Filing a claim and we're both at fault?

Should I file a claim with my insurance after a parking lot accident where both vehicles backed out at the same time into each other? Both vehicles backed out at the same time into each other. The other driver agreed we were both at fault. Having not seen each other. We exchanged information but did not call the police. Damage was minor to my car, with a little more damage to the other car. Now I’m unsure how to proceed. File a claim, contact the other drivers insurance or pay for my own repair?

Feb 14, 2018 Lexington, South Carolina

Ava Lynch

Feb 14, 2018

While fault can only determined by claims adjusters, it does sound like both of you would be determined to be partially at fault. South Carolina is what's called a Modified Comparative Negligence state. Which means, in the example of your accident, you can both be found 50% at-fault for the accident. Because of this, I recommend both of you paying for the damages out of pocket. The alternative would be your insurance companies paying for the damages to the other driver and both of you getting rated for an at-fault accident. Most insurance companies will charge you for 3 years for any at-fault accident. If the damage is small, as you described, the rate increase you both will receive will probably be more expensive than the damages. In fact, in South Carolina in 2017, an at-fault accident raised annual premiums by 44%. If it's determined the damage to your vehicle than you expected, the statute of limitation in South Carolina for a property damage claim is 3 years. 

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