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When to Involve Your Insurance Company After a Car Accident

Posted on 03/18/24 by admin in Auto Accidents

Even under the best possible circumstances, a car accident is a disruptive and frustrating experience. Even if the accident occurred through no fault of your own, you still face weeks of headaches. It can be tempting to cut corners and try to minimize the amount of work you have ahead of you. You may ask yourself; “is it really necessary to involve my insurance company if the crash wasn’t my fault?” The answer is invariably yes. Today’s blog post will explore and explain when to involve your insurance company after a car accident even if you’re not at fault.

when to involve your insurance company after a car accident

Understanding “At-Fault” vs. “No-Fault”

Before we can begin in earnest, it’s important to contrast the different ways state law shapes car accident responses. Even within our own region, there are key differences between states. Maryland and Virginia are “at-fault” car accident states. This means that drivers at fault for car accidents are responsible for compensating those effected. This also means that car accident victims in these states can seek financial compensation from the at-fault driver for their injuries in the form of a lawsuit. Washington DC, meanwhile, is a “no-fault” state. This means that injured drivers generally need to seek compensation from their insurance company. Though certain exceptions do allow for direct legal action against the at-fault driver in some cases.

If your accident occurred in a “no-fault” state, then obviously you’d want to contact your insurance. They represent the best resource available for receiving compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. However, if you’re in a “at-fault” state, your insurance company can still help you in several key ways post-accident. Let’s summarize them below.

When to Involve Your Insurance Company After a Car Accident

Collision and Towing Coverage

Let’s say you’ve been involved in an accident where you were not at fault. Your car needs repairs, but the other driver’s insurance company isn’t accepting responsibility for the accident. This is where collision coverage on your insurance company can be a lifesaver. This collision coverage allows your insurance company to pay for the cost of repairs and then seek reimbursement from the at fault driver’s insurance company.

In addition, if your car is damaged to the point where it requires towing away from the scene, your insurance can cover the costs associated with towing. Again, your insurance will cover these costs and then seek to be paid back by the at-fault driver’s insurance company. If they successfully recover these costs from the other insurance company, then there’s no danger of your insurance rates going up.

These services can only be utilized to their greatest effect if your insurance company is notified promptly after the accident. If you don’t notify your insurance, you may be paying for these services out of pocket.

car accident

Uninsured Motorist and Medical Expense Coverage

For another hypothetical; let’s say the at-fault driver in your accident is either uninsured or has insufficient insurance to fully compensate you. In situations like these, your own insurance’s uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage may be the key to receiving the compensation you are entitled to.
Additionally, your insurance may also have coverage for any medical expenses you may incur as a result of the accident. This medical expense insurance will even pay out if you are judged to be at fault for you accident, giving it even more utility.

A Defense Against Claims

Perhaps most importantly; your insurance company can defend you in the event that the other driver tries to claim you were at fault for the accident. Keep in mind that, given the nature of at-fault car accident law, the other driver has incentive to try and shift blame onto you. This is doubly true in contributory negligence states like Virginia and Maryland where even a small degree of responsibility can bar injured drivers from recovery. Your insurance company is required to defend you from any claim free of charge.

car accident injury

How Malloy Law Can Help

Malloy Law Offices formally encourages all our readers, clients, friends, and fellow Beltway Region drivers to purchase as much insurance as they can reasonably afford. In the event of an accident, a robust insurance policy can be one of your best assets. A trusted personal injury attorney can also be one of your best assets. Malloy Law Offices is home to the area’s car accident specialists. Our experienced and diverse team can help you negotiate a settlement which accounts fully for all expenses incurred as a result of your car accident, as well as your lost property and pain and suffering. Don’t wait to seek compensation. Contact Malloy Law today for a free consultation.