How Long After A Car Accident Can You File a Claim? | Policygenius

A car accident, even a child one, can be a chilling experience. There ’ south besides a lot to take concern of afterwards — dealing with any injuries, assessing damages, trying to process what happened. You might be tempted to delay filing a claim with your car insurance supplier, or you may want to wait to see the fully extent of any wrong or medical issues. But just how long can you actually wait to file ? Whether you ’ rhenium filing a claim with your own car policy company or you ’ re filing what ’ s called a third-party claim with the at-fault driver ’ s insurance, you should try to file as soon after an accident as is sanely possible, but you do have some time. Check your specific policy. Your insurance company likely requires you to report accidents soon after they happen, frequently within 30 days. And then when it comes to filing claims ( which is different from reporting an accident ) your supplier might not give a time terminus ad quem, or it might set specific limits for types of coverage. Some insurers, for example, might give you three years to file claims for bodily injury. ready to shop car insurance ?

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How much time does the insurance company give you ?

Auto policy policies much stipulate that you should report accidents “ promptly, ” which is undefined but basically means you should report an accident angstrom soon as you can, sometimes even while you ’ re still at the scene. To find out how long your specific insurance actually gives you to report, check your policy or contact your provider directly. Your insurance company might require you to notify the police within a certain come of clock, often 24 hours, after an accident. Your insurance company may even have a mobile app that helps you document the accident and prepare to file a claim either with them and with the early party ’ sulfur insurance company. But don ’ thyroxine worry if they don ’ t have a way to do it well online, you should still call your provider and report an accident right away so you can get the process started. then, after you ’ ve reported an accident to your insurance company, you ’ ll have some time to file resulting claims. many major insurers stipulate that you have a long as two or three years to file a claim under sealed types of coverage. Again, check your policy or check with your provider to find out how retentive you have to file any claims after an accident. however, bear in mind that after you ’ ve filed a claim, your supplier might give you a a lot shorter deadline, sometimes 30 days, by which you have to submit all documents related to that call .

What do you need to do before filing an indemnity title ?

There are certain steps you decidedly need to take when reporting an accident and preparing to file a claim :

1. Call 911 .

That will help make indisputable anyone involved is safe and getting any necessary medical care. If you call the police to the fit, they ’ ll document the accident in a police report, which is much necessary for filing a claim. Insurers much require that you report the accident to the police within 24 hours .

2. Collect all the compulsory documentation .

Your policy supplier might have a checklist available that will take you through all the specific information you ’ ll necessitate, but make certain to take down the names, addresses, phone numbers and policy policy data of everyone involved. You should besides take photos and record details of the accident, like rate of events, location and weather. You can even diagram the scene of the accident .

3. Contact your car indemnity provider .

As we mentioned earlier, your insurance company might have an app to streamline this measure, but if they don ’ t ( or if you prefer earphone calls ) you should call your provider. even if you believe you weren ’ t at defect in the accident and plan on filing a third-party call with the other person ’ south policy, you should notify your own supplier .

4. Contact your claims adjuster .

now you ’ ve reported the accident “ promptly, ” and you ’ ve laid the necessity groundwork to file any claims. Your provider will assign you a claims adjuster who will help take you through the process arsenic well as investigate your accident and any follow-up to it, including repairs and checkup manage .

5. Keep copies of everything .

A good lean to remember as you go through the claims serve is to keep copies of everything. Whether you ’ re filing a claim in the hours, days, or weeks after an accident, you ’ ll motivation to quickly show all the relevant documents, like bills or medical records. ready to shop cable car policy ?

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What if you file a claim excessively late ?

If you have car damage that shows up months after an accident, or injuries that become clear over time, it ’ s still possible to file a claim — but keep in mind that the claims adjuster will take a close up front at it to make certain the damage or injury you ’ ra coverage actually came from the accident in doubt and didn ’ thymine happen late. The late you file a claim, the more probable it is that a provider will deny it, but a hanker as you ’ re within your policy ’ s timeline for file ( if there is one ) and you ’ ve previously reported the accident, it ’ s still possible that your call will be approved. If you ’ re filing after a specific come of meter your provider has given to file claims, well, they nobelium longer have the lapp debt instrument to you .

When not to file an car policy call

Your drive record has a direct feign on your car insurance rates. Each year of dependable drive can lower your rates, and conversely, accidents and violations can cause your rates to go up. If you get into an accident, your cable car policy company may see you as a higher risk and may raise your premium when it ’ second meter to renew your policy. But you don ’ thyroxine always have to file a claim, particularly if the wrong would cost less to fix than the deductible. You may besides want to skip out on filing a claim if you were the entirely person involved. Say you incidentally crash into a fire hydrant, denting the bumper of your car. If the cost to repair your bumper is less than your deductible ( which is normally $ 500 or $ 1,000 ), then you would have to pay for the monetary value out of air pocket anyhow, so you can skip on filing a call. If you get into an accident with person else, then you should decidedly file a claim to cover the place damage and bodily injury you cause. You could besides file a third-party claim with the other party ‘s indemnity to be payed out for any bodily injuries or property damage you sustain .

Something else to keep in mind is that your express has laws called a legislative act of limitations that determine how long you have to file a lawsuit following personal injury or property damage. That technically guarantees you a certain amount of time to pursue legal military action following a car accident. This windowpane can be anywhere from 1 to 10 years long, depending on your state and the type of damages, so, if you want to leave open the hypothesis of suing another party after an accident, make sure you take action before your express ’ s codified of limitations expires .

State codified of limitations for bodily wound and property damage lawsuits

Every state has different rules about how long after an accident you can file a lawsuit for property damage or personal injury. Below are the statutes of limitations for lawsuits in each state :

state Bodily Injury property damage
Alabama 2 years 2 years
Alaska 2 years 2 years
Arizona 2 years 2 years
Arkansas 3 years 3 years
California 2 years 3 years
Colorado 2 years 2 years
Connecticut 2 years 2 years
Delaware 2 years 2 years
District of Columbia 3 years 3 years
Florida 4 years 4 years
Georgia 2 years 4 years
Hawaii 2 years 2 years
Idaho 2 years 3 years
Illinois 2 years 5 years
Indiana 2 years 2 years
Iowa 2 years 5 years
Kansas 2 years 2 years
Kentucky 1 year 2 years
Louisiana 1 year 1 year
Maine 6 years 6 years
Maryland 3 years 3 years
Massachusetts 3 years 3 years
Michigan 3 years 3 years
Minnesota 2-6 years 6 years
Mississippi 3 years 3 years
Missouri 5 years 5 years
Montana 3 years 2 years
Nebraska 4 years 4 years
Nevada 2 years 3 years
New Hampshire 3 years 3 years
New Jersey 2 years 6 years
New Mexico 3 years 4 years
New York 3 years 3 years
North Carolina 3 years 3 years
North Dakota 6 years 6 years
Ohio 2 years 2 years
Oklahoma 2 years 2 years
Oregon 2 years 6 years
Pennsylvania 2 years 2 years
Rhode Island 3 years 10 years
South Carolina 3 years 3 years
South Dakota 3 years 6 years
Tennessee 1 year 3 years
Texas 2 years 2 years
Utah 4 years 3 years
Vermont 3 years 3 years
Virginia 2 years 5 years
Washington 2-3 years 2-3 years
West Virginia 2 years 2 years
Wisconsin 3 years 3-6 years
Wyoming 4 years 4 years

Frequently Asked Questions

How long after an accident can you file a lawsuit?

Each state has different rules about how long after an accident you can file a lawsuit. Most states typically give drivers 1 to 10 years to file a lawsuit, but the time inning varies depending on the type of damage. For exemplar, in Virgina, drivers have two years to file a lawsuit for bodily injury and five years to file a property damage lawsuit.

How long after a car accident can you go to the hospital?

You should go to the hospital immediately if you ’ ve been injured in an accident, but if your injuries are less apparent, you can wait up to two weeks and inactive be eligible for insurance reimbursement .

If I go to the hospital after a car accident, who pays?

If you get in an accident in a no-fault state, your indemnity would cover the costs of your own medical expenses, regardless of who caused the accident. But if you don ’ metric ton live in one of the 12 no-fault states, you should file a third-party title directly with the at-fault driver ‘s policy company and their liability coverage will pay out to cover the costs of your injuries .

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