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Car insurance: "friendly statement" and steps to be taken in the event of an accident

Verified 07 October 2020 - Directorate for Legal and Administrative Information (Prime Minister)

If you have a traffic accident, you must complete an amicable accident report with the other people involved in the accident. The amicable statement exists in paper version and in electronic version. It allows to note the circumstances of the accident: date, time and place of occurrence, identity of persons involved, etc. You must transmit it to your insurer after completing it. The situation is different if the accident takes place in France or abroad.

Accidents in France

If you have an accident in France, you may in some cases have the choice between paper and electronic reporting (e-report). The finding will allow your insurer to determine the level of liability of each of the people involved in the accident and calculate their compensation. To be compensated, you must report the claim to your insurer within 5 working days after the accident.

If you have an accident with your vehicle, you will have to make a finding with the other people involved and make a claim with your insurer.

You can use the e-report app to report an accident to your insurer in the following 4 cases:

  • The accident took place in France (metropolis or DOM),
  • The accident concerns vehicles registered and insured in France,
  • The accident concerns no more than 2 vehicles,
  • The accident did not result in personal injury (no injuries).

In other cases, you must use the paper friendly statement.

You can use the paper version of the friendly accident report in any case.

What is it about?

The European Accident Report is a document that allows the recording of information on the circumstances of an accident. It must be filled in by all those involved in the accident. This document will allow you to send your insurer the information you need to compensate you. Indeed, the insurer will use the document to determine the responsibility of each of the persons involved in the accident.

Your insurer must provide you with a copy of an amicable statement when signing the contract. You can ask him for more copies at any time. It is strongly recommended that you keep at least one copy in your vehicle.

FYI  

there is no official model of this. Each insurer has its own model.

Complete and sign the report

You must complete the front (part report) at the accident site, with the other driver, all on a single report.. The report must be signed by the 2 drivers to be valid. Once the front has been completed and signed by the 2 parties, you do not have to write anything.

Each party shall keep a copy of the statement after completing the common part.

The reverse side (part declaration) can be completed later, individually by each driver.

Use to help you with the instruction manual embedded in amicable statement..

If the accident involves several vehicles, you must complete 2 observations:

  • One friendly statement with the driver of the vehicle before you
  • Another observation with the one who followed you.

Please note

you can complete Part A of the report regarding your contact information and your insurance, and you can also attach photographs of the accident.

Refusal to complete or sign the statement of a driver

If the other driver refuses to complete the report (for example, if he is not insured) or to sign the friendly statement, you must identify the vehicle registration number.

Attempt to obtain testimony from those who witnessed the accident or the intervention of a police officer or gendarme.

If you have witnesses, try to keep their contact details so that they can be contacted later.

Fill in the report by reporting the other driver's refusal. Use the "Observations" part of the front of the report.

If the other driver escapes after the accident, write down the number of his license plate and notify the police to report the incident and to file a report of a hit-and-run.

Complete the report as indicated above by indicating the driver's leak in the "Observations" section.

Inform the insurance company and transmit the findings

Once completed, you must send this document to your insurer, either on site or by mail, or via the broker, within 5 working days after the accident.

You must inform your insurer, even if your accident opponent refused to sign the report.

You can send the report to your insurer by mail or hand it to him.

You can only use the e-report in certain cases.

What is it about?

The e-report is a free application to complete your report via your smartphone. He has same legal value the traditional paper report and allows a faster processing of the case by the insurer.

You must have the app on your mobile phone or tablet. You can also install it at the accident site, even if it is safer to have it at the accident site. It is available for free on the Apple store and Google Play.

Auto e-report via Google play

App Store Email

You can complete the e-report on one or 2 devices.

Once completed, you must check the information. A summary will be sent to you before the e-report is signed and sent to the insurance.

When you agree, you sign it on the screen of your device and then it is sent electronically to your insurer.

You will receive at the same time:

  • SMS confirmation of your e-report entry,
  • a PDF version of your report in your mailbox.

How do I use it?

You must have the app on your mobile phone or tablet. You can also install it at the accident site, even if it is safer to have it at the accident site. It is available for free on the Apple store and Google Play.

Auto e-report via Google play

App Store Email

You can complete the e-report on one or 2 devices.

Once completed, you must check the information. A summary will be sent to you before the e-report is signed and sent to the insurance.

When you agree, you sign it on the screen of your device and then it is sent electronically to your insurer.

You will receive at the same time:

  • SMS confirmation of your e-report entry,
  • a PDF version of your report in your mailbox.

In a traffic accident, if a person has been injured, the police or gendarmerie must be notified.

The authorities are securing the accident site. They shall draw up a report of findings on the circumstances of the accident and identify any drivers involved, passengers, pedestrians and witnesses.

Even if the authorities draw up a report, you must report the accident to your insurer, with the report to the friendly paper version obligatorily.

If you are injured, you must have a medical certificate issued by a hospital or a doctor. The certificate must specify the nature and extent of your personal injury. You must send it to your insurer, asking for an advance on your personal injury compensation.

If you did not report any injuries at the time of the report and you experience pain a few hours later, have them noticed as soon as possible by a doctor and report it to your insurer.

Warning  

be sure to complete the report as it accurately establishes the circumstances of the accident. If the patient is not properly informed, the insurance can assign half of the liability for the accident and increase your bonus/malus ratio.. In case of dispute, you can enter the insurance mediator..

In case of an accident with an uninsured driver, you can request a compensation with the Guarantee Fund for Compulsory Damage Insurance (FGAO).

Accident abroad

If you have a traffic accident abroad, you must complete a European accident report (or "friendly report") on paper. The friendly report will allow your insurer to determine the level of responsibility of each of the people involved in the accident and to calculate their compensation. To be compensated, you must report the claim to your insurer within 5 working days after the accident.

In the event of a traffic accident while traveling abroad, you must complete a European accident report (or "friendly report") in the clearest and most complete manner possible. Enter the contact details of the opposing party (including contact details, identity, insurer, police number and vehicle registration).

Use to help you with the instruction manual embedded in friendly statement..

The parties must sign the statement and keep a copy of it after completing the common part.

The reverse side (part declaration) can be completed later, individually by each driver.

If there are witnesses, identify them and their contact details.

If the accident involves several vehicles, you must complete 2 observations:

  • One friendly statement with the driver of the vehicle before you
  • Another observation with the one who followed you.

Please note

the e-report, which allows you to fill out a report in digital form with your smartphone, cannot be used in case of an accident abroad.

This observation being standardized at European level, the language in which it is written does not matter.

The copy you keep must be sent to your insurance company within 5 working days, preferably by registered letter, paper or electronic.

You must send this statement to your insurer, even if the opposing party has refused to complete or sign it.

Warning  

also check that your insurance is working in the country you are in. The list of countries in which your insurance covers you can be found on the green card..

The contact details of the assistance are usually indicated on the report and on the green insurance card. You should check before starting the trip if you have this information. You should also check if you have the details of your insurer.

If you have insurance legal protection, your insurer will take charge of the steps concerning compensation.

If not, you will have to initiate the procedure yourself.

FYI  

the national offices on the back of the certificate of insurance not competent for assistance, you should contact your insurance company.

The assessment of benefits varies depending on the country where you had the accident.

Check with your insurer for conditions.

You must keep all the supporting documents because the insurer could claim them from you. In particular:

  • Health status of injured persons
  • Repatriation costs
  • Repair costs
  • Towing and troubleshooting costs
  • Custody costs
  • Rental costs of another vehicle
  • Re-registration of a vehicle in case of replacement
  • Technical inspection costs in case of total loss
  • Loss of turnover charges for commercial vehicles
  • Loss of value of the vehicle if you keep it
  • Objects transported
  • Accommodation costs, if you need to stay on site for the repair
  • In general, any costs relating to the vehicle's return to conformity

If you are the victim of an accident in a European country with an uninsured driver, you must apply to the Fonds de Garantie des Assurances Compulsory de Damage (FGAO) in France. This body will manage your claim and, if necessary, will take action against the vehicle guarantee fund of the country in which the accident occurred.

The FGAO provides a claim form on its website:

Request compensation from the compulsory insurance guarantee fund (FGAO): victim of a traffic or hunting accident

All claims must be accompanied by a description of the damage and supporting documents.