Nowadays auto traveling is gaining more and more popularity. Driving from Russia to Georgia in the absence of direct flights is an economy and fun way for family travel, especially in winter – when the whole family can be comfortably loaded into the car, as well as ski and snowboard equipment. Auto tourism is convenient, but requires a driver to pay attention and be careful while driving on unfamiliar roads. To make trip comfortable and safe there are some essential rules for the driver to follow — check technical condition of a car before the journey, drive carefully and be attentive on unfamiliar roads. Overconfidence on the road can play a bad joke on you and does dramatically increases the risk of an accident, in which you can be either a victim or a culprit. Let’s figure out what to do if something went wrong and you are trapped in a situation…
First of all, in any case wait until police arrives. Patrol arrives quite quickly here. Don’t try to cut a deal with other accident participants, not to mention policemen. In first case there is a risk of an unfair approach, in the second — your creativity may turn into criminal charges. Police will evaluate the situation, draw up an accident scheme, record witness testimony, and draw up an accident report. This procedure is not very different from such procedures in other countries. Keep in mind that policemen are obliged to record your conversations, and everything you say will be on tape, even if not included in the protocol, and can be used against you. All communication with the police is conducted in Georgian, although many police officers speak English and Russian. The police report will always be drawn up only in Georgian. If you think that you do not know this language well enough, tell the patrol about it – you will be provided with an interpreter. Moreover, the translator can be any disinterested person who speaks and writes in your language and Georgian — even a passerby from the street. Whether a lawyer needs to be involved at this stage depends on the nature of the accident. If the situation is controversial, or even if you simply have subjective doubts, call lawyers.
If an accident was your fault, you will need to compensate the injured party. If you are a lucky owner of a car with foreign license plates, your liability must be insured.
The amount that may be covered by insurance is limited to:
- For harm caused to the health, legal capacity or life of each victim – 30 000 lari / approximately 10 000 US dollars (the total limit of insurance compensation for each insured event is 300 000 lari / approximately 100 000 US dollars).
- For material damage caused to the property of one victim – 25 000 lari (total limit for each insured event – 50 000 lari).
If a damage amount exceeds the abovementioned limits, you will have to pay the difference from your own pocket.
If the accident was the fault of the other party, then the obligation to indemnify you lies with the causer. Georgia does NOT have a requirement for compulsory liability insurance. So you will be compensated for the damage either by the insurance company of the inflictor of harm, if the car is insured, or by the inflictor of harm himself. We hope that you get lucky, and the person will be adequate and open for dialogue and negotiation, otherwise you will have to go to court.
Remember the following:
- Amount of damage, caused to the vehicle, and the amount needed to restore the car is determined by the prices in Georgia. Be prepared that the amount for the restoration of the car indicated in the examination will not be enough in your country. Nobody will compensate you the difference. Arguments that such a car and restoration works are more expensive in other countries will not be taken into account.
- Besides compensation for a car restoration, you have the right to rely on compensation for harm caused to health. The proof of such harm can be medical documents, stating the direct relationship between the accident and health impairment. Keep all the doctors’ conclusions, prescriptions and payment receipts!
- Additional expenses, including: parking costs, living expenses in Georgia (if you had to prolong your stay due to the car inspection and repair), obtaining a visa, purchase of tickets, legal expenses (lawyer’s services) are reimbursed by the insurance company of the causer of harm via a judicial or non-judicial procedure under an insurance contract and based on law.
- All procedures – transferring the accident police report to the insurance company, conducting an examination, justifying disagreement with the examination, repair (with adequate feedback) take a long time.
One can minimize financial, time and emotional costs and should take precautions.
- In advance, expand the coverage of your full-coverage (CASCO) policy, which will operate abroad.
- There is no separate policy for traveling to another country. The owner of the car can increase the geography of the insurance coverage. In the event of damage to the vehicle, the policyholder will receive compensation depending on the insurance case. Important! A standard insurance contract that is valid in your home country may not suitable for traveling abroad. In the case you already have a full-coverage car insurance, you may conclude an additional agreement and just pay extra for amending the contract. The owner of the vehicle has the right to choose a specific period for which he expands the geography of the insurance policy.
- When applying for an extended policy, vehicle is insured for at least 1 month. When choosing the exact period, take into account that it should be a multiple of a whole month. Therefore, to insure a car for 1 month and 12 days will not work.
- Remember that no insurance company will insure vehicles for trips to countries where a state of emergency is declared or military conflicts occur. Not all insurance companies extend full-coverage policy to Georgia.
- Having got into an accident in Georgia, do not rely on luck, but rather call the lawyers right away. They will provide qualified representation and protection of your interests in the police, the insurance company, in dealing with the causer of harm, help to draw up objections and conduct an alternative examination of the amount of damage.
Just Advisors will provide legal and emotional support in a situation where something went wrong on the road.