Car Accident Claim

Car Accident Claim

A car crash is always stressful, to say the least. Taking the necessary precautions to avoid being a victim or perpetrator of a vehicular accident is always best.  

However, what must you do after getting involved in a car crash? What happens after you file a car accident claim with your insurance company? How does the insurance company evaluate vehicle damage? 

This article discusses the answers to these questions, including how the car accident claim works. It also tackles how and when to file this claim and if you can get insurance after an accident.

Furthermore, this write-up explains what to do when involved in a car accident, whether it’s your fault or not. It also explores what you can do if served with a car accident lawsuit.

Having a personal injury lawyer is crucial when dealing with car accidents. You have many factors to consider, which might be daunting for someone who has just experienced a car accident. 

If you need the help of a legal expert on car accidents, visit

Our website provides a vast directory of lawyers and law firms with varied specializations, including car accidents. You only need to select your state and browse the hundreds of available listings.

How to File a Car Insurance Claim

Imagine you’re in a car driving with one passenger, and all of a sudden, another car sideswiped your vehicle, causing you to swerve. Fortunately, you managed to control your car and pulled it on the side of the road while the other driver did the same. 

Filing Your Claim

When you file a claim, you must get all the information you need to document the accident. Afterward, you can call your insurance company, especially if you’re in a no-fault state. 

In serious situations where injuries require medical attention and hospitalization, you may acquire the services of a personal injury lawyer. These legal experts can represent you while you recuperate from your injuries.

What Happens After You Filed a Car Insurance Claim?

What happens next depends on the type of accident and the place where the accident took place. If the accident occurred in a no-fault state, each driver should file an insurance claim with their insurance company. 

Suppose the accident victim wants to file a lawsuit to get more compensation for additional damages not covered by their PIP. In that case, they will need to file a lawsuit. 

First-Party Claim

A first-party claim is when you file a claim with your insurance provider. An insurance adjuster will handle your case. Still, you can hire a personal injury lawyer to help ensure your best interests in an insurance claim. 

Third-Party Claim

Let’s say you’re filing for compensation with the driver at fault. You must also deal with the at-fault driver’s insurance adjuster in that case. Because this adjuster works for the other party’s best interest, it’s also best to get the help of a legal expert to ensure that you don’t get short-changed. 

Calculating the Value of an Insurance Claim

Determining the amount of damages and injuries sustained during an accident is no easy process. It requires accurate calculations and documentation of costs and expenses that resulted from the accident. 

You may need to include medical expenses, lost wages, and damages caused by the emotional stress of being involved in a car crash. Thankfully, insurance companies have created formulas that can calculate the amount to pay for injury claims and nonmonetary losses to a fair extent.

For instance, the insurance company adds all your medical bills and multiplies the sum by a factor they provide. Factors range from 1.5 to 5, depending on the severity of the car accident. The total loss is calculated and paid by the insurance company. 

Relying on Your Own Insurance for Accident Resolution

Your insurance company is your “friend” during these situations. However, you may need legal experts to help you when the insurance adjuster works more for the insurance company’s benefit than yours. 

In most cases, you should demand compensation from the at-fault driver. However, there are instances when relying on your insurance policy to handle accident resolution may be the only option. 

The following are instances where you need to work with your insurance company to resolve damages. 

The No-Fault States

The no-fault law states that in cases of accidents, each party involved in the accident must file insurance claims with their insurance provider. Consequently, these states may require drivers to have personal injury protection (PIP). 

However, it doesn’t mean you can’t file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver, especially if you feel that the perpetrator of the accident has wronged you. 

You can file all property damage on the at-fault party’s liability insurance. However, you need a lawyer to ensure that you do this correctly. 

An Underinsured Driver

Suppose you get involved in an accident caused by an uninsured driver. In that case, it’s best to have uninsured motorist coverage in your vehicle insurance policy. 

This add-on covers damages caused by a driver without any insurance. If you don’t have this coverage, you may need to rely on your collision coverage, if you have it. 

However, you can also demand compensation from the at-fault driver, which they may need to pay out of their pockets. Dealing with an uninsured driver who is at fault is complex, and it’s best to have a personal injury lawyer to help you determine the right amount of settlement you deserve.  

Not Dealing With It

You can always use your insurance policy to cover the car damage, especially if you don’t want to deal with the hassle of filing claims with the driver at fault. 

However, note that the money you may receive will have deductions. You may get reimbursements if your insurance company goes after the other party’s insurer. 

Getting Stuck With a Car Loan Balance

If you financed your car when the accident happened, and your car got totaled, you may get stuck with a loan balance. You might get compensated for the car’s value during the accident if you have gap insurance. 

Gap insurance covers the balance between the actual worth of your car and the amount you still owe. You may need to get this type of coverage if:

  • You made less than 20% downpayment.
  • The car is under a financing term of 60 months or longer.
  • The car is under lease.
  • You bought a car that depreciates more quickly than average.
  • There was a negative equity rollover from a previous car loan into a new loan.

PIP and the Role of Insurance Adjusters

PIP coverage is mandatory in some states while optional in others. This no-fault insurance covers medical bills and lost wages (under certain circumstances), regardless of who’s at fault in an accident. 

PIP insurance typically covers the following items.

  • Medical treatment
  • Rehabilitation expenses 
  • Funeral costs and services 

The insurance adjuster’s role in this kind of claim is crucial. This insurance personnel is responsible for investigating whether the claim is valid. 

They can consult the police who handled the accident, check medical or hospital records, and inspect property damage to determine the actual damage cost. 

The adjuster also verifies whether you received medical care and if the amount is accurate. The adjuster’s findings are vital in determining how much an insurance company will pay for the damage you’ve sustained during an accident. 

If you feel the adjuster didn’t provide an accurate report about the damages you’ve sustained in an accident, hire a personal injury lawyer. 

Car Accident Attorney’s Role in Serious Injuries

Sustaining severe injuries is one of the dire outcomes of a car crash. In this case, hiring a personal injury lawyer is a necessity. A car crash victim may be unable to do all the documentation and talk with the insurance company. 

A car accident lawyer or attorney lets you rest and focus on your recovery. At the same time, these legal professionals do all the hard work processing your insurance claims. 

Car accident attorneys can help you go through the complex legal processes of an insurance claim. They can also help you understand your rights in a car accident. 

Attorneys can also gather and protect evidence to support your claims or lawsuit against the at-fault party. Finally, attorneys can ensure you get the financial compensation or settlement you deserve.

Pursuing Legal Action for Car Accident Compensation

There are instances when the coverage provided by your PIP isn’t enough for all of the expenses you’ve incurred. In this case, you may need to resort to legal action against the driver at fault and demand car accident compensation. 

Here are things you can do in this situation: 

Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit and Dealing With Underinsured Parties

There are instances where your insurance claims transform into a personal injury lawsuit because of significant damages that your insurance company can’t extend compensation. 

Filing a personal injury lawsuit may be inevitable, especially if you’re not at fault and you need the money to pay off the bills you’ve incurred and the lost time and emotional toll caused by the accident. 

If you need a personal injury lawyer, visit our website, You can access a vast directory of lawyers and law firms ready to help you with specific legal needs, like filing claims for personal injuries caused by car accidents. 

Statute of Limitations in Personal Injury Cases

Under personal injury law, a statute of limitations denotes the maximum time after an accident when legal proceedings can start. 

It means that as a car crash victim, you have a definite amount of time to file a personal injury lawsuit before the court won’t accept it.

The exact amount of time may vary, especially between states. However, in most personal injury cases, the statute of limitations is typically between one to three years from the time of the accident.  

Addressing Hit-and-Run Cases

A hit-and-run is a traffic offense when a driver involved in a car accident illegally leaves the accident scene. 

Hit-and-run cases can involve a motorist hitting a pedestrian, fellow motorists, or an unoccupied vehicle or structure and leaving the accident site without exchanging proper information or cooperating with the aggrieved party or the police. 

Filling a claim for a hit-and-run case is a bit different. You may get compensation using the uninsured motorist coverage add-on or other insurance policies that provide coverage for this case.

Because a hit-and-run is a traffic offense, you must report the incident to the police immediately. Insurance companies sometimes require a copy of the police report to prove the insurance claim. 

Once the police locate the at-fault driver, you can have your lawyer file the necessary lawsuit to demand further compensation.

The Role of Time in Personal Injury Cases

Time is crucial in personal injury cases, especially with the statute of limitations imposed by law, but that’s not the only thing to worry about. The progress of time can distort memories, physical evidence may get lost, and other crucial information fades with time.

You must document everything when dealing with a car accident, as you need all the proof you can muster to win your case. 

 Furthermore, some injuries may become apparent after the accident. So, it’s best to have a complete medical examination first to check for any potential problems that may happen down the road. These pieces of evidence can further support your claim or lawsuit. 

Always note that an insurance claim aims to get back what you’ve spent as much as possible due to an accident. An experienced personal injury attorney or lawyer can help you in this situation. 

What Should You Do at the Scene of the Accident?

You need to have the presence of mind and composure when an accident occurs. With that composure, you should do the following when involved in this roadside incident.  

Check Yourself for Injuries

If you’re the driver and you get involved in an accident, check yourself for injuries. Don’t make sudden movements, as you may have sustained fractures or internal injuries that are not yet apparent. Waiting for emergency personnel is best if you’re not in a dire situation. 

Check on the Well-Being of Your Passengers

After ensuring your safety, you can check the well-being of your passengers. Ask them if they’re hurt and advise them to stay calm and not move unnecessarily. 

Get to Safety

After ensuring your status and the status of your passengers, you should get to safety. If you can get out of the car and move to the sidewalk, do so. Also, if you can still drive your car, pull it to the side of the road. 

Call 911

When everything is clear, call 911 to get immediate help. If you don’t have a phone, you can ask one of your passengers to call for help. Depending on the state and jurisdiction where the accident occurred, you may need to call the police to report the car accident. 

The local law enforcement will create an accident report, which you can obtain a copy of once it’s filed for your reference. 

Wait for Help

Once you’ve called the police and 911, wait for them to arrive. If your car is still working, turn on the hazard light to inform other drivers of your situation. Also, don’t get scammed by “bandit” truck towers, which tow vehicles into shady facilities and hold them for outrageous fees. 

Exchange Information

Next, you should exchange information with the passengers and the driver at fault. You should get the following details when exchanging information:

  • Full name and contact information (phone number, email address) of people involved in the accident
  • The insurance information and policy number
  • License plate number
  • Driver’s license number
  • Accident’s location
  • Type, model, and color of the vehicles involved in the accident

Document the Accident

Another thing to remember is to document the accident scene. You’ll need all the information you can get when filing your insurance claim. 

What Information Should You Collect?

Don’t forget to get the following information when documenting the accident. You must have the following documents and evidence to support your claims, especially when talking to an insurance agent. 

Take Photos

Take pictures of the car damage, including your injuries and those of the passengers. You can use this as further proof when you file claims or a police report. 

You may need to take pictures of the roadside conditions, the other driver’s insurance card, and other things related to the accident. 

Get Police Officer Information

Ensure you get the information of the police officers who responded to the accident scene. You can get their badge number and the police officer’s name. Also, you can request a copy of the police report once they have filed it to check the details and accuracy. 

Contact Your Insurance Company

Contact your insurance company and inform them of the accident. However, you may need the help of a personal injury lawyer to ensure that you get the right coverage for the damages or injuries you’ve sustained. 

Get Roadside Assistance

If your vehicle isn’t drivable after the accident, you can call for roadside assistance to tow your car safely. 

Report a Claim

As mentioned above, you must report your claim to your insurance company. The insurance company will determine the validity of your claims, so it’s best to have all documents available.  

What Happens After You File the Claim With Your Insurance Company?

After you file a claim, the insurance provider will send an adjuster to assess your case and determine the amount your insurance company will cover.  

Notify the DMV if Necessary

You may notify the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) depending on the severity of the damages that resulted from the accident. The DMV is an agency tasked with managing vehicle registration and inspection for safety.  

Understanding Basic Car Insurance Types for Claims

It may come as a surprise, but different types of car insurance provide specific coverage. Below are typical car insurances purchased by motorists in the United States.

Liability Insurance

This insurance coverage protects against claims from bodily injuries to other people or property damage. Liability insurance policies cover legal costs and pay the insured party. However, this insurance type usually does not cover contractual liabilities and intentional damage. 

Collision Insurance

This insurance type provides motorist coverage when their vehicle sustains damage due to an accident, even if it’s their fault. Collision coverage is often an add-on or extension of a basic auto insurance policy, protecting drivers in the event of a collision in an auto accident. 

No-Fault Auto Insurance Laws

“Who’s at fault?” is often the first question to answer in a vehicle accident. Determining the person or driver guilty of causing the accident can determine who is responsible for paying damages. 

However, this determination is optional with the no-fault auto insurance law because drivers involved file their claims with their insurance companies. 

In states with no-fault auto insurance laws, the driver’s insurance company pays for the damages sustained in an accident, regardless of who’s at fault.

However, state laws differ when it comes to car accident laws. As of November 2023, there are 12 no-fault states. The following list indicates the state and the date the no-fault law became effective.

Personal Injury Protection (PIP)

The PIP, or “no-fault insurance,” is part of a car insurance plan covering the medical payments associated with a car accident. PIP insurance pays for the medical expenses of drivers, passengers, and uninsured individuals involved in the accident.

In states that have no-fault laws, each party involved in a car crash relies on their PIP policy to get the coverage they need to pay off injuries and damages they and their passengers sustained. 

However, the PIP has limits because these policies typically have a maximum number of people covered in an accident. The driver’s health insurance will cover the remaining balance if the medical bill exceeds the PIP coverage.

Have Patience

Patience is a virtue that’s crucial when dealing with claims or lawsuits against someone who caused the incident. Understanding the intricacies of these legal processes can help you not lose hope of getting the compensation you rightly deserve. 

You can also acquire the services of a personal injury lawyer to help you deal with your car accident claims. You can visit and search its vast directory of lawyers and law firms specializing in different fields of law.

Making an Insurance Claim Against Someone Else

You should claim insurance when somebody crashes their car into your vehicle. It’s within your right to get the compensation you deserve due to an accident. 

Filing an insurance claim may be tedious and complicated for some, primarily if it deals with getting compensation from an at-fault driver’s insurance company.

Many may not be aware of the auto insurance claims process and how car crash victims can demand compensation for damages incurred by the at-fault driver. So, people must know how this complex process works.

First-Party Claims vs. Third-Party Claims

First-party claims mean you file your insurance claims with your own insurance company. On the other hand, a third-party claim is when you file a claim with the insurance company of an at-fault driver. 

In most cases, insurance companies provide coverage options for their policyholders for third-party claims of people who sustained injuries in an accident. 

Determining whether to file a first-party or third-party claim depends on the following factors: 

  • The person who caused the accident
  • The kind of accident that happened
  • The coverage of the available insurance policy

Generally speaking, if you caused the accident, it’s best to file a first-party insurance claim. On the other hand, if another person is responsible for the mishap, you can file a third-party claim with the person at fault or their business or insurance company. 

Common Reasons Auto Claims Are Denied

Unfortunately, sometimes, a car insurance claim gets denied. Here are several reasons an insurance company could deny a claim: 

The Accident Was Avoidable or Preventable

One critical reason for a denial is that the accident was avoidable or preventable. It means that the drivers involved have shown negligence in ensuring the safety of their vehicles and passengers while on the road. 

One example of an avoidable accident is allowing someone without a driver’s license to use your vehicle, which led to a car crash. 

You Didn’t File a Claim in Time

It’s best to file an insurance claim as soon as possible after the accident. As mentioned above, time can distort memories, make evidence unavailable, and even make witnesses change testimonies, thus making them unreliable. In the United States, the time limit may range from one to twenty years. 

Delaying Medical Care

You may be tempted to delay your medical care, especially if there were no apparent injuries immediately following the accident. 

However, insurance companies may see this as suspicious and can be the basis for denying your claim. You should seek medical care immediately and have a complete examination just to be sure. 

What to Do if Your Auto Claim Is Denied

One possible outcome for an insurance claim is a denial. Once this is the case, you should ask your insurance provider to give you a written copy of the reasons for rejection. 

It’s crucial that you know the specific reason so that you can find ways to resolve issues and have your claim approved. 

If appealing the denial is daunting for you, you can acquire the services of a personal injury lawyer to guide you through this tedious process. 

Should You File a Lawsuit if Your Auto Insurance Claim Was Denied?

If your car insurance claim gets denied, you must decide whether you want to file a lawsuit to get the compensation you deserve. 

You can sue your insurance provider for breach of insurance contract for your first-party claim. Also, you can file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver for negligence that resulted in the car crash you’re involved in. 

The lawsuit route is complex, taxing, and can cost you more than an ordinary insurance claim. However, if this is the course you want to take, then it’s best to have the services of a personal injury lawyer. In most cases, you may want to resort to an amicable settlement with the at-fault party.

What Are Your Rights Under the Fair Claims Settlement Practices Regulations?

The following is a paraphrased version of the fair claims settlement practices and regulations, which are your rights as an insurance claimant. Insurance companies must do the following:

  • Advise you of your benefits, time limits, coverage, and other provisions included in your insurance policy.
  • Acknowledge your claim, start investigations, provide instructions and forms, and provide reasonable assistance immediately but not later than 15 days after receiving notice of the claim. 
  • Promptly respond to your messages within 15 days.
  • Accept or deny your insurance claim immediately, 40 days after receiving proof of claim or the documentation needed as evidence for your claim. 
  • Help you with towing expenses unless the insurance policy provides a specific towing company name to contact. 
  • Offer fair settlement when you suffer a total loss. The payout must reflect the value of a comparable vehicle of a similar kind and quality. Any deductions from the compensation must be fair, measurable, and discernible. 
  • The insurance company must pay the claim immediately once accepted but in no event later than 30 days when the settlement is reached. 
  • Advise whether they will pursue subrogation or legally pursue the at-fault party for damages. 

Automobile Insurance Fraud

Car insurance fraud happens when a party works with a dishonest auto boy and repair shop or another individual to do illegal or questionable techniques like the following:

  • Report damaged vehicle parts that are not damaged to increase repair costs.
  • Bill unauthorized repairs.
  • Charge for genuine part costs while using second-hand or parts taken from a junkyard.
  • Falsely report anything in hopes of collecting more insurance money.

Auto Body Repair Shops

State policy may differ. Still, the insurance company can’t dictate where to repair your car. In some jurisdictions, insurance companies may provide recommendations. However, they can’t compel you to pick the repair shop they prefer. 

Auto Replacement Parts

You can use aftermarket parts instead of original parts to repair damages to your car. Aftermarket parts are car parts that the original manufacturer does not make. 

These car parts may be better or equal in quality to the original. However, note that some aftermarket parts may be substandard. It’s best to contact a reputable repair shop for advice on repairing your vehicle properly. 

Inspection and Repair Process

After reporting your insurance claim, you can have someone do a damage inspection to determine further the exact amount of the damages that need to be covered. The inspection process may take around 30 minutes to complete. 

The damage inspector will see if your car isn’t safe to drive, checking the issues directly caused by the accident. 

If your car is still repairable, you can have it fixed anywhere, anytime. You can also get reimbursed for the repair cost. You only need to document everything to have evidence for your claims. 

How Do You Get a Car Repair Estimate?

Remember always to choose qualified car repair shops when filing an insurance claim, including repair cost compensation. The car mechanic can quickly assess how much the repair cost is and give you a written estimate. 

Note that a car repair estimate must include the following:

  • A detailed description of the repair work needed to return your car to pre-accident condition or working order
  • A clear breakdown of all costs required for spare parts, labor, and additional charges or fees linked to the repair process
  • A summary of the total estimate and a statement indicating that the expenses won’t exceed a certain amount without the car owner’s approval

A written estimate can help you and your insurance company know what to expect when you repair your car and include it in your insurance claim. 

How Long Do You Have to Repair Your Car After an Accident?

It’s best to have your car repaired after the adjuster has inspected the damage and estimated the repair costs for your vehicle. 

The legal process of an insurance claim is complex, and you need all the legal wit you need to ensure your claim or lawsuit goes in your favor. If you’re unsure what to do, hire a personal injury lawyer to help you decide the best course of action based on your best interests. 

How to Be Prepared for Accidents

Accidents can happen anytime, but you can be prepared when it occurs. Here are some tips you can do to be prepared during this critical situation, where every second counts. 

Important Tips

There are many tips online for insurance policyholders. However, you can summarize them into a few statements.

  • Read your policy, and don’t review it only after an accident.
  • Ask for help if you don’t fully understand your policy. Talk to your insurance agent for clarification.
  • Get a personal injury lawyer to help you with the complexities of an insurance claim or a lawsuit. They can protect your best interests and help you with your insurance claims and lawsuit filing. 

Things to Avoid

When involved in an accident, never do the following:

  • Start an argument with the driver at fault or their passengers.
  • Tell your story to everyone and not to the police or insurance company.
  • Sign statements admitting fault or promise to pay for damages without consulting a legal expert.
  • Sign anything when the at-fault party gives you money as payment for damages.
  • Refuse to show your driver’s license, vehicle registration, or evidence of financial responsibility once required by a police officer.

Talk to the Department of Insurance

If you feel that your insurance agent or any representative of your insurance company treated you unfairly or not in your best interest, talk to the Department of Insurance in your state. 

You can also discuss this with your lawyer so they can file your complaints with this government agency. 

Get Legal Advice: Filing an Insurance Claim After an Accident

Once you get involved in a car accident and want to secure your best interest, hire a personal injury lawyer. They can help you navigate the complexities of insurance laws and talk to your insurance providers to get the compensation you deserve. 

If you need a personal injury lawyer, visit and access our vast directory of law firms, lawyers, and attorneys ready to help you in your personal injury cases. 

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

1. Will my rates go up after I’m involved in an accident?

Suppose the insurance adjuster determines that you’re the driver at fault. In that case, your rates will likely increase when you renew your policy. Some insurance companies provide “insurance forgiveness,” which lets you avoid an increased rate upon renewal. 

2. What happens after I file the claim with my insurance company?

After filing your insurance claim, your insurance company will contact you for more details regarding the accident and the loss. They may ask you to provide them with a written or recorded statement about your account. The insurance company can also talk to other parties involved in the accident to gather more information to determine the eligibility of your insurance claim. 

3. What should I do if the insurance company does not contact me?

You might need to allow the insurance company up to 15 days to contact you after you report your insurance claim. However, if they don’t contact you by that time, or if you feel that your insurance provider isn’t responsive, you can report it to the Department of Insurance in your state. 

4. How does the insurance company evaluate vehicle damage?

The insurance company assigns an adjuster or appraiser to determine the damage to your vehicle. They will contact you for details on your car’s damage and repair costs. 

The appraiser may ask you to provide a competitive repair estimate if the damage is minor. Contact the authorized repair shop once you’re satisfied with their calculations. 

5. What will the company pay on a physical damage claim under a standard auto policy?

Physical damage coverage doesn’t cover every damage that happens to your car. Typically, this type of insurance includes collision and comprehensive insurance policies. 

Thus, insurance companies will generally pay whichever costs less between the repair cost for the vehicle damage and the actual cash value (ACV) of the vehicle. 

6. What is actual cash value (ACV)?

Actual cash value is synonymous with the fair market value of an item. It’s the amount a person is willing to pay without any pressure or influence to buy one. 

7. What is an appraisal provision?

An appraisal provision is a process of determining when appraisals made by two parties don’t agree. The two appraisals are given to a neutral umpire, and both parties must agree to an amount. 

Once an amount is set, the agreement is binding. Note that each party must pay for their appraiser, but payment for the umpire is shared. 

8. How is the check or draft prepared?

If the at-fault party wants to pay via check, they can name it to the insured, bank, or finance company. The repair shop can also be a payee if the car is repairable. 

9. Who is responsible for the balance of a car loan?

The borrower is responsible for the car loan balance, even if it’s stolen, totaled, or damaged beyond repair. If the claim payment is less than the remaining balance, the lender expects you to pay the difference. A “gap” insurance policy can help protect you against this predicament.

10. Will the insurance company pay for a rental car while mine is being repaired?

If your insurance includes rental car coverage, the insurance company is responsible for paying for any damages incurred during an accident. The coverage typically ends when your vehicle is repaired. 

11. What is a collision damage waiver, and will the insurance company pay these charges for the rental vehicle?

With rental agreements, you are responsible for collision damage while possessing the rented vehicle. 

However, you can pay for a collision damage waiver, which can help pay for any collision damage during an accident. The payment is an additional fee, which waives all or a portion of your obligation to pay for repair costs for vehicle damage. 

12. What is the salvage value?

As the term denotes, a salvage value is the remaining value of your vehicle after an appraiser determines it to be a total loss. 

13. What is subrogation?

Insurance companies have the right to recover damages paid to you by an at-fault party. When the insurance policy pursues a subrogation, you should cooperate. You’re also not allowed to make any deals with the third party, like releasing them from any responsibility for paying damages from the accident. 

14. Is the insurance company required to help me recover my deductible?

The insurance company must inform you whether they will pursue a subrogation. If this is the case, the insurance company will include your deductibles in the process. However, if your insurance company won’t pursue a subrogation, you must pursue your deductibles independently. 

15. Is my car covered all over the U.S.?

Yes, when you drive your insured vehicle to another state, you’re still covered by your car insurance. However, you must update your insurance policy if you travel through international borders. 

16. What can I do if served with an accident lawsuit (summons and complaint)?

You should notify your insurance company, mail your original documents to your insurance company, and keep a copy for yourself. 

Don’t talk or give statements to anyone except a verified company representative. Your insurance company will provide legal defense if the lawsuit is out of a covered loss.

17. Is a newly acquired vehicle covered?

Most policies automatically cover a newly acquired car to replace your old vehicle. It usually has the same coverage as your previous vehicle. Inform your insurance agent when you replace your car with a new one.

18. Can I get insurance after an accident?

You can get car insurance any time, but it won’t cover an accident that already happened. You can get same-day insurance to cover a newly purchased vehicle, but it won’t cover the past. 

In fact, you can get charged with insurance fraud if you attempt to cover an accident that’s already happened.

19. What can you do after an accident that is your fault?

Here are the things you should do when you’re involved in an accident that’s your fault.

  • Don’t leave the scene because you can be charged with hit-and-run.
  • Call the police, as in some states, calling law enforcement is required.
  • Check yourself and your passengers for injuries and call for medical assistance.
  • Exchange information with other drivers, passengers, and witnesses.
  • Take pictures and videos of the accident, damages, and injuries.
  • Call your insurance company and cooperate with their assigned representatives.
  • Acquire the help of a personal injury lawyer to help you navigate the claims or lawsuit processes. 

20. What happens in a “no-fault” accident?

In a no-fault state, people involved in an accident file their insurance claims with their insurance company. 

21. What should I do for a minor car accident with no damage?

You should first ensure that there’s no damage or injury. If it’s a minor car accident with no damage, it’s best to report the minor accident to your insurance company. 

For instance, you’re involved in hitting a structure, like a fence or mailbox, and it has no considerable damage. In that case, it’s best to talk to the structure’s owner and settle in an amicable manner. 

22. How long do you have to file a car insurance claim?

Each state has its statute of limitations when one can file a car insurance claim or a lawsuit. 

For instance, Louisiana has a statute of limitation of one year for filing a personal injury claim. Meanwhile, North Dakota has six years to file the same. 

You can check your state’s policy, ask your insurance company, or have the advice of a personal injury lawyer. 


  1. Personal Injury Protection: What it is, How it Works
  2. Insurance Claims After an Accident: The Basics
  3. How to File a Car Insurance Claim
  4. How To File A Car Insurance Claim
  5. Hit and Run Offenses & Legal Penalties
  6. Subrogation in Insurance: What it Is and Why It’s Important

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