If you have been involved in a car accident in Quebec, you are probably aware that you can obtain justice from the Société de l’assurance automobile du Québec. But the claims process is complex and the slightest mistake on your part can be detrimental to you.
Here is all the information you need to take into account to file a claim with the SAAQ as thoroughly as possible.
What is the procedure to follow after a car accident?
To file a claim with the SAAQ, you may choose to contact an SAAQ lawyer for road accidents. This is the best way to put all the odds on your side, especially since this decision can have an important impact on your life.
You can also file a claim unaccompanied. Here is what you need to know before you start the process:
Documents to provide to the SAAQ after a car accident
To open a file following a car accident and obtain a satisfactory court decision, you must send several documents to the SAAQ:
The medical report showing your injuries
After an accident, a meeting with a doctor allows you to obtain an initial medical report. This report lists the various injuries you have suffered.
Since the doctor’s report is an essential document for the SAAQ, do not hesitate to mention the slightest pain or discomfort, even if it seems insignificant.
Proof of the accident
After a car accident, the police officer in charge of the accident sends various information to the SAAQ (identity of the accident victim, license plate number, driver’s license number, etc.).
You can get this document from the SAAQ about 15 days after the accident and include it in your claim. This document is proof that the accident took place.
The copy of the accident report can also serve as proof of the accident.
Some accident-related expenses
Upon presentation of the receipt, the SAAQ will reimburse $30 for the consultation with a physician to obtain the medical report.
You may also be compensated if clothing or accessories were damaged in the accident:
- Up to $400 for clothing deemed essential
- Up to $1000 if you were driving a motorcycle – this also includes protective gear such as a helmet
On the other hand, the SAAQ does not reimburse you for material damage to your vehicle. You can contact your private insurance company if you wish to obtain this type of compensation.
Where to open a file with the SAAQ
- Online, directly on the SAAQ website
- By mail after filling out the paper form – you will have to call the SAAQ to open a file and obtain a claim number
- By visiting an SAAQ office and filling out the form in person.
What to do after submitting the claim
After sending your claim to the SAAQ, you will receive an acknowledgement of receipt and a claims agent will be assigned to open your file. This agent will keep you informed of the processing of your file. Above all, the agent will inform you of the decision made by the SAAQ:
- If the decision is in your favor, the agent will inform you of the applicable benefits based on your situation and the amounts that will be paid to you
- If your claim is denied, you will have 60 days to contest the decision
Me Bégin can help you contest the SAAQ’s decision. Contact our firm for more information.
Exceptions regarding the SAAQ
You are a victim of a hit and run
In the event of a hit-and-run, the SAAQ may compensate you if the following conditions are met:
- The accident took place in Quebec, you are the owner of the vehicle, your driver’s license is valid and you are not entirely at fault for the accident
- Your insurance policy does not cover hit-and-run accidents and includes a minimum liability clause of $50,000
- You reported the accident to the police less than 48 hours after the accident, made a claim to the SAAQ no later than 60 days after the accident, and did not make any repairs to your car until the SAAQ had assessed the damage
- The damage to the vehicle or other property is valued at more than $500
You were involved in an accident outside Quebec
If you live in Quebec but were in a car accident outside the province, the SAAQ may cover your injuries in some cases. Try to gather as many documents as possible at the time of the accident, such as a copy of the police report, testimonials or photos. You will also need to submit a doctor’s medical certificate to the SAAQ.
However, the SAAQ does not cover property damage caused by the accident, nor bodily injury to other people.
Looking for a lawyer to file a claim after a car accident?
As you can see, the claims process is complex because various scenarios are possible. You can contact Bégin Avocat to discuss your situation.
Me Bégin can help you better understand what to expect from the SAAQ depending on the nature of the accident. Me Bégin can also guide you through the entire claims process, from the opening of the file to the contestation of the decision, if you want to maximize your chances of receiving a favorable verdict from the SAAQ.
Call our office at (514) 509-7852 or contact us by filling out our contact form below