Will hitting a parked car increase your car insurance rates?

Hitting a parked car will increase your car insurance rates. Fortunately, many auto insurance companies offer single accident forgiveness where policyholders are not penalized for a single accident or claim. However, not all carriers offer this and you may see your rates increase after hitting a parked car. Keep your rates as low as possible by comparison shopping online for free insurance quotes. Enter your ZIP code below to get started.

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UPDATED: Oct 27, 2020

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Written By: Tonya SislerReviewed By: Brad LarsenUPDATED: Oct 27, 2020Fact Checked

Hitting a parked car may sound like a hard thing to do but in reality parked cars get hit quite often. From parking lot accidents to vehicles simply parked in the wrong sport at the wrong time no vehicle can always escape the possibility of getting hit even when parked.

Will your car insurance cover you for hitting a parked car?

This all depends on the type of insurance you have, who your provider is and where the accident occurred. Every state has different car insurance laws and some providers offer single accident forgiveness while others do not. Most parked car accidents end up without injury however if you do cause personal injury then you better have proper insurance in place since many owners are not very happy having a parked car hit.

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What is Single Accident Forgiveness?

Many car insurance companies offer single accident forgiveness where policyholders are not penalized from a single accident or claim. However not all carriers offer this and there is always a time frame that goes along with determining whether or not you qualify. For many insurance providers a single accident waiver applies only for the first accident after a three (3) year good driving record while others its five (5) years or more.

The single accident forgiveness element of your car insurance policy is very important to understand and if you don’t have one in your policy it may be a good idea to start comparing car insurance quotes and find a provider who offers this. Car accidents can happen to anyone anytime and having a shield against higher premiums for a single accident is a very valuable asset to have. Of course, if you habitually get in accidents then it’s probably a better idea to compare driving schools.

How soon will my car insurance rates increase after hitting a parked car?

If you are involved in a car accident and do not have or not eligible for an accident forgiveness waiver then it’s just a matter of time until your car insurance rates increase. However this may be a few years away or as soon as your next policy renewal date. It all depends on how often your car insurance company reviews your risk profile and if any public records are updated. Many times drivers will not see an increase for a year or more whereas some drivers get notice of higher premiums with the next renewal notice.

This is a really hard question to answer as it varies not only between car insurance companies but even policyholders within the same car insurance company can often experience different wait times for higher premiums.

Will my car insurance go up if someone hits my parked car?

Its very possible especially if the driver has no insurance or you are the victim of a hit and run accident. If either is the case you need to file a claim under your uninsured motorist coverage and anytime you file a claim your car insurance rates can possibly increase.

Many parking lot accidents are settled between owners without notifying an insurance company as the damage is often minor and sometime even less than the insurance deductible however you do want to check with your state laws about when you are required to file a police report as leaving the scene of an accident is never a good thing. All states have different laws which define exactly when you need to call police to the scene and you should be aware of these laws long before leaving home.

What information should I exchange if somebody hits my parked car?

Anytime a car accident occurs it’s important to get personal information from the other driver such as their driver’s license number and insurance ID card but you also want to make note of a few other things as stories often change as soon the drivers leave the scene. Always take note of at least the following items:

  • Vehicle License Plate (may be different than the insurance ID card)
  • Names of ALL people in both vehicles (regardless of injury)
  • Exact location of where you parked
  • Direction of travel for the car that hit you
  • Time of Day

Although most car insurance companies handle claim processing fairly quickly if there is a chance a car insurance company doesn’t have to pay you will need this information to prove fault to the insurance adjusters. It’s very common to forget or alter accident facts by mistake and by writing down the facts you have a physical record of what happened.

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Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about car insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything car insurance-related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by car insurance experts.

Tonya Sisler has a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of South Carolina in Journalism and has worked for 15+ years in management. She has also completed a proofreading certification and is currently a professional writer.

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Written by Tonya Sisler
Insurance Writer Tonya Sisler

Brad Larson has been in the insurance industry for more than a dozen years. He started out as a claims adjuster for a national carrier. He has since switched to the agency side of the business. Brad is licensed in all P&C lines.

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Reviewed by Brad Larsen
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent Brad Larsen

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