Is it a bad idea to send photos of car accidents to your insurance company?

Is it a bad idea to send photos of car accidents to insurance company? No, photos are important after a car accident. Taking pictures for insurance claims can provide details that may otherwise be missed. This can help you maximize your insurance payout after a car insurance photo inspection.

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Tonya Sisler has a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of South Carolina in Journalism and has worked for 15+ years in management. She has also completed a proofreading certification and is currently a professional writer.

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Written by Tonya Sisler
Insurance Writer Tonya Sisler

Brad Larson has been in the insurance industry for more than a dozen years. He started out as a claims adjuster for a national carrier. He has since switched to the agency side of the business. Brad is licensed in all P&C lines.

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Reviewed by Brad Larsen
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent Brad Larsen

UPDATED: Apr 15, 2022

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Things to Know

  • Taking pictures for insurance purposes can help maximize your insurance proceeds
  • Insurance claim photos should record injuries, the accident scene, the location and surrounding area, and any persons involved
  • A car insurance photo inspection can confirm all damages described in photos or find more

What should I do after a car accident? The car insurance company wants pictures of my car after an accident. Is it a bad idea to send photos of car accidents to your insurance company?

Taking pictures is generally a good idea. This provides evidence and documentation that can be used to help you. In addition, photo evidence can be helpful in all types of accidents, not just no-fault accidents.

In an at-fault accident, taking accident scene photos can strengthen the claim of the driver without fault. It can also lessen the penalties for the at-fault driver if the photos help prove certain findings.

Use the free tool above by entering your ZIP code to find car insurance rates for accidents in your area.

Is it ever a bad idea to send photos of car accidents to insurance companies?

No. Taking pictures for insurance claims allows car insurance companies to allocate the most appropriate insurance proceeds. Claim experts can find damage that may go unnoticed.

According to the Insurance Information Institute, an important step after an accident is accessing damage and injuries by taking pictures.

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Why are taking accident scene photos important?

As mentioned before, photos are important evidence. They provide details that may be easily missed. The photos can also speed up the claims process because investigators won’t have to piece together information from a variety of different sources.

Because pictures are so important, you should take as many as possible. Be sure to photograph the damages as close-up as possible. This helps to provide the best information. A wide shot or landscape mode is typically the most helpful for insurance claims.

If you’re in an accident, be sure to include pictures of:

  • Injuries
  • The accident scene
  • The location and surrounding area
  • Any persons involved (witnesses, responders, etc.)

You should never wait to take pictures. If you wait to take pictures, you risk losing evidence at the scene because conditions change over time.

For example, if you’re in an accident that results in a broken windshield, the shards of glass will most likely be removed from the road by the time you return because it’s a safety hazard for other drivers.

What is a car insurance photo inspection?

Car insurance companies, or third-party agency selected by them, will do the insurance photo inspection. The purpose of a photo inspection is to record the condition of a vehicle after an accident.

For example, how much should your claim be if your vehicle is totaled? What if the totaled car was a result of an at-fault accident on your part? How do car insurance companies calculate value in a total loss accident?

In addition to any photos taken at the accident scene, a photo inspection will provide evidence to support or deny the car insurance claim.

All damage will be documented in the photo inspection and matched to the description given in the insurance claim by an insurance adjuster. The adjuster will also review any pre-existing damage, the license plate, VIN, and odometer reading.

What’s best about taking pictures for insurance claims?

Taking accident scene photos should be a top priority after a car accident. The more pictures you have, the more information is available to help your car insurance claim.

Recording as many details as possible like the scene, injuries, damages, and witnesses can provide more details for the car insurance company and claims adjuster.

A car insurance photo inspection will be conducted by a claims adjuster and the information provided in the claim will be checked and verified so that you can receive the correct insurance payout.

It is never a bad idea to send photos of car accidents to your insurance company. Search for affordable car insurance rates for accidents in your area by typing your ZIP code in the free tool below.

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