Car insurance providers are used as a way to protect your finances if you are ever faced with an accident or incur damage to your car. There are different systems for car insurance but most states in the US operate under a tort system. What this means for drivers is that you only need to file a claim if you are held liable for the accident. If someone files a claim against you, then they are holding you accountable for the accident and damage to your car. This can be a tricky situation, especially if you do not believe you are at fault for the accident or if the claim is fraudulent. The best thing to do is someone else files a claim against you is to contact your own insurance provider for assistance.
Insurance Claims where you are Liable
If you are faced with any type of car accident, from a minor single vehicle accident to a theft claim, from flood damage to your car to a serious multiple vehicle pileup, it is important to report the event to a police officer. This is because the officer at the scene is required to file a report and will include all the details of the incident, including who is held liable for the accident. The police officer will speak to all parties involved as well as witnesses to determine what has happened. It is the police officer’s report that determines who is liable for the accident and who needs to pay for the damage.
If someone files a claim against you and are held liable for the accident then you will need to file a claim to your insurance provider as well with your side of the story. You can expect your premiums to go up as your provider will need to use your coverage to pay out the injured parties and pay for any repairs to their cars. If you have full coverage, then your provider will also compensate you for your own losses to your vehicle and medical related costs.
Fraudulent Insurance Claims Against You
If someone files a claim against you and you were not at the scene of the accident, then you could be faced with a fraudulent claim and you need to get this cleared up as soon as possible. You could be faced with higher premiums if your insurance agency pays the driver even though the claim was false. If there is no police report of the incident then there the other driver does not have a case against you.
When someone files a claim against you or when you make a claim to your own provider, an insurance representative will contact you to get more details about the incident. If you are contacted about an incident that you were not aware of, then you need to find out what has happened and explain your side of the story. You may find out that someone else in the family was driving your car but ‘forgot’ to tell you about the accident. In any case, if there is a police report and your car is at the scene and held liable, then your provider will need to pay for the damages.
Having a claim filed against you can increase the costs of your premium; however, it also saves you in the long run. While you can expect a bit of a rise in your annual car insurance rates, this amount is nothing compared to the out-of-pocket expenses incurred if you are not adequately insured.