When to File a Car Insurance Claim — and When Not To

You don’t want to drive around a beat-up car. We have car insurance in order for this coverage to give us money after any type of accident or loss. And yet, when something happens many people are hesitant to actually file a claim. After the frustration and rage of backing into a pole comes the dread of a possible car insurance rate hike. How is a minor accident going to affect your rate? Even Los Angeles, CA with plenty of car insurance coverage are often tempted to keep the mishap a secret from the insurance company and pay for the car repairs out of their own pocket. So the question becomes: when should you file a claim with your California car insurance company and when should you pay for the damage yourself?

Tell your car insurance company and file a claim if

You made minor damage to someone’s car.

Even if they suggest you give them cash instead, you need to go through the proper channels for this type of accident. That means getting car insurance involved. This is in case they demand more money later. They could even call the police and say you left the scene of the accident and you’d have no proof otherwise! 

You cause serious car damage to someone else.

Always tell your insurer about an accident where you cause major damage. There might be more costly damage than you realize, and you don’t want to bring them in after the fact.

You cause a car accident with injuries.

If another driver or a passenger is hurt, tell your insurer. Injuries can easily lead to big medical bills. You don’t want to be paying for these on your own. That is exactly what you have car insurance for!

Consider handling the damage yourself if

You cause small damage to your own car.

Something like backing into a pole doesn’t necessarily need to have car insurance involved. This is particularly true if the damage is less than your collision deductible. There would be no claim payment, in that case, so making a phone call or online claim would just waste your time.

You accidentally cause a lot of damage to your own car.

If you don’t have collision coverage, there’s no reason to contact your insurer. If you do have collision coverage, you’ll need to weigh out whether the coverage of the damage you caused will cost you less in the long run than a potentially big spike in your monthly premiums. 

Pronto Insurance is here for you! If you’ve put a dent in someone’s car, hurt another driver, or caused serious damage, we want you to tell us so we can help you during this situation. Pronto Insurance makes it easy to file a claim and get the money you need to fix your car. Whether you go online, call on the phone, or send an email, our customer service is second to none. After all, what good is affordable insurance if you cannot actually get ahold of anyone to make a claim? You’ll never have that frustration when you’re covered by Pronto Insurance.