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Noyes, Hall & Allen Blog

What Should I Do When Someone Hit My Parked Car?

January 28th, 2011     Noyes Hall & Allen

This week alone, two of my friends’ parked cars have been hit by someone else. A responsible person would leave their contact information for the poor victim, but that doesn’t always happen. If you can’t identify who hit your car, you have little recourse but to use your own insurance.  However, if you can identify the other party, this information may be helpful.

What To Do If Someone Hits Your Car?

  • If it’s safe to do so, get the person’s name, address, phone number and insurance company information – BEFORE the police arrive!
  • Call the police if the total damage (both vehicles) appears to be more than $1,000. If there’s visible damage – even minor – it’s probably more than $1,000.
  • Give your statement to the police. Don’t admit any fault to the other driver, or argue about whose fault the accident was.
  • Report the accident to your Maine auto insurance agent.

Should I Use My Insurance or Theirs?

If the accident was clearly the other driver’s fault, try their insurance first.  Using their insurance avoids having to pay your collision deductible, allows you to keep your Maine car insurance discounts, and contains no daily limit on rental coverage. Of course, if  you’re a victim of a hit-and-run accident, you have no choice but to use your own insurance. Your local insurance agent can help you start the process.

Use their insurance if:

  • You got their insurance information at the scene, or can quickly get the police report (many police reports aren’t available for several days).
  • Their insurance company accepts responsibility quickly (within 24 hours after you contact them).
  • You did not buy collision coverage on your own policy.

The Other Company isn’t Responding After the Accident

The other insurance company will not accept responsibility for the accident until they can confirm liability. They do this in one of three ways:

  • Their insured tells them that they were clearly at fault (e.g. hit your parked car, rear-ended you at a stop light).
  • The police report says the other driver was at fault (but remember police reports may not be available for several days).
  • Based upon their discussions with you and with their insured, they determine that their insured was at fault.

If it’s taking too long for the insurance company to accept responsibility, you may want to make a claim on your own policy.  Although you’ll have to pay your collision deductible, and any auto rental expense that might be above the car rental limit you bought on your policy, at least you’ll get your car fixed, and put the accident behind you.

Will I Get My Deductible Back if My Insurance Company Collects from the Other Insurance Company?

Yes. After they collect from the other insurance company (a process called “subrogation”), your insurance company will reimburse your deductible, and wipe the accident off your record.

Who Will Help Me Deal With The Other Insurance Company?

That depends on where you bought your insurance. Technically, your claim against the other insurance company has no effect on your insurance company or your policy. If you bought your car insurance or Maine commercial vehicle insurance from an independent local Maine insurance agent like Noyes Hall & Allen, we will help you report that claim to the other company. If you bought your Maine car insurance online, you’re probably on your own.

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There are 4 comments for “What Should I Do When Someone Hit My Parked Car?”
  • James thinks:

    I was parked the other guy hit me now his insurance is playing around I am not able to drive the truck for work or get to school I got liability insurance and I have bills plus I have paid 200 dollars for rides to school and home from school

  • Noyes Hall & Allen thinks:

    James, if someone hit your legally parked car, and they had valid insurance, they should pay for damage to your truck. They should also pay reasonable costs for your transportation while your truck is not driveable. Even though you didn’t have collision coverage on your truck, your local insurance agent might be able to help you deal with the other company. We hope you can resolve your issue soon and satisfactorily.

  • JOSE thinks:

    JUST PURCHASED A CAR. I HAD IT PARKED OUTSIDE MY HOUSE. NEIGHBOR BACKED INTO IT. SHOULD THEIR INSURANCE COVER IT ?
    MY CAR DOESNT HAVE A PLATE OR INSURANCE :/

  • Noyes Hall & Allen thinks:

    Jose, it doesn’t matter whether your car was registered or insured. If your car was legally parked and someone hit it, their insurance should pay for it.

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