If you are involved in a collision, you may be wondering if you should take care of the collision with or without involving your insurance company. There are certainly times when it makes sense not to contact insurance and to settle privately just as there are times when involving insurance is a better choice.
There are a few things to consider before you decide to settle a car accident. Here’s what to keep in mind before deciding if you do or don’t want to involve the insurance company.
Settling without insurance
You may want to settle without insurance if you believe the incident is minor and that you’re sure there are no injuries. For example, a low-speed bump at a stop sign or a scratch from a door swinging into your vehicle’s side in a parking lot might be times when the damage is minimal and not worth involving the insurance companies. That being said, sometimes what appears to be minimal damage is more serious than you thought. Other times, you might have injuries that you didn’t think you had.
If you or the other driver believe that you should involve the insurance companies, then do so. However, for something that really is small, like a scratch on a door or a broken light, you may want to settle privately.
Settling with insurance
For most crashes, it’s better to involve your attorney while you work on settling with insurance. You should always involve insurance if someone is hurt. In fact, you need to contact the police and report the incident if there are injuries. Even though your insurance rate could jump because of the incident, you need to make sure that there is a police report and that you have a way to seek compensation from the at-fault driver. Involving insurance is important in cases with injuries or deaths since medical care is costly and likely to be needed.
Most states do require you to report accidents involving injuries, so do so if one has occurred. Though it might seem unnecessary, remember that injuries may develop over time, so it’s more important to get medical care. Calling the police and emergency team to the scene will help you get the care you need while starting a paper trail needed for your personal injury claim.
Additionally, if this injury happened on the job, working with an attorney after reporting the incident can help you qualify for workers’ compensation benefits as well.