on the travel insurance policy.
  • Notify your insurer at the first opportunity and file a damage report along with all the documents.
IF YOU MUST CANCEL YOUR TRIP
  • If you are unable to go on your trip, notify the parties involved (tour operator, airline, accommodation facility) at the first opportunity for making changes in the itinerary and cancelling bookings.
  • Notify your insurer at the first opportunity and file a damage report along with all the documents. An insured event must be proved; for example, if you fall ill you must provide a certificate from your family physician. You must also submit a certificate if another event takes place (for example, accident at home or in traffic). 
IF YOUR FLIGHT TO YOUR DESTINATION IS DELAYED
  • Consult with travel specialists to find a substitute flight.
  • Be sure to ask from the air carrier a statement of the reasons for the delay.
  • If possible, take a photograph of the airport information board announcing the delay.
  • Retain all documents and invoices of additional expenses (accommodation, food and beverages, new tickets and so on).
  • Notify your insurer at the first opportunity and file a damage report along with all the documents.
IF YOUR BAGGAGE IS LATE TO YOUR DESTINATION
  • Ask from the air carrier a statement of the delay and receipt of your baggage.
  • If your baggage is more than 4 hours late, you have the right to buy all necessary essentials in the amount agreed upon in the insurance contract.
  • Retain all documents and invoices of expenses incurred.
  • Notify your insurer at the first opportunity and file a damage report along with all the documents.
IF YOUR BAGGAGE IS DAMAGED
  • Ask from the air carrier a statement confirming damage to your baggage.
  • If possible, take photographs of the damaged baggage.
  • Notify your insurer at the first opportunity and file a damage report along with all the documents.
IF YOUR BAGGAGE IS LOST
  • Ask from the air carrier a statement confirming the loss of your baggage.
  • Make a list of all the items in the baggage and note their value.
  • Retain all documents and invoices of expenses incurred.
  • Notify your insurer at the first opportunity and file a damage report along with all the documents.
IF YOU LOSE YOUR DOCUMENTS WHILE TRAVELLING
  • As soon as possible report the theft or loss of your document to the police and ask them for a certificate. For advice call the Ministry of Foreign Affairs 24/7 helpline at +372 5301 9999.
  • Be sure to ask whether you will be allowed to return to your home country on the basis of the certificate issued by the police or a copy of the document.
  • If the relevant country has an Estonian Embassy and/or Estonian honorary consul, apply for a free Emergency Travel Document for returning to Estonia. If your document is lost or stolen in a country where there is no Estonian Embassy and/or honorary consul, you can contact the foreign mission of any Member State of the European Union. In that case you will be issued with a European Emergency Travel Document. This document is intended for returning home, not continuing your travel.
  • Find out whether leaving the country requires a departure permit or departure visa.
  • Make sure you have plenty of time to fill in the documents and be patient. Retain all expense documents and other documents proving the event. On site expenses must be covered by you. Baggage insurance compensates for expenses according to the agreed terms and conditions.
  • Notify your insurer at the first opportunity and file a damage report along with all the documents.
USEFUL REFERENCES AND INFORMATION
Contacts
IF THERE IS A FIRE
  • First, do everything you can to ensure safety. Evacuate and provide first aid to possible victims.
  • Call the Emergency Response Centre at 112 if you cannot contain the fire on your own. Act according to the instructions given.
  • Keep the scene untouched so that it would be possible to identify the cause of the fire.
  • If your home insurance contract also includes our Home Assistance service, request it immediately. The Home Assistance service offers you round-the-clock help in solving unexpected urgent situations. The cause of the damage will be eliminated and, if necessary, repair and cleaning work will be arranged and help will be provided for filling in the damage report. Request the Home Assistance service by calling this number.
IF THERE IS A WATER EMERGENCY
  • First, do everything you can to ensure safety. If possible, turn off the water supply to avoid any further damage.
  • If there is a possibility that the water damage may spread to your neighbours, alert them immediately.
  • Take photographs to collect evidence of the damage.
  • Start drying.
  • Notify your insurer at the first opportunity and file a damage report along with all the documents.
  • If your home insurance contract also includes our Home Assistance service, request it immediately. The Home Assistance service will help you with the drying and, if necessary, a plumber will be called and you will be assisted in filling in the damage report. Request the Home Assistance service by calling this number.
IF A STORM CAUSES DAMAGE
  • First, do everything you can to ensure safety and avoid any further damage. For example, cover any openings caused by the storm by using a tarpaulin or plastic film.
  • If your home insurance contract also includes our Home Assistance service, request it immediately. The Home Assistance service will help cover any openings caused by the storm and your home will be guarded until the openings have been closed. Assistance in filling in the damage report will also be provided. Request the Home Assistance service by calling this number.
IF THERE IS A THEFT OR AN ACT OF VANDALISM
  • Immediately call the police at 112.
  • Fill in and submit an electronic report of an offence.
  • Notify your insurer at the first opportunity to get further instructions for loss adjustment.
  • If your home insurance contract also includes our Home Assistance service, request it immediately. The Home Assistance service will arrange guarding of your home until it has been securely sealed. You will get help in covering the doors and windows if smashed and a new lock will be installed. Assistance in filling in the damage report will also be provided. Request the Home Assistance service by calling this number.
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