It’s a nightmare. You get into a car accident, and the at-fault driver won’t contact insurance. What do you do? Who do you call? It can be a frustrating thing to deal with.
Thankfully, you’re not at a total loss.
My Insurance Company Can’t Get a Hold of the Driver at Fault
Unfortunately, there isn’t much you can do to make the other driver cooperate. The other driver is not required by law to cooperate in any given situation. Their insurance may not offer them coverage if they fail to cooperate, but that doesn’t help you in any way.
When your insurance can’t get a hold of the person at fault, you may be left with some rather unappealing options.
If You Know the Other Insurance Company
If you know the other driver’s insurance company, pass on the information to your insurance provider. When your insurance can’t get a hold of the person at fault, they may have better luck reaching the other company directly.
Never reach out to another insurance company on your own. This is a risky thing to do, and it’s best to leave this part of your claim up to your insurance company or lawyer.
Get a Declarations Page
If you don’t know the other person’s insurance company and have no way of contacting the at-fault driver, get a “declarations page” from your insurance company to see the extent of your coverage.
In the very least, you may find that your coverage will be enough to fix all of your damages and pay any medical bills.
Get a Copy of the Police Report
If cars were totaled and you or the other driver contacted the police, then there will be a report on file. It’s best to get a copy for yourself regardless, but by getting a copy of the police report, you may be able to find the name of the insurance company of the at-fault driver if you weren’t sure previously.
Not all reports include contact information, so it’s best to find the name of the insurance company right after the accident.
If All Else Fails
If all else fails, seek out a car accident attorney. If your coverage is not enough or you can’t contact the other driver or their insurance company, you should look into getting an attorney to fight for your case.
Should I Talk to the Other Insurance Company After the Accident?
If you’re wondering, “should I talk to the other insurance company after a car accident?”
The simple answer is: don’t do it.
Only reach out to your own insurance company and never to the company of the other driver. You should never talk to the other insurance company after the accident. The at-fault driver is expected by common courtesy to contact his/her own insurance company.
After that, your insurance company should be the only one to contact the other driver’s insurance company.
Should I Call the Insurance Company of the At-Fault Driver?
You should never call or talk to the insurance company of the at-fault driver. The other company will do their best to save money and appeal to the driver insured under their business. They have no intention of helping you.
Why It’s Risky to Consult With Other Insurance Companies
One of the main reasons it’s risky to consult with other insurance companies is that they’ll ask to record you. Always deny a recorded call with other companies if you can.
The goal of the other company is to take a recorded statement about the accident. They want you to admit fault either in writing or on recording so that your claim will become invalid.
The best steps to take is to avoid calling or reaching out to the other insurance company at all costs. They are not your friend. Their goal is to save as much money as possible, and they will do what they can to invalidate your claim.
What Should I Do if the Other Person’s Insurance Provider Keeps Calling?
When the other driver’s insurance company keeps calling, you may not be able to avoid them. It’s best to remain polite and remember the risks that come with speaking to an opposing insurance company.
If you have an attorney, inform the insurance company to contact your lawyer to discuss your case.
Answer and Be Polite
If the other driver’s insurance company calls, answer and remain polite. Be direct and remain cordial. You do not have to agree to anything they offer, nor do you have to hold an extended conversation with them.
Let them know you are not interested in consulting directly with them and offer them a contact number for your insurance company or attorney.
DO NOT Agree to Any Recordings Or Written Statements
Do not agree to any recorded statements or written statements. They will most likely end the call if you refuse a recording. You are not required by law to agree to any recorded statements.
Be polite and decline their request.
Only Provide Your Name, Contact Information, and Address
If they do not hang up after you decline a recorded statement, offer them the bare minimum when it comes to information. Give them your name, contact information, and address. You should also give them the name of your insurance company and a number they can use to reach your insurance.
DO NOT Talk About the Accident
The other driver’s insurance company will likely want to ask you questions in regards to the accident.
Again, their goal is to get you to agree that you may have been at fault. Politely tell the agent on the line that you do not wish to talk about the accident. If they would like more information, they can reach out to your insurance company or attorney.
Tell Them to Contact Your Insurance Company
The most important thing to do is to offer them the name of your insurance company and a good contact number. All matters of your claim should be handled through the two agencies and not with you.
What If the Other Driver’s Insurance Won’t Pay?
This is a rare instance as most insurance companies of the driver at fault tend to pay the expenses required. If a police report was written and the fault of the accident was decided on-site of the accident, the insurance company is required to pay for your car’s damages.
The best thing to do if they refuse to pay is to pursue the claim extensively.
If you have proof of fault for the other driver in writing, use that to your advantage. It can be a tedious process to continue working with your insurance company to contact the other party, but in the end, it will benefit you.
If the other driver’s insurance company still refuses to pay for your damages, contact a lawyer.
In extreme cases where neither the other driver nor the insurance company is being cooperative, its best to reach out to an attorney to help you backup your claim.
What Happens If You Don’t Respond to an Insurance Claim?
If you’re at fault, the other insurance company will seek out your insurance provider, regardless of whether or not you respond to an insurance claim.
If the other party is at fault, it would be unwise not to respond to an insurance claim as it is likely in your favor. In this case, you’ve made the claim or the other party has been cooperative in settling the issue as quickly as possible. You’ll want to follow through to ensure you get the coverage you need.
If the other party inaccurately deems you at fault, get a copy of the police report as a written statement testifying otherwise. If you don’t have any written record of the accident or who was at fault, reach out to an attorney who can help clear up the confusion.
What if the Other Driver’s Insurance Company Doesn’t Accept Fault?
If the other driver’s insurance company is not accepting fault, the most common solution is to have your insurance company cover the repairs for your vehicle. If your coverage can repair your vehicle damages and handle any medical bills due to the accident, then that would be your best option.
Though it is not the ideal solution, it is one of the quickest and easiest to work with. Your insurance company will cover underinsured, uninsured, and uncooperative damages from the at-fault driver.
In most instances, you won’t have to pay anything extra to fix any damages.
When to File a Lawsuit
If your coverage cannot cover all damages or if you find it unfair that the other insurance company denied your claim, you also have the option to sue the other driver’s insurance company.
As always, speak with an attorney before making any big decisions. Gather up all critical files supporting your claim and be sure to have a lawyer present when arguing your claim in court.
Contact Hutchison & Stoy
Working with another insurance company and an uncooperative at-fault driver can be time-consuming and irritating. If the situation is dire or gets out of hand, seek an attorney or professional help.
Here at Hutchinson and Stoy, we aim to help you fight for your claim. Our personal injury lawyers work to ensure that you are treated fairly in your efforts against the opposing insurance company.
Contact our Fort Worth office today at (817) 820-0100 to get help with your case.