Auto insurance can pay to repair scratches to your car or another motorist’s, but how this works depends on multiple variables. For example, your insurer will consider your type of coverage and whether it covers the cause of the scratch. Also, your deductible will determine whether or not filing a claim for a scratch makes sense.
Here’s how auto insurance scratch damage coverage works.
Car Insurance Policies That Cover Scratches
Not all auto insurance policies cover scratches to your car. For example, your liability insurance won’t cover damage to your own car. Here are the types of policies that can cover dents, door dings, and scratches to your car:
- Comprehensive coverage: A comprehensive policy can pay to fix dents after a tree branch falls on your car while parked.
- Collision coverage: This policy covers your car for damage after crashing into another car or an object, regardless of whether you’re at fault. Such damage can include scratches and dents on your vehicle’s body.
- Uninsured/underinsured: When another driver is liable for the scratches to your car, their auto liability insurance should usually cover the damage. What if the motorist drove off, isn’t insured, or doesn’t have sufficient liability coverage? Uninsured/underinsured add-on coverage can pay to fix the scratches instead.
You can obtain comprehensive and collision coverage as a single package. However, these optional policies may also be available as two separate products. Both cover damage to the car itself.
When to File an Auto Insurance Claim for Scratches
Sometimes, it is better to pay out of pocket to repair scratches than filing a claim, including when you have comprehensive and collision coverage. Keep in mind that you’ll usually have to pay a deductible before your coverage can kick in. If the cost of your deducible is higher than the cost of repairing the scratches, it may be cheaper to just pay for the repair yourself and avoid filing a claim.
You’ll also want to avoid increasing your auto insurance costs. When you file a claim for an accident you caused, your premiums might increase. For example, denting your car after backing into a telephone pole is an at-fault incident that could impact your rates. Consider paying out of pocket if there’s only a small difference between the repair costs and your deductible.
If the accident involves another driver or person, you should file an auto insurance claim. The other motorist’s insurance should pay for the scratch damage if they’re liable. If you don’t notify your insurance about the crash, the insurer might deny you coverage in case the other motorist or individual later files a claim against you for this particular damage.
Will Your Policy Cover Scratches to Someone Else’s Car?
The objective of having a liability policy is to protect you against third-party property damage and bodily injury claims. This coverage will usually pay for the damage if you cause scratches to another car in an auto accident.
If someone else’s car gets scratched while you’re driving it, your liability insurance can also pay for the damage. You can file a claim even if you don’t own the scratched car. Still, the vehicle’s owner can also file a claim with their insurer to cover the scratch damage.
If you have collision and comprehensive coverage, your auto insurance can pay for scratches to your car. An uninsured/underinsured policy can also cover scratches when the at-fault driver doesn’t have sufficient liability coverage. To learn more about auto insurance policies, contact the experts at John E. Peakes Insurance Agency. We can help you select the right type and amount of coverage to have comprehensive insurance protection.