Returning to your car only to realize its been hit can be a frustrating and stressful situation. Tens of thousands of crashes occur in parking lots and garage structures every year. While a number of those collisions result in injuries and fatalities, a significantly higher number result in property damage to a parked car whose driver is not present. It’s common for claims to spike around the holidays because more people are out and about shopping; however, your parked car could be hit anywhere.
Filing a claim for an accident for which you weren’t present for can be confusing, which is why our attorneys are here to ensure you receive the compensation you need to repair your vehicle and continue on with your everyday tasks.
Someone Hit Your Car and Left a Note
While it’s easy to become angry and upset when you realize your car has been hit, it’s important to remain calm and focus on remedying the situation. If the driver left a note, you’re in luck. Hopefully, that note will contain their contact information, in addition to the information for their insurance company. This can make the process easier when trying to obtain compensation to fix the damage. If the property damage isn’t bad and you’re able to drive your vehicle, you’ll first want to determine how much it’s going to cost to fix your car. Visit multiple auto repair shops to get an estimate.
After you know how much it’s going to cost to fix your car, there are a number of things you can do. First, you have the option to contact the driver and ask them if they’re willing to pay for the damages out-of-pocket. Depending on the cost and their insurance policy, they may or may not agree to this. If they do not, you can contact their insurance company and try filing your claim. If you do not have access to this information or the company does not get back to you, you can file a claim with your own insurance company.
In most cases, if you file a claim with your own insurance company you will need to pay the collision deductible out-of-pocket before you are provided with compensation for the repairs. If you discover the cost of the repairs is going to be around the same amount as your deductible, it may be a good idea to pay for them out-of-pocket to avoid a rise in your premium.
If you happened to be sitting in your vehicle when it was hit, you’ll handle the situation like any other accident. If you need medical attention or want to file a report, call 911. Collect contact information from the other party and get in touch with your insurance company.
Hit-and-Run Parked Car Accident
If a driver hit your parked car without leaving a note, you’ll find yourself dealing with a hit-and-run situation. You’ll want to contact the police and file a report with them. See if you can locate any witnesses or if there are security cameras in the area. If you have access to either, it will be easier to locate the person that hit your vehicle. If, after everything, the driver is not found, you can file a claim with your insurance company. You may want to consider seeking legal representation at this point.
Filing a Claim for a Parked Car Collision
A significant number of accidents in parking lots and other places where cars are parked occur when other drivers are backing up. Many vehicles are equipped with back up cameras and monitoring systems that can alert drivers of possible obstructions like other vehicles or people. Unfortunately, these devices do not always provide a clear picture for drivers as to what’s behind them. If drivers are too reliant on these technologies, they could end up colliding with a parked car, motorcycle, or a person.
Depending on the evidence surrounding your case and what your insurance policy looks like, you may be able to receive help with the costs of repairing the damage done to your vehicle. The following coverages can help you if someone hits your parked car:
- Collision Coverage. Typically, this will help pay for repairs or replace your vehicle if you’re hit by another vehicle, regardless of who is at fault. If you cannot locate the other driver, you may be able to file a claim with your own insurance company under this type of coverage.
- Uninsured Motorist Coverage. This coverage may help to cover the repairs to your damaged vehicle in the event the driver left and note and is uninsured or does not have enough coverage to pay for the damage.
If you have questions about filing a car accident claim or are looking for assistance when dealing with insurance companies, we have you covered. Get in touch with us today for a free consultation.