I was in an accident; should I file a claim on my own insurance?

People often ask me how a claim might affect their insurance premium.  The question is; "I was in an accident that wasn't my fault.  Should I file a claim on my own insurance or the other drivers insurance?"  With this question, there are a couple of things to consider.  First, if you file the claim through your own insurance will it hurt your rate or will you be surcharged for it?  The answer is no.  Carriers don't question the claim, they question who was at fault, you, or the other driver.  If the other driver was determined to be 100% at fault, then the claim would not be a "chargeable" event for you on your insurance policy.  Now, if the other driver has insurance, why would you want to file a claim on your own insurance?  I'm not suggesting that you do, however some people choose to file a claim on their own insurance because the process is often easier and quicker.  There is a catch however; if you file a claim on your own policy, you will be subject to your policy deductible.

Your insurance carrier will subrogate against the insurance carrier of the other driver who was at fault.  This means they will require the other carrier to repay them for the claim amount they paid on your claim.  If they are successful, they will reimburse you for your deductible expense.

Personally, I would rather wait and deal with the other drivers insurance carrier even if it is a bit more of a hassle.  Even though the claim would not be chargeable if it were filed on my own insurance, it would still appear on my insurance claims report.  This is a report that follows you around and shows your claims history to insurance carriers.  If the claim were filed on the other persons insurance, no claims would show up on your personal report.  I just like the idea of keeping my report clean even though it's not chargeable.  At times, those reports can be mislabeled and could cause extra work for you down the road getting them corrected.  I have seen instances where someone was not at fault in an accident but their claims report shows "at fault."  In this case the insured had to go back to the insurance company and get a letter of experience that stated the driver was not at fault.

I hope you found this article useful.  If you ever have questions about insurance please call me.  Insurance Professionals of Arizona is a full service insurance agency.  We offer free quotes from multiple carriers for auto insurance, home insurance, life insurance, health insurance, dental insurance, business insurance and more.

We serve all of Arizona including but not limited to Mesa AZ, Chandler AZ, Gilbert AZ, Tempe AZ, Scottsdale AZ, Phoenix AZ. Call us at 480-981-6338 or visit us online.