How To Make A Claim Against Someone Else's Car Insurance

Hopefully your car will stay whole and in great shape, but accidents happen, and when it is someone else's fault, you shouldn't need to shoulder the financial burden yourself. If someone else damages your car, here's how you can make a claim against their insurance.

A breezy, balmy drive to your office or perhaps a restaurant on weekends could become one of the worst days of your life. While your driving skills and expertise are enough to make sure you never hit another bumper, You can't say the same for other drivers. So what if someone just hits your car and entirely remodels the shape of it? The best way to manage it is by claiming someone else’s car insurance. And here’s how to do it.

While the process of claiming someone else’s car insurance is very simple, the other processes and factors that are needed before you file the claim make this process a very complicated mess. We’ll guide you through the entire process, taking into account all the possibilities so that you can be well prepared. First, let’s get some basics cleared out of the way.

Basics of Insurance

Liability Insurance: It is also called the “third-party insurance” as this insurance is not meant to cover your vehicle or personal damage but rather the damages you do to other vehicles in an accident. Liability insurance is mandatory in almost all the states in the US. This insurance along with the other two can get a bit expensive. But you can save a few bucks by getting insurance from a cheaper company.

Collision Insurance: This is the insurance coverage that covers all the vehicle damage done to your car by another car’s collision in an accident.

Comprehensive Insurance: This insurance protects your car from all the natural disasters or accidents which are not “your fault”.

There’s also No-Fault insurance, personal injury protection insurance, and underinsured insurance which we’ll discuss later in the article. Now let’s look at all the possible ways of claiming someone else’s car insurance.

How to Make a Claim Against Someone Else’s Car Insurance

So you got in a car accident, and the damage is quite a lot. Your car might be totaled, or maybe pancaked from the front. The first step is to make sure you are okay, then call 911 and get the cops involved. It is the most important step if you are involved in any type of accident.

Two instances are possible here. First, the person who hit your car might be present at the site of the accident. The other could be a hit and run, where the other car just zoomed past after hitting your car. Let’s look at the process for the first instance and then the second.

When the Other Person is Present

Here’s a step-by-step process of making an insurance claim against the other person’s coverage if the person is present at the scene.

Step 1: Whose Fault?

When the other person who hit your car is present, things automatically get way less complicated and easier. Here’s a little confusing thing; Do not argue whose fault it was. Just tell the cops what happened and better yet, if you have a dashcam (which you should always), then you have the evidence. Once it has been made clear whose fault it was, then move to the next step.

Step 2: Checking Coverage

The other person must have a liability coverage plan against which you can make a claim. Since it is mandatory, most states don’t allow the car to be out of the dealership without proper liability insurance. So exchange numbers, contact the other person’s insurance company for the next step.

Step 3: Take Pictures

Make sure that you properly document everything. Take pictures of your car and the other car which properly shows the license plate and the damage. It would also be smart to inform your insurance company about the accident.

Step 4: Inspection

The representative from the insurance company will examine every detail, even ask you a few questions to make sure it was a legit accident and not some insurance fraud.

Step 5: Paperwork

The final step is the paperwork after everything is good to go. This process might take some time but you are all set once you’ve reached this step. Do note that all these steps, from inspection to processing will take a good amount of time. So be ready to wait for a few months patiently.

When the Other Person is Not Present

It is very likely that in an accident, the person who is at fault will probably take off from the site to avoid charges. And if there is no way to trace the car, claiming insurance can get a little complicated. Here are all your options:

Collision Insurance: Since at the time, liability insurance cannot be claimed, you get to claim your collision insurance (if you have one). It is your best option to claim insurance in this scenario.

No-Fault Insurance: Common in many states, the No-Fault insurance, along with personal injury protection (PIP) can be used to cover the injuries caused by the accident. PIP and No-Fault insurance are usually clubbed together.

Underinsured Coverage: When the other person does not have liability insurance (perhaps expired), then this insurance will cover most of the damage charges. You need to get this insurance separately to claim it.

When not to claim insurance: Usually, insurance is to protect you from spending money on the damages to your car, but there are some instances where not claiming insurance is the best thing to do. In an insurance claim, you’ll have to pay a deductible before the insurance company pays for the damage. So if the cost of repairing your vehicle is less than the deductible, then it is better not to claim insurance. It saves you money and increases your no-claim bonus.

Penniless Parenting

Mommy, wife, writer, baker, chef, crafter, sewer, teacher, babysitter, cleaning lady, penny pincher, frugal gal

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