Third Party Car Insurance Claims

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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: Jul 16, 2021

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If you have been in a car accident with another driver, then you may find yourself having to file a third party car insurance claim.  Before you take any action after a car accident, you should understand the difference between first and third party car insurance claims, and decide which path will benefit you most. If you have any questions specific to your insurance claim, you can consult with an attorney.

First Party Accident Claims – Filing Under Your Insurance Policy

If you file a first party car accident claim, you will work with your insurance company throughout the car insurance claim process.  First party insurance claims are filed under your insurance policy, so make sure you are familiar with its terms and limitations before taking action.  First party insurance claims after an accident are common in two car accidents if:

  • You are at fault for the accident
  • The other driver’s insurance does not cover the full costs of your injuries
  • The other driver does not have insurance or cannot be located should the accident be a hit and run

First party claims for medical expenses are paid under the Medical Payment coverage or Personal Injury coverage of the policy, and the two are usually limited both by the type of expense covered and the value of the payout.  If you have suffered a serious injury at the fault of another driver, a first party claim might not be right for your needs.  In those cases, consider contacting a car accident attorney in order get the money you need to recover. 

Third Party Accident Claims – Filing Under the Other Driver’s Insurance Party

A third party car accident claim is one filed against the insurance policy of another driver who is at fault for the damages you suffered in the crash.  Unlike first party accident claims under your policy, a third party accident claim is covered by the Liability portion of an insurance contract – meaning the type of damages you can claim are not limited to basic medical expenses, and can include pain and suffering damages or lost wages.  Additionally, Liability sections of insurance policy have higher payout limits, and can cover more of the damages.

While third party car accident claims may allow you to recover more damages, they are usually more complicated than a first party claim.  A car accident claims attorney can be a valuable asset to getting the full value of your claim.  Car accident attorneys offer free, no obligation, consultations, and can give you the assistance you need to recover the insurance payout you deserve whether you make a first or a third party claim.

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