When most of us think of a car accident we think of two cars crashing on public roads, potentially causing damage to the vehicle(s) and/or injury to the driver(s). These accidents are typically handled by the individual person’s car insurance, which will pay for medical costs, property replacement, and car repairs necessary dependent upon the coverage and needs. While this all seems straightforward, there are often times situations where a solution is not so obvious.
What happens when the accident involves someone’s private property? For example, your home is damaged by a person driving their car into it or a fence is damaged by another person’s car? There are also instances where a person runs into a parked car in your driveway or even in your garage. What do you do about situations like this?
Here are a list of questions with responses that should help answer some of the most common questions related to private property accidents.
Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Damages When a Car Hits Your Home?
Yes. The reason you have homeowner’s insurance is to pay for any kind of accident that can occur related to your home. This includes someone running into your home with their car.
A person’s homeowner’s insurance policies will provide for damages to be repaired, not only to the home itself but any personal property that may have been damaged as part of the accident. It may then become necessary for either your insurance company or for you individually to seek additional litigation depending upon how much damage was caused and how much coverage your insurance policy provided.
Those who own businesses should be aware that your business insurance or property insurance related to your business would also cover such accidents.
What Happens If a Person Hits a Car Parked in My Driveway?
This situation falls in a rather murky area because the question is: should your car insurance company pay for this damage or does the homeowner’s insurance pay for it because it occurred on your property?
The primary provider of coverage in this case would be your car insurance company. All accidents involving a motor vehicle, even on your driveway or in your garage, will be covered by your car insurance.
However, you may find that the damage to your car exceeds what the coverage of your automobile insurance policy provides. In this case, you may be able to seek additional compensation through the insurance policy on your home.
You may also find that you are filing two claims for the same accident. Should a person run through your garage door with their car, damaging both the garage and your vehicle, you may have to file a claim for your vehicle with your car insurance company and also file one with your homeowner’s policy to cover damages related to the garage door and any other structural issues. This could very well mean that you are paying two deductibles for the same accident, even if they weren’t your fault.
Why Does My Homeowners Insurance Have to Pay for Damages Caused by Someone Else?
If you have ever been involved in a situation like this you understand how this is one of the most frustrating circumstances. The homeowner winds up having to pay a deductible and have their insurance company involved in the claim when someone else is responsible for the damage that has been caused to their personal property. To be honest, it is the same kind of frustration people have when another person hits them with their car.
Most states, including Arizona, provide for the insurance company of each individual to become primary in processing any kind of claim. What that means is that you first contact your insurance company. This way any kind of damage that has occurred, including personal injury, can be taken care of right away.
This is important because state governments have understood that an attempt to get the insurance company of the other person involved in the accident to pay for your medical bills or property damage can be a lengthy process. Therefore, your insurance company becomes primary in handling these kinds of claims at first. That way, your needs can be taken care of immediately, while waiting to seek additional compensation from the insurance company of the person who caused the accident.
If There Has Been an Accident on Your Property, Get Legal Help
If you are involved in an accident you may find that you are in need of assistance to help resolve any claims involved. This is why it pays to seek the assistance of an attorney to help you with matters such as this.
Consider that even if your insurance company provides for full compensation in these kinds of accidents, that does not mean that they have your best interests at heart. These are companies that are looking to save themselves as much money as possible and often times that can mean that they will settle with you for an amount that is far less than what you deserve.
Call our Personal Injury team at (480) 467-4392 to discuss your case today.