It’s estimated that over 700,000 cars are stolen in the US every year. So, if you’ve walked outside your home or into the parking lot and can’t find your car, that’s probably what your mind is thinking.
Once you’ve double-checked and you’re sure your car has been stolen, your immediate reaction is to panic or get angry. Regardless you’ve got a lot on your mind, and it’s not easy to think about the next steps.
So, take a deep breath and don’t panic because here’s what to do if your car gets stolen.
Call the Police
Once you are certain your car is stolen, call the police and report the grand theft auto.
Be prepared to give them as much information about the theft as possible. Police will ask you about your car’s make, model, license plate number, and VIN to help them identify and find it.
The police will also ask if your car has a GPS tracker in it. Having a tracker in your vehicle makes finding and recovering it much more manageable. Here are some of the best tracking devices you can put in your car to help you find it if it gets stolen.
Contact Your Insurance Company
After calling the police, your next call should be to your insurance company. Your insurance company will also ask you the details of your car and about what other personal belongings you had in your vehicle.
You will need a police report to file a claim with your car insurance company. Filing a claim right away makes the claims process smoother and instills confidence that there is no fraud going on with the claim.
Reach Out to Your Lender
If you are financing or leasing your vehicle, it is good to also get in touch with the company that manages your car payments. Any claims from your insurance company will be paid to them to cover the costs of your stolen vehicle. Notifying them helps you not be liable for payments and allows the claims process to move faster.
Plan Your Transportation
You are probably stressing about how you will get around without your car. Instead of panicking, contact friends and family to see if you can borrow a car or inquire with rental car companies. If you have rental reimbursement insurance through your insurance company they can cover the cost of a rental car.
What to Do With a Recovered Car
First, have your car looked at by a claims adjustor. They will assess any damage to your car and determine the costs to repair or replace it. Their report will help aid you in getting the most from your insurance claim.
Stolen cars often have missing parts, so taking your car to an auto repair shop will ensure it is in one piece and is in good working order.
Finally, check to see if your personal belongings were stolen. Most car insurance doesn’t cover items that aren’t part of the vehicle, but these are sometimes covered by your home or renter’s insurance.
Be Prepared for What to Do If Your Car Gets Stolen
Now you know what to do if your car gets stolen so you can breathe easier if it happens to you. Following these steps will make this unfortunate situation less stressful and panic-inducing. But remember, the best way to avoid car theft is to take steps to prevent it in the first place.
Browse our website for more car tips and auto repair help.