If The Accident Was The Other Guy’s Fault, Do I Still File A Claim With My Insurance?

One of the most common questions following a car accident is “Do I file a claim with my insurance, the other person’s insurance, or both?”  As explained below, the quick answer is that you may want to file with both insurance companies, especially if the wreck was not your fault.

Stop Reading And Call Us! We May Be Able To Take Care Of Everything!:

At Flattmann Law, we can take care of every aspect of an insurance claim, including the initial filing of claims following a car wreck.  This means you don’t have to file a claim with anyone.  If we take your case, we can take care of that for you! 

Filing A Claim With The At-Fault Driver’s Insurance Company:

If the accident was caused by the other driver, make sure to file a claim with their insurance company as soon as possible.  Sometimes, the other driver has already reported a claim and a claim is already set up and all the insurance company needs is your information.  Sometimes, however, a new claim has to be set up, which can take a good deal of time over the phone.   

Why You Should Also Report The Claim To Your Insurance Company:

“Why would I report the claim to my insurance company if I’m not at fault?”  “Won’t that just raise my rates?”  I know that people are hesitant to report insurance claims for fear that their rates may go up or that they may get cancelled. 

But rest assured that by law, insurance companies in Louisiana are not allowed to raise your premium or cancel your insurance based on “no-fault incidents.”  Louisiana Revised Statute 22:1284 prohibits insurance companies from increasing rates, cancelling, or failing to renew any motor vehicle insurance policy based on one or more no-fault incidents, meaning an accident involving a vehicle covered by a policy in which the driver of the insured vehicle was not at fault. 

One reason for reporting the claim to your insurance company is that it may be required by your insurance policy.  Typically, the fine language in the insurance policy requires policyholders to report any accident or potential claim to the insurance company as soon as possible.  If you don’t report an accident, the insurance company may try to hold that against you if you have to file a claim in the future.

A second reason for filing a claim with your insurance company is to make sure they hear from you first regarding the accident.  Remember that anyone can file an insurance claim.  You don’t want your insurance company to hear from the other driver first, even if they are lying about the facts of the accident in an attempt to skirt responsibility.  Also, the at-fault insurance company will likely check to make sure your insurance was valid at the time of the accident.  In Louisiana, this is called the “no pay, no play” rule, which requires a claimant to have their own valid insurance.    

Finally, another reason for filing a claim with your insurance company is that it may be the quickest way to resolve your property damage and rental claim.  If you have collision coverage (which is optional coverage), going through your own insurance company for an accident is typically faster than waiting on the at-fault insurer to investigate the claim.  (Check out our other articles on collision coverage).  Also, if the at-fault party did not have insurance or had only minimum coverage, you may have claims with your own insurance company if you have optional coverages like UM or med-pay.

Have You Been Injured In A Wreck And Feeling Overwhelmed With The Insurance Claim Process?

 If you have been injured in a wreck and feeling overwhelmed about the insurance claim process, contact us online or call our Covington office directly at 985.590.6182 to schedule your free consultation today. Flattmann Law serves clients on the Northshore, including Covington, Mandeville, Abita Springs, Bogalusa, Franklinton, Folsom, Madisonville, Goodbee, Hammond, Lacombe, Pearl River, and Slidell.

Grady Flattmann
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Local Covington, Louisiana attorney focusing 100% on personal injury matters.