There are many people who believe that you do not have to report every accident to your insurance company. Some people think that if the damage is just minor, they will pay for the repairs themselves so that they do not have to make a claim. Most people fear that making a claim will raise their monthly premiums.
This belief is not accurate at all. If you have been involved in an accident, it is crucial that you report the event to your insurer, even if you feel that the event was small. There are three reasons that reporting the event is mandatory.
There Is A Potential For Being Sued
If you were involved in an accident of any kind that involved another person or vehicle, or if you had a passenger in your car when the accident occurred, you have the potential to be sued for damages.
The other party may have stated that they were not injured or that their car was not damaged enough to make a claim, but things can change. The other party may get home that evening and start to realize that they have been injured and that they need medical care.
If you have not reported the event to your insurer, when the other party seeks medical care, the insurance company is going to be unaware that they have an obligation to that person for their care. This can lead to serious legal issues and cost you a significant amount of money and time to correct.
You May Be In Violation Of Your Policy
Somewhere in the fine print of your insurance policy, you will find wording that requires you to report all accidents immediately to the insurance company. This requirement states that you must make this report, even if you are not personally seeking benefits.
If you fail to make the report to your insurer as stated in the contract, the insurance company can legally state that the terms of the contract have been violated, and the policy is no longer valid.
If the other party is seeking compensation for the accident and your policy is not valid, this could leave you personally responsible for all of the costs associated with the other party’s medical care, financial losses, and car repairs.
Not Reporting An Accident Can Make Repairs Very Expensive
It is common to select a higher deductible on your insurance policy so that you can reduce the amount of your coverage costs. Because of this, many people do not want to make a claim because they feel that the repairs will not equal their deductible.
The truth is, most repairs will exceed $2,500, even for minor accidents. The national average is $4,000 for repairs on a minor fender bender because there are so many electronic systems in a car that may need to be replaced. If you only have to pay $1,500 for a $4,000 repair, you are coming out ahead.
Not reporting a car accident to your insurer is something that could cause you significant legal trouble. If you have not reported an accident and now have a claim against you, it will be very important to consult with a car accident attorney.
Before making any decision not to report a car accident to your insurer, you are encouraged to schedule a consultation with an attorney. Your attorney can give you the best information about the situation.
Further reading: Calculating Car Accident Compensation