How to File a Claim With State Farm

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Founded in 1922, State Farm is the largest auto insurance provider in the United States. Its “Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there” slogan references the company’s dedication to providing quality customer service and a smooth claims process. It’s a promise that State Farm follows through on because the company is known as being a quality insurer.

If you need to file a claim with State Farm, it’s a fast and straightforward process. Familiarizing yourself with what to expect from the claims process can help prepare you if you’re ever in an accident or have a covered event like a fallen tree damaging your vehicle.  Below is an overview of how to file a claim with State Farm. 

Key Takeaways

  • You can file a claim with State Farm via the phone, online, or the company’s mobile app. 
  • If you choose a repair shop in the State Farm Select Service network, you’ll enjoy some perks, like a limited lifetime warranty on the work and a guaranteed completion date. 
  • You may be able to use State Farm’s Photo Estimate tool to get an initial estimate of minor external damage in just 48 hours.

The Claims Process

Never filed a claim before? No problem. We’ve broken the claims process down into five easy steps. 

Decide How to File

With State Farm, you can file your claim on the phone, online or through the State Farm app, depending on what works best for you.

If you file by phone, you can reach State Farm at 800-SF-Claim (800-732-5246). State Farm agents are ready to take your call anytime, 24/7. Reporting a claim by phone might be the best choice if you have questions or prefer a personal connection. 

There are advantages to filing online or by using the app though. These digital filing methods allow you to upload photos and other documents, check your claim status, get electronic notifications, and easily communicate with your Claims team. The mobile app has a Photo Estimate tool that can evaluate minor external damage. Using this tool means you can get an initial estimate and payout within just 48 hours. 

Tell Us What Happened

No matter how you file your claim, you must identify why you’re filing it and what happened to your vehicle. You can choose from several different options: 

  • Car accident
  • Damaged windshield
  • Wind or hail damage
  • Stolen vehicle
  • Water damage

Claim Investigation

Once State Farm receives your claim, the company reviews it and begins investigating. The company might interview drivers and passengers involved in the accident. It might also send an insurance adjuster to inspect your vehicle’s damage and other involved vehicles. 

Learn Estimate and Repair Options

Next, based on that initial assessment, you’ll receive an estimate outlining how much State Farm will pay to repair your vehicle. If your vehicle is declared a total loss, the estimate will indicate how much you’ll receive for your car. 

Once you receive the estimate, you can choose any shop to repair your vehicle. If you choose a shop in the State Farm Select Service network, you could simplify the repair service process. 

When you use a Select Service shop, State Farm will pay the shop directly to make the repair process more manageable. You’ll only be responsible for your deductible, if applicable. The shop will give you a guaranteed completion date, which can be helpful if you’re paying for a rental car or getting rides from friends and family. Additionally, the shop will back its work with a limited lifetime warranty, giving you peace of mind. You can even have the shop pick up and deliver your vehicle back to you if you can’t get transportation to and from the location.

Complete Your Claim

State Farm will either pay the repair shop, send you a check, or deposit money into your account to cover the repair costs to your vehicle. Once you have the work completed, the repair shop might reach back out to State Farm to let them know about any additional damage found. Based on this extra information, State Farm could adjust the total amount they pay you for your claim.

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What to Do After an Accident

Car accidents are stressful and upsetting, but staying calm and following these five steps is essential. 

Get to Safety

If the accident is minor and your vehicle is driveable, move it to a safe area so the car is out of traffic. Put your car in park, turn it off, and turn your hazard lights on. If you have cones, flares, or safety triangles, put them out to help other drivers see your vehicle. 

Get Help

Check everyone in the accident for injuries, and call an ambulance immediately. Remember, certain injuries like head injuries may not be apparent immediately, so it’s a good idea to have everyone evaluated, just in case. 

Call the police, too. Even if your car accident is minor, the police will file an accident report and gather critical information from the other driver, which will help you file a claim. 

Collect Information

While the police gather some information, it’s a good idea for you to collect certain information, too. If possible, get the names of all drivers and passengers involved, the make, model, year of each vehicle,  license plate numbers, and insurance information. Ask witnesses for their names and contact information, and record the time and location of the accident. Get the name and badge number of the responding police officer, too. 

If it’s safe, try to take photos of all of the vehicles, including close-up photos of any damage. Be sure to get clear pictures of the damage to your car. You can upload those if you file a claim online or on the mobile app; submitting those photos may help speed up the estimate process. 

File a Claim

You can file a claim immediately, even if you don’t yet have the police report or you’re still gathering information. Additionally, you can add more information to the claim once things are calmer. It’s important that you notify State Farm of an accident or claim as soon as possible. Starting the claims process right away means you are likely to get an estimate and be able to repair your vehicle sooner. 

Get Roadside Assistance

If your vehicle isn’t drivable, you can request roadside assistance from State Farm by calling 855-259-8568. Roadside assistance can tow your vehicle to the nearest repair shop. This service can give you peace of mind after an accident or if you’re on the road and need help with a dead battery or run out of gas. 

A police officer can call a tow truck if you don’t have roadside assistance, but you will need to pay for towing your vehicle to a repair shop.

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Is it worth it to file an auto insurance claim? 

The only time when it may not be worth it to file a claim is if the damages cost less than your deductible. In that case, you can pay the damages out-of-pocket without getting your insurance company involved which might lead to higher rates when you renew your policy. Otherwise, it’s a good idea to file a claim because you’ll pay substantially less out-of-pocket. 

How do I make a claim? 

The steps for filing your claim will depend on your car insurance company and whether your insurer allows you to file claims over the phone, online, or by using a mobile app. No matter the method you use to file your claim, it’s essential to gather information, including the contact information of others involved in an accident and when and where it occurred. 

Is State Farm good about paying claims? 

The J.D. Power Claims Satisfaction Survey scores car insurance companies based on customer satisfaction with their claims process. In the 2021 survey, State Farm earned 892 out of 1,000, which is higher than the average score of 880 out of 1,000. That higher-than-average score indicates that State Farm is good about paying claims and maintains high customer satisfaction.

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