When it comes to the auto insurance industry, total loss costs from collision claims have been rising 13 percent according to a 2016 study by the Insurance Information Institute (III). According to the III's research, loss costs are defined as the dollar amount of claims per vehicle, per year. If you’re involved in a collision with another vehicle, you’re better off contacting your insurance company and filing a car insurance claim. But in the midst of rising car insurance claim costs, do you know when you should NOT file an auto insurance claim? Here's when you might consider not filing an auto insurance claim.
If damages don’t exceed your deductible
If repair costs are less than your deductible, if no one else’s property is damaged, and if no one else is injured, there is generally no reason to file a claim. Remember, your deductible is the amount of money that you commit to paying out of pocket before your insurance company begins to pay you any benefits.
If it’s a minor self-accident
If you accidentally damage your own car with no one else involved, you might be better off not filing an auto insurance claim. According to NerdWallet, there’s no reason to contact your insurance company if you don’t even have any collision coverage or if the damage is less than your deductible. In that case, there would be no claim payment from the insurer.
Example of when not to file an auto insurance claim:
Picture this: Your car insurance policy has a deductible of $500 and you accidentally back up and hit your mailbox. Your repair bill totals up to $700. No one was injured, and no one else’s property was damaged either. It might be OK not to file a car insurance claim because it’s such a minor incident and because your deductible will contribute a minimal amount towards your repair costs ($700 - $500 = $200).
In summary, here are a few conditions where it might be OK to not file an auto insurance claim:
- It’s a minor self-accident
- No one is injured
- No one else’s property is damaged
- Repair costs are less than your deductible
If you do file a claim...
When filing a car insurance claim, we recommend you cooperate with the investigation as much as possible by sharing the police report and any other important information. It’s also important to stay patient and know that any coverage issue can hold a claim up.
Remember, paying the other driver out of your pocket when you get in an accident instead of filing a claim can make it difficult for your car insurance provider to help if you get sued or something else goes awry. That’s why you’re better off contacting your insurance company as soon as possible in the event of a collision with another driver. Read your auto insurance policy and make sure you understand your obligations when it comes to reporting accidents.
At Infinity Insurance, we’ve made it a priority to give a helping hand in case of an accident. We understand this is a stressful and uncertain time, and we make sure you’re taken care of. Call one of our friendly agents at 1-800-INFINITY today to receive an auto insurance quote within minutes or get a free quote online.