Question

What do I do if the party at-fault claims insurance first?

When I was driving, the woman behind me rear-ended me. She was rear-ended too. I stopped at a reasonable time as I didn’t bump into the car in front of me. She was calm and both of us were assessing the accident. I was scared as this was my first accident, and I wanted to call the police. However, I was so intimidated and shocked that I couldn’t even think properly. She said, “We don’t have to call the police, We just exchange insurance and they’ll take care of it.”

Later on, when my sister kept insisting to call the police, she immediately said, “I’m offering you my info and insurance, I could just go and leave you with nothing.” So my sister caved and told me to just take a picture of her insurance and license. Then after that she left immediately. I’m scared cause she might be filing a claim when clearly she was at-fault. The conclusion was never stated, she only said that “no one’s at fault.” She never told me if she was gonna call my insurance or not. I’m just scared cause I don’t know what to do if she files a claim first.

Jan 20, 2020 Fountain Valley, California

Answer
Ross Martin

Jan 20, 2020

I'm sorry to hear about your accident, but I'm glad that you took pictures. It is hard to say if the police will show in some areas for a minor accident. If you can get them to show up and file a police report, this is what I would recommend in the future as it's your best line of protection against a fraudulent claim.

The good news is it doesn't matter if the other party files a claim first or files one in the future. Your insurance company doesn't want to pay out on claims if they don't have to. If the other party was at fault, they will discover this and deny the claim. They will also notify you and try to talk to you about the accident if the other party tries to file a claim against you.

On your end, go ahead and file a claim against their insurance to get the damages fixed. Also, keep track of any expenses associated with the accident such as rental car or rides to work as they owe you back for the transportation expense while your car is being fixed. 

Hope this is resolved for you shortly. Have a good day. 


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