Accident - Handling Without Insurance Involvment, Need Advice

Updated on January 27, 2011
A.L. asks from Spring, TX
25 answers

Hi Mom's. I was rear ended this morning on the freeway. We pulled over and I flagged down a police officer (just incase as she originally tried to drive away...she "said" she was not sure if she actually hit me or not - lol) Anyway, I decided to not make a report...I did not want it to hit my insurance since I was not at fault and really was not wanting her to get a ticket either as she has offered to pay all of my damages. I asked the officer what I do if she does not pay, he gave me his business card and told me to call him if there are any issues and we can proceed from there if she does something like that. Anyway, my question is... do I also ask her to pay for my car rental while my car is in the shop? I am a sinlge mom so this is my only form of transportation. My fiance would let me use his truck but I work far so really don't want to drive his truck with gas prices. Any thoughts? I'm aggrivated because of the inconvenience but accidents do happen. I have just never done anything without insurance before.

Thank you!

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So What Happened?

Thank you all so very much for your advice. I went and got the estimate on my car....$711.00!!! Needless to say, the girl contacted her insurance company. They have been great to deal with, she admitted fault and I am going to get my car fixed. I feel much better about this. I will never "try" to do a cash type deal on an accident again. NEVER! : )

More Answers


answers from Los Angeles on

It should not affect your insurance at all... if it does you need to change insurance companies. If you're not at fault they cover it no problem, the other party's insurance pays, nothing comes out of yours.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

Because of the type of damage on cars that can be unseen these days....make the police report. Because people lie about their ability to pay....make a police report. Because she may turn around and sue you...make a police report. Go soley through her insurance company as just because she has a card doesn't mean she didn't get a cancel letter yesterday and then hit you, this way the officer would never know. It is not your fault that she wasn't paying attention, it isn't your problem if she gets one more ticket her license will be taken away. Help all of us and have the police report done because if she would get her license taken away perhaps she shouldn't be on the road and it will make them safer for all. I don't trust most at their word unless I have known them awhile and they have proven themselves to be true to their word.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Austin on

Let my experience be a lesson to you. . .

Many years ago, I was side-swiped by a young kid. He gave me his insurance card, gave me his driver's license number, and I noted the make and color of the car, along with the tag number. It was not a major accident, and we didn't file a police report.

When I called his insurance company, I was told that the policy was not in effect, and had been cancelled a few months prior. I called the police to file a report and filed with -my- insurance (my coverage included uninsured motorists). I never got dinged on my insurance, since it wasn't -my- fault. The police followed up, and it turned out it wasn't a Driver's License, but a learner's permit number that he gave me.

SO, my insurance company paid to have it fixed, and the officer saw to it that his permit/license were suspended until the insurance claim was repaid.

ESPECIALLY since she originally tried to drive away, I have a sneaking suspicion that you'll never hear from this lady again, and will be calling on the officer you spoke with.

Best wishes and luck -

1 mom found this helpful


answers from San Antonio on

You should always file a police report. She may be all apologies right now, but when she sees how much the bill will be, she's going to push back. In addition, your insurance wouldn't budge if she hit you from behind.

With that being said, she needs to make you whole and you need to try to mitigate your damages. This means you need to several estimates from places you wouldn't mind having fix your vehicle. Present these to her and ask her which place she wants you to take your vehicle to. (She'll probably choose the lowest priced one.) At that time, inform her that you're going to have to get a rental vehicle because yours will be taken from you to be fixed and you have to get to work. When everything is said and done and you have your vehicle back, you give her copies of all of the receipts. If she refuses to pay for the rental then you'll need to take her to small claims court.

Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Norfolk on

Not going with a police report was a big mistake. It would have documented everything and be nice to have if you have to take her to small claims court.
Since she was at fault - the claim should have gone through her insurance, not yours. She could very well stiff you with the bill and small claims court will be your only recourse.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Jacksonville on

Unless the woman has plenty of $ to spend, I would contact her insurance company and let them handle it. Yes, she should pay for your rental during the time your car is being repaired (it may take a week before the shop gets any necessary parts in and you won't be without your vehicle during this time, but once they DO have your vehicle, if any painting is involved, it will be at least 24 hours that they'll need to keep your car). Sometimes, after they begin the repair work, they find something else that was hidden and if they have to order additional parts it could take a day or two. Also, insurance companies, get a discounted rate for rentals... call and see what I mean... if it is being handled thru an insurer, the rate is probably around $30/day... if it is just being rented by you, it will be about $55/day for the EXACT Same Car.
She will probably end up being more satisfied with her insurer picking up the tab and dealing with the details. Just be careful... do you have to get her approval regarding repairs before she will pay for them? Did she say how much she is willing to pay without involving her insurer? Even a bumper bump can quickly exceed $500, even without throwing in a rental car.
And it won't affect YOUR insurance rates at all... it might affect hers, which is why she probably wants to handle it on her own.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chattanooga on

I just want to point out how often 'being nice' blows up in the 'nice' person's face... make sure you are covered...(If she's at fault, it won't affect your insurance. Our truck was completely totaled, and there was no difference in our insurance since we weren't at fault...)

BUT... Yes. She should have to pay for your rental... after all, that's an expense you WOULDN'T have normally had to pay. It's a direct result of her hitting you.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

I would go through your insurance. This 'insures' everything goes the way it should. Last year, I was rear-ended and the person wanted me to use a shop that was owned by her friend several cities away. I did go there and have them give me an estimate but the more I thought about it, the more I realized that I was better off having their insurance involved. I ended up using a shop in town. Why in the world should I be more inconvenience? I never did call my insurance. Her insurance took care of everything including purchasing me a new car seat for my baby and the rental car charges.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Kansas City on

Go through insurance. As it was not your fault, your insurance rates will not suffer. Let your insurance deal with her insurance. PERIOD! If not, something could happen to your electrical boards, or worse, and you would have a horrible time trying to get her money then. She could also try to sue you later.

Case in point: my husband got a call from an attorney whose client wanted to sue us ONE YEAR after the fact (and he had nothing at all to do with the accident!). He was there, she decided he should have not left the intersection open during a red light, she was speeding and hit a car that coincidently tried to turn out of the intersection my husband left open (there was a sign that said do not block intersection) so she decided it was his fault that the lady tried to turn and got hit!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dover on

Should have made the report and turned it in to her insurance. Then if you had problems, your insurance company could "duke it out" with hers.

As is, yes she should pay for the rental but it is going to cost more than it would have through the insurance company. You will have a mess on your hands.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from College Station on

First- I hope you are okay.
Second- you need to inform your insurance company. For multiple reasons. They are not going to count it against you since you were not at fault, but they can help you get restitution for the wreck. Also, if you have another wreck and have not informed your insurance company of THIS one, they may chose to not cover the next one. (I was rear-ended twice in 2 months!)

Yes, she should cover a rental car. HER insurance should do that. You should not be out anything in any way.

Hope this helps.



answers from San Antonio on

Always make a police report when you get in an accident and it is NOT your fault. ALWAYS.
That report is your protection and helps YOUR insurance company go after her for damages. Your insurance company is paid to do a lot of work for you. Now you will have the chasing and payment issues to deal with on your own....that is very inconvenient.

And if an accident is your fault, it is the right thing to do, anyway.

Hopefully you weren't hurt. And hope this all works out.



answers from New York on

Get all your papers for repair costs and car rental in order and give it to her. As long as no police report was filed your insurance company has no way of knowing anything happened but if a police report was filed your insurer will know in time.

Get a few quotes regarding the repairs but you won't get the discount rate on the auto rental that you would get through your insurance company. It may be more cost effective to use your fiance's truck than rent a car under these circumstances. Just some food for thought. I hope this helps.



answers from Austin on

Yes, I got burned before by not filing a police report either, never again! The cop that came to the scene actually talked me out of filing one saying that it would go against my insurance as an accident regardless of who's fault it was and it was best I didn't-he was just being lazy I assume and did not feel like doing the report!! To top it off the guy that hit me showed his insurance card to the cop and it said it did not expire until June and it was currently March and when I called to report to his insurance they said he had stopped paying and it was no longer valid, ugh, what a mess that was. Good luck to you.



answers from Detroit on

You need to protect yourself and make a report! Even if it is not a "claim" to the insurance companies, there needs to be a legal record of what happened, what the officer saw, what was said, etc (before memories forget)... A month from now you could get served with lawsuit papers claiming you hit her and she has medical issues because of it... Protect yourself from a your word against hers and the officer doesn't remember specifics situation.
Call her and just explain that you NEED to make a report, BUT can still deal with costs off insurance... And yes, anything that your insurance WOULD cover is supposed to come out of her pocket. (IMO only reason for someone to not want to make a claim is if they have a history of accidents or are hiding something...) Its why you pay for your insurance!



answers from Waco on

ALWAYS file a police report! Let me see if I understand this... she tried to drive away and said she wasn't sure if she hit you, then she said she would pay for all of the damages???? My guess is you are going to be completely out of luck getting her to pay for anything. If you get lucky and get her to pay for the damages, her insurance should cover your rental car (if she even has insurance). You also need to let your insurance know so that when she does try to say that she didn't do anything to cause the accident, they can have their subrogation team go after her insurance company. Without a police report, however, it is going to be difficult to prove who was in the wrong.



answers from La Crosse on

Many auto body shops will give you a free loaner while they fix yours, if you ask and explain your situation. I have had 3 accidenta last year (luckily none of them my fault) and three different places gave me a free rental. Just ask when you get the estimate.

PS: Being nice has never bit me yet...I have allowed people not to report an accident, and vice versa, and it all worked out just fine.



answers from New York on

When this happened to me, I had the places I got estimates from include a car rental in there. Yes, I would most definitely charge her for rental - you do not owe her any favors and deserve to have a car to drive just as you did before you "met" her.

Contrary to some of the other posts, please know that it CAN affect your insurance even if it wasn't your fault. Many insurance companies only care that you were involved in something (they still have to deal with claims and this is at the very least causing them administrative costs). So if you are involved in many L. accidents, all of which are not your fault, your insurance could go up (not saying that it will, just that it might).

Best of luck to you.



answers from Oklahoma City on

This will come back to bite you in the hiney. Looks like it may already be doing that. File a report, the officer should have filed a report anyway, it is her fault for rear ending you and she may not even have valid insurance and you'll be in hot water with your insurance over it. Check with your insurance about the rantal car, her insurance may not even have that as a benefit if she has just basic libility.



answers from Detroit on

I still would have filed a police report to have just in case cause you never kknow. Filing a police report won't be sent to insurance unless a claim is filed. If she has offered to pay for the damages then she should pay for the car rental as well. Do you have car rental on your auto policy? If so then yes make her pay. I'm from Michigan and here the accident only impacts you if your at fault. Not sure how Texas works but it may have been easier to just let your insurance company handle it.



answers from Little Rock on

i wont EVER let someone off like that, you need to take all the legal percautions, i've known ppl who promised FRIENDS the right of words and never followed through and because it wasn't filed ON SITE there was nothing law could do

yes she needs to pay for your car rentals, and speaking from experience, i've never seen or heard of any circumstance where it hit the victims insurance....if it's their fault it's soley on THEIR insurance.

good luck



answers from Houston on

If she does pay, good, but if not there is nothing you can do about it without a police report! She can say she never caused any damage to your car and you can't do anything now.

In the future, always make a also never know how serious the damage can be---a minor rear end can cause unseen damage that will be expensive! And even though you feel fine, the next morning you may be sore or achy from the hit.

Hoprefully it works out okay, but you really can't trust a stranger to come back and pay!!



answers from Topeka on

You were rear ended more than likely she is at fault a police report should of been made it wouldn't of effected your insurance plus your rental car would of been taken care of


answers from Dallas on

I handle auto insurance and claims all day, so I know what I'm talking about.

Police report is irrelevant. They usually wont even make a report unless someone was injured, both cars were towed away, or a crime was committed. If you were reaended It's not your fault, it will not go on your insurance. Your insurance wont even know about it unless you call to tell them. I really hope you got her insurance information. That's the sinlge most important thing to do in an accident! Go through her insurance company. It never works out when you try to work it our between you. GO through her insurance company. It wont cost you or her anything. They will gurantee the work and you will get a rental car. The only consequence is her rates will go up. She will have to pay her deductible to fix her own car.



answers from Austin on

You can always ask. The worst she can do is say no. In the future, just fill out the police report. My insurance premium didn't go up after my last accident. I think your insurance company can give you the option to file a claim or not with them. They can tell you if your rates will go up. I would think they would be happy to NOT fill out a claim if you choose to handle it on your own. Good thing you have the police officer's business card in case it all goes badly.

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