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Why You Need to Report That Accident


If you have recently suffered a car accident, the last thing you probably want to do is report it to the company where you are trying to purchase auto insurance. Many people fail to disclose accidents to their insurance company, because they know they will either be denied coverage or charged a higher premium. As tempting as it may be, it is always important to disclose this type of information to your prospective insurer. First of all, most insurance companies will eventually discover the truth, whether or not you disclose it. If they find out you have hidden the truth about a car accident, they will most likely be refused insurance coverage. If you honestly forgot to mention an important detail regarding an accident, be sure to inform your insurance company right away.


What You Need to Report


If you are shopping around for auto insurance, you need to inform any prospective companies of various pieces of information. These include any accidents in which you were involved, regardless of who was at fault. You also need to disclose any past claims that you have made to other insurance companies, if applicable. Any driving record infractions must also be reported.


Why People Fail to Report Previous Claims


Research indicates that 20 percent of individuals who have purchased a personal or commercial insurance policy fail to disclose information regarding previous accidents. To be fair, some omissions are not intentional. However, the majority of applicants hide this information because they don’t believe their insurance company will take the time to actually substantiate their records. Some people honestly forget to disclose minor accidents, and sometimes the insurance company itself will fail to record the relevant information. Your insurance agent may forget to inquire about your prior accident history, so you may not understand that you have to disclose this information.


What Happens If You Fail to Report Past Claims


You can suffer serious consequences if you fail to report any past claims. You may try to hide this kind of information to you won’t be refused coverage or charged a higher premium. However, you’ll end up in much worse trouble if your insurance company ever finds out about any prior accidents in which you have been involved. Applicants are asked to disclose information regarding prior claims or accidents, and insurance companies actually verify the information you provide. They will often refuse you auto insurance if they discover that you have intentionally concealed relevant information.


Failing to report this type of information also has moral consequences by affecting other drivers. Drivers who have submitted at-fault claims are charged higher rates, whereas people who have withheld this information end up paying much less. This is obviously not a fair scenario, and is yet another reason why it’s essential to report any accidents or previous claims.


Reporting an Honest Omission


You may later remember about a minor accident or claim that you forgot to include when you applied for your current auto insurance policy. You may also not have realized that you were obligated to report this type of information when you were purchasing auto insurance. In either case, be sure to contact your auto insurance agent immediately and inform him or her about the omission. This is always a safer option than hoping your insurance company won’t find out about the error. If you report the information at a later date, most companies will merely adjust your premium according to the new information you submit. You won’t jeopardize the positive relationship between you and your auto insurer. On the other hand, if you fail to disclose any omissions regarding prior claims or accidents, you may end up being denied auto insurance altogether.


 











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