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Minor at-fault accident | Questions

by Jake

I own my car free and clear (2000 Nissan Altima). Yesterday, I rear-ended someone at a stop sign at about 5 mph. His vehicle's bumper sustained very minor damage -- a dent roughly 2 inches in diameter.

The front of my car's hood is bent down (unopenable) and is slightly bowed in the middle. I gave him my insurance info, and he reported it.

My claim is now in the process of figuring out the "repair details." I've yet to hear from my claims rep.

My question: Is it in my best interest to report the damage to my own vehicle? Even if it's above the deductible, I don't really care to fix it -- I believe I can "manually" fix the hood enough to make it openable again.

How should I proceed?



Hello Jake,

Well, it depends. Are they going to pay your damages and there is no way that you are at fault? If this is the case, reporting the claim can raise your premium.

If however, you are being accused of something or the insurance company is dragging their feet to pay you, then you might want to have the coverage of your own insurance company.

They will make sure they pay you.

Sounds like you are in a situation were the damage is minimal and the other insurance company will pay you, and liability is clear. If this is the case, it is a good idea to simply deal with the insurance company of the person that hit you. If they give you the run around, file with your own carrier.

For a longer discussion on when you should and should not file, visit:

Good Luck,

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