how much time do i have after i the accident to report THE ACCIDENT to my insurance

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Jan 27, 2011

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Insurance Question from American Canyon, CA

Asked on 01/27/2011

how much time do i have after i the accident to report THE ACCIDENT to my insurance some one hit my door in a parking lot 24 hrs ago we are trying no negociate this with out involving our insurance companies. just in case that the other party does't pay me can I still make the report?

Answer given on January 28, 2011

the insurance companies policies generally say as soon as possible.  However, one to two weeks, should not be a problem.  If you are successful in working it out with the other party, then the delay is not an issue. 

If you feel the other party is delaying a settlement, you can always report to your insurance company and if the other party pays for the damages, you can withdraw your claim.  Since you were not at fault, there is no problem and there would be no charge to you by your insurance company.  However, be aware that if you company does pay for the damages, they will pay the damages less your deductible.  Then, if they are successful in getting restitution from the other party or their insurance company, you would be reimbursed your deductible.

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