Our roads and highways are the scene of more than 500,000 automobile accidents per year. Insurance companies pay billions of dollars to fix these cars, often through a process called subrogation in which each diver’s insurer pays for repairs minus deductible. The question as to who is at fault or blame is left for later.
When responsibility or culpability or negligence is clear, you should avoid paying a deductible by negotiating directly with the opposing insurance company. Many times, more often than not, the insurance company of the responsible party will not only pay for your automobile repairs without the deductible, but they will likewise pay for the use of a rental vehicle. Do not allow the other party’s insurance company to delay or postpone payment of the vehicle or for the rental.
Additionally, do not allow the other insurance company to wait for them to receive a copy of the police report, which many times can take several weeks. They should be able to determine whether or not their client/the insured is responsible for the accident and, at that point, accept responsibility and pay for the damages, as well as the rental vehicle.
We have seen many times in which insurance companies agree to pay for the repair and for the rental vehicle, but only pay for a short period of time, and then later state that they were not responsible until such time that they received a copy of the police report. Generally speaking, you can avoid the headaches with the defendant’s insurance company avoiding responsibility by contacting your own insurance company immediately. Let your company handle the case. You will probably have to pay the deductible at first, but if the other driver is found to be at fault, you should get the money back and won’t face a premium bump.
If you do chose to deal directly with the other driver’s company, get all the promises in writing in regard to payment of a rental vehicle and repairs to be performed.
Make sure the documents cover such items as for how long and for how much it will cover expenses such as a rental car. You will be in a much better position when it’s time to be reimbursed.