What Should You Do if Someone Hits Your Parked Car?

Last Updated on March 8, 2022

If someone has hit your parked car, you need to take certain steps.

First, contact the police to investigate the incident. Police will create an accident report. Then, notify your insurer to begin the claim. If you have collision coverage or uninsured motorist coverage, your insurer should cover the cost of repairing the damage.

What should you do if someone hits your parked car? How do you make a parked car insurance claim? Keep reading to find out.

The First Steps

What Should You Do if Someone Hits Your Parked Car?

No matter where someone hit your car, take the following steps:

  1. Call the police. A police officer documents the incident and creates an accident report. Your insurer will require this accident report to create a claim.
  2. Take photos, videos, and notes of the incident. Document the damage using your phone. Take photos and videos of all damaged parts of your vehicle. Take notes about the estimated time the accident occurred, the conditions at the time of the accident, and any other relevant information. Look for debris or tire marks around the scene, or any other clues the other vehicle may have left.
  3. Call your insurer. Your insurer will begin the claim, ask for relevant information, and explain the next steps. Your insurer may ask you to upload photos, videos, and the police report through a secure portal, for example. The insurer may recommend certain repair shops in your area. Or, you can visit the repair shop of your choice. The repair shop completes repairs, and your insurer covers all repair costs.

How Insurance Covers Parked Car Accidents

If someone hits your parked car, insurance should cover it if you have collision coverage or uninsured motorist property damage coverage. If you don’t have these two coverages, insurance may not cover the damage.

Here’s how types of insurance cover parked car accidents:

Collision Coverage: If you have collision coverage, then it should cover the cost of repairing or replacing your vehicle after a collision in a parking lot. You pay your deductible (typically $500 to $1,000), and insurance covers all remaining costs of repairing the damage, regardless of who was at fault in the accident. If the other driver fled the scene of the accident, for example, then you can make a claim through your collision coverage. Collision coverage is optional in every state.

Uninsured Motorist Property Damage Coverage: Uninsured motorist property damage coverage covers accidents where the other driver is unknown, including hit-and-run accidents. If another driver damaged your vehicle and fled the scene, then uninsured motorist property damage coverage may cover the incident. Uninsured motorist property damage coverage is optional in every state.

Other Insurance Coverage: If you have basic liability insurance, then you are not covered when someone hits your parked car and leaves the scene. If the other person left their information or remained at the scene, then you could make a claim through the other driver’s insurance company. However, if the other driver fled the scene, or if the other driver is unknown, then insurance will not cover the cost of repairing your vehicle after a collision in a parking lot.

How Hit-and-Run Accidents Work

Many parked car collisions are hit-and-run accidents. Another driver damaged your vehicle when you there not there, then fled the scene.

  • Some drivers leave contact information on a note. Others leave the scene without leaving a note.
  • If the other driver left the scene without leaving contact information, then it’s considered a hit-and-run accident.
  • In a hit-and-run accident, your insurer treats the other driver as an uninsured motorist. You can make a claim through your uninsured motorist coverage, and your insurer will cover the cost of repairing your vehicle to pre-loss condition.
  • If the other driver remained at the scene or left contact information, then your insurer treats it as an ordinary collision where the at-fault driver pays for the other driver’s damages. In this situation, you make a claim through the other driver’s insurance company.
  • If you live in one of 13 no-fault states, you always make a claim through your own insurance company regardless of fault. Even if the other driver hit and damaged your vehicle, you make a claim through your own insurance company.

 Will My Insurance Go Up After a Parked Car Insurance Claim?

If you file a claim through your own insurance company after a parked car collision, then your insurance rates may increase – even though the incident was not your fault.

If you file a collision claim, for example, then your insurer should raise your rates.

However, if you like an uninsured motorist property damage claim, then your insurer may not raise rates. This is similar to any other hit-and-run insurance claim, and your insurer should not punish you.

In some states, insurers raise rates after any claim, regardless of fault.

Y our insurer will tell you if rates will rise after a claim. Contact your insurer if you’re concerned about rising rates after a parked car collision.

Steps to Take After Hitting a Parked Car

If you are at the at-fault driver in a parked car collision, then you should take certain steps. While some drivers flee the scene after colliding with a parked car, you must legally remain at the scene of the accident. Fleeing the scene of an accident is a crime, and you could be charged with a hit-and-run.

Here’s what you need to know after hitting a parked car:

  • Don’t leave the scene. It’s illegal to flee the scene of an accident, and you could be charged with a hit-and-run.
  • Wait to see if the person returns to the car, then exchange insurance information – just like you would do in an ordinary collision.
  • If the other person does not return to their vehicle, or if you need to leave, leave a note. Write your name, contact information, insurance company, and a brief explanation of the accident on the note.
  • Call your insurer and notify them of the accident.
  • The other driver should call your insurance company and begin the claim.
  • If your vehicle is damaged, then you could make a claim through collision coverage. You pay your deductible, and your insurer covers all other damage to your vehicle.

Final Word – Somebody Hit Your Parked Car

If someone hits your parked car, then insurance may or may not cover the damages.

If you have collision coverage and uninsured motorist property damage coverage, then insurance should cover the cost of repairing or replacing your vehicle after the incident.

Contact your insurer to initiate your claim for a parked car collision today.

James Shaffer
James Shaffer James Shaffer is a writer for InsurancePanda.com and a well-seasoned auto insurance industry veteran. He has a deep knowledge of insurance rules and regulations and is passionate about helping drivers save money on auto insurance. He is responsible for researching and writing about anything auto insurance-related. He holds a bachelor's degree from Bentley University and his work has been quoted by NBC News, CNN, and The Washington Post.
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