What happens if you don’t report an accident to insurance?

Suppose you are fortunate enough to escape without apparent serious injuries or damage to your car. In that case, you and the other party may be tempted to agree to deal with the costs without involving insurance companies. But what happens if you don’t report an accident to insurance? Do you save yourself from increased rates, or could that decision cost you more money?

Reach out and get advice from a Chicago car accident lawyer with Horwitz, Horwitz & Associates. And if you did “choose wrong” and are now facing financial or legal consequences, our team will work to navigate you through the fallout and protect your interests.

what happens if you don't report an accident to insurance

What are you supposed to report to your insurance company?

After an accident causing injuries or damage, you should give your insurance company “notice” through a phone call or an online process. Typically, information in this notice includes:

  • The time and date of the accident
  • Whether there are apparent injuries
  • If any vehicles sustained damage
  • Contact information of others involved in the accident (drivers, passengers, or pedestrians, for example)
  • Insurance information for other involved parties
  • Contact information for the responding law enforcement agency

Parties should notify their respective companies if they need to make a claim on their policies or if any involved party makes a third-party claim against another party’s insurance.

What if I fail to notify my insurance company?

If you do not provide notice–perhaps you and the others agreed not to–and circumstances change, you could find yourself in steep financial trouble.

Let’s say you and the other party were equally at fault for the accident. Still, you realize days after you should have reported the incident that your car has sustained more severe damage than you initially suspected. You try to file a claim through your mandatory policy but are denied. Your insurance company may tell you that no notice was given within the required timeframe and that you are now on the hook for paying for your car repairs.

The situation becomes even more severe if you discover injuries. The effects of some injuries may take a few hours or a day or so to appear. If you didn’t report, you may be unable to use your liability coverage.

Even worse, the other party may not agree and file a third-party claim against you. If you never gave notice, your company may deny responsibility, and you could be held personally liable for paying that other compensation.

Can my insurance company drop me for failure to notify?

Though every policy is different, they can. Sometimes, those conditions are often included in the fine print, but even so, they count.

Can a car accident attorney help me?

A Chicago car accident lawyer from Horwitz, Horwitz & Associates can review your case and help you find the best course of action. Your attorney will review the circumstances of your accident and your insurance policy to determine your options and will work to serve your interests.

Remember, even though you bought your policy for protection, insurance companies are out to protect their bottom line, not yours. Partner with an attorney to ensure your insurance company does not issue an unfair decision denying your claim.

Contact an experienced car accident attorney in Chicago

Experiencing a car accident is hard, especially if you face insurance complications. Contact Horwitz, Horwitz & Associates for a free consultation to make things easier. Call (800) 985-1819 or send a message to speak with an experienced Chicago car accident attorney today.