What Is First Notification of Loss (FNOL) in Car Insurance Claim Process

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Mudit has been using his car for his daily commute for the past five years. He drives almost 30 kilometers around Delhi NCR to his factory and then returns home in the evening. A few days ago when Mudit was leaving his factory, he was not able to find his car. This was due to the fact that there was no secure parking facility available near his factory. After searching for some time, he had to face the fact that his car had been stolen. Mudit next went to the nearest Police station to file an FIR. When he thought of claiming the car insurance; however, he was confused that what should be his next step. When he searched online he came to know that he needs to send the First Notification of Loss to the insurance company. Many people like Mudit face this issue because they know nothing about the car insurance claim process.

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What is the First Notification of Loss?

The First Notification of Loss, also called FNOL is the first notice you provide to your insurer in a situation where your insured car met with an accident. You can consider this as the first step you need to take to file a claim under the car insurance plan. Therefore, whether it is a car accident or a theft case, damage, or total loss, the first intimation to the insurance company is called the First Notification of Loss.

How to file a First Notification of Loss?

From the time of the incident to settling the claim, car insurance claim process comes in several steps. However, the foremost step is called the First Notification of Loss. If you have been driving the car, it is you who has to inform the insurance company about the incident. To do so, you can give a call to the customer care service, which is available 24X7. On the basis of your FNOL, the insurer will send a surveyor who will reach the accident spot, and check the extent of damage caused to the vehicle. Only after the surveyor submits the report, the insurer will take the step of settling the car insurance claim process. Some new age insurance companies do provide technology-based solutions to notify the loss through their mobile apps. Further, in the event of the car installed with telematic devices, Global Positioning System (GPS) is used to track the vehicle.

What are the documents required to file an FNOL?

As the documents required to file an FNOL are concerned, the two documents are Registration Certificate and Driving License. However, you would be required to provide certain information to the insurance company, which is mentioned herein below:

  1. Policy Number: All the insurance policies come with their unique number. These numbers help in identifying, keeping a record, and several other back-end processes. Therefore, as you notify the insurance company, you must share your policy number as well.
  2. Asset Information: You have to share details of the insured vehicle. For example, the registration number of the car, age, make and model, and many more. However, this may vary from one insurance company to the other. So, you better ask the insurer about the information they are looking for.
  3. Personal Details: You might be asked to provide some basic information about yourself like your name and mobile number. This information is used for verification. However, you must not provide information such as your bank details, CVV number, Credit Card number, etc.
  4. Details About Loss: You have to share details about how the car got involved in an accident. You might even need to provide information about the party who is at fault. 


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While you are providing all this information, make sure you are giving only the true information. It is not very wise to hide or lie about any facts.

Why initiating FNOL is important?

It is very important to initiate FNOL very clearly. While doing so, you need to consider the fact that taking this step at the earliest is very important and you may get the desired help. If you make a delay in the process, it may result in the claim rejection.

One of the reasons why your claim may get rejected is that the insurance company finds it necessary to inspect the damaged car before they accept the claim. If you take a lot of time or days to initiate FNOL, much evidence will be missing, which could be important for the insurer to know and see.

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Some questions you may ask during FNOL

As you initiate FNOL, you might be asked a few questions by the insurance company. And once it is registered, you can go ahead and ask some of the questions. A few of them are mentioned below here:

  • If a soft copy of the documents will work?
  • If there will be an inspection? If yes, when?
  • Where can the claim process be tracked?
  • What kind of notification will you receive about the process?

Making sure that your FNOL has been shared with the insurer goes a long way in making sure that your insurance claim is processed smoothly. You can also visit the Insurance Samadhan website and learn more about ways to make your insurance claims get processed without any hiccups.

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