Walking out to get in your car to go to school or work in the morning and realizing that it’s been in a hit and run accident is a terrible feeling. Nothing quite matches that sinking feeling in your gut. Once you get over the shock and feeling of violation, however, you have to start thinking about repairs. And that gets you thinking about costs. Will your insurance cover you in the event of a hit and run accident? It might, but there are a few factors that have to be taken into consideration first.
If you are going to be covered at all, however, you need to start taking the right steps immediately.
What to Do When Your Parked Car Has Been Hit
Make a Police Report
The very first thing you should do is call the non-emergency police number and request that an officer come out and document the accident. They’ll work with you to make an official accident report, which will be crucial in determining if, and how much, your insurance will cover. Don’t forget to get your own copy of the report, too. You’ll also want to write down the name of the officer who assisted you, as well as their badge number.
Document Everything You Can
Documentation is going to be an ongoing theme when it comes to getting covered for this accident, so you should be taking notes on everything you can think of. Write down where your car was located, what the weather was like, and how long the car had been parked there. Write down when you last saw your car undamaged. Back up your notes by taking plenty of photos as well. Take photos of the car as a whole from different angles, and of the damage, both in context with the rest of the car and close-up.
Contact Your Insurance Company
The next step, of course, is to contact your insurance company. You want to do this as soon as possible, so that all the details surrounding the circumstances of the accident are fresh in your mind. Your insurance agent will walk you through the claims process.
How Much Will Be Covered?
How much of the damage will be covered by your insurance company will depend on what sort of coverage you have. Collision coverage, for example, usually doesn’t require anyone to be at fault, so the fact that the other driver can’t be held accountable isn’t an issue. This may or may not cover the entire amount of your claim.
If you have uninsured motorist property damage coverage as well, then you can file a claim under this coverage, too. When a driver flees the scene, as in a hit and run with a parked vehicle, most insurance companies consider them to be “uninsured” since there is no way to contact their insurance company.
Collision coverage is by far the most common of these two types of coverage. Regardless of which type you file under, however, you should also be aware that you may be responsible for a deductible before your insurance company will cover any damages. You’ll be able to determine your deductible by looking through your policy or asking your agent.
It can be very stressful realizing that your car has been damaged, and that you don’t know who did it and can’t hold them accountable for their actions. However, with good insurance coverage, the process will likely run very smoothly and you’ll be back on the road in your own vehicle in no time at all.