Do I have to be paid out of pocket for an insurance claim?
First question: if an accident happened on 7/30/2018 and it's not 8/3, is it too late to report it? Second: if the at-fault driver wants to pay for my damages out of pocket, am I required to do so? This is what happened. I was on street in stationary position after pulling out of driveway and the person across the street backed out of their driveway right into my car. They apologized gave me her insurance information. The husband wants to pay for everything out of pocket because he is afraid of his rates going up. I am able to drive my car but the dent is very noticeable. He wants to wait til Tuesday 8/6/2018 after 3:00 (after he gets off work) to take my car to his shop. He says he doesn't like to do anything on Mondays because he needs a day to himself after the weekend. Seriously? I am inconvenienced by having no car to drive while mine is getting repaired. Going to work next week, my doctor appointments, trying to get child to doctor & school, and other business, etc. Either way I am inconvenienced. Trying to decide if I should report this to my insurance.
To answer your first question, it is not too late to file a claim. The statute of limitations for property damage claims in California is two years. You can find more information regarding the claims process in our how-to file a claim article. Moreover, even if you don't file a claim, most insurance companies require you report any accident to them. It's ultimately your call on whether or not to file a claim. If you do decide to go out of pocket, I would recommend finding a shop that you like and trust and insist it is on your schedule. As the other driver is the reason you are without a vehicle, it is not up to them to decide. If you're unhappy with their behavior, file a claim. It is the responsibility of your insurance company to be on your side in these types of situations. Best of luck.