If you collide with another vehicle from in front or behind, then you might have bumper damage.
Does car insurance cover bumper damage? Or are you required to pay for bumper damage out of pocket? Today, we’re explaining everything you need to know about bumper damage and car insurance.
Yes, Car Insurance Covers Most Bumper Damage
Bumper damage is covered by car insurance no differently than any other type of damage.
If the bumper damage occurred during a covered incident, then your car insurance should cover bumper damage.
If another car rammed into your rear bumper at an intersection, for example, then the other driver’s liability coverage should cover the cost of repairing your bumper (assuming the other driver is 100% at fault for the accident).
Or, if you rammed another car at an intersection and your front bumper is damaged, then your damage repairs should be covered under your collision coverage. Meanwhile, the driver you hit can make a claim to repair his bumper through your liability coverage.
If your bumper was damaged from some other event – like a tree branch falling on your car and damaging your bumper – then you may be able to make a claim under your policy’s comprehensive coverage.
Or, if your car’s bumper is damaged during a hit-and-run in a parking lot, then you may be able to make a claim under your uninsured driver insurance. This insurance covers situations where the other driver is unknown or where the other driver has no insurance.
What’s Covered by Car Insurance?
Drivers in most states are required to carry liability insurance by law.
Liability coverage covers property damage, medical bills, and other costs incurred by people you hit while driving. If you smash into someone’s rear bumper at an intersection, for example, then your liability coverage would cover the repair costs the other driver must pay. You caused the damage, so you have to pay for it.
Depending on which insurance you have, and depending on your bumper damage situation, your bumper damage may or may not be covered. Here’s a basic explanation of how each insurance option works:
Liability Insurance: Liability insurance includes property damage liability coverage and bodily injury liability coverage. This covers any damages you inflict to other people and property while driving. If you hit a pedestrian and the pedestrian requires $1,000 of hospital treatment, for example, then your bodily injury liability coverage should cover this cost. Or, if you hit another vehicle and inflict $20,000 of damage, then your property damage liability coverage will cover it. Liability coverage will cover bumper damage on another vehicle if you hit the other vehicle and are declared at-fault for the accident.
Collision Insurance: Collision insurance covers damage to your own vehicle after an accident. If you are found at-fault for an accident, for example, then your liability coverage should cover the bills of the other driver, while your own collision coverage may cover the cost of repairing your own vehicle. Collision coverage is optional in every state.
Comprehensive Coverage: Comprehensive coverage will cover non-accident-related damage to your vehicle. If a tree falls onto your vehicle and damages your bumper, for example, then you would make a comprehensive coverage claim to get it covered by car insurance. Or, if you hit a deer or other animal while driving, then your comprehensive coverage will cover the repair bill. Comprehensive coverage is optional in every state.
Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist Coverage: If you are a victim of a hit-and-run, or if you are hit by an uninsured or underinsured driver, then your uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage will cover the damage. If another driver hits your car’s bumper in a parking lot and flees the scene, for example, then your bumper damage may be covered by your own uninsured motorist coverage. This coverage is optional in most states but required in some.
At-Fault Versus Not-At-Fault
Whether or not your bumper damage is covered depends largely on who is at-fault for the accident.
If you are at-fault for the accident, then your liability coverage will cover damage to the other person’s vehicle (including the other person’s bumper). Meanwhile, you can make a claim for your own damage repairs through your own collision coverage (assuming you have collision coverage).
If you are not at-fault for the accident, then the other driver’s liability coverage will cover the cost of repairing your vehicle – including any damage to your bumper. If the other driver is unknown, fled the scene, or has no insurance, then you can make a claim for damage repairs through your uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.
Do I Have to Pay a Deductible for Bumper Damage Repairs?
Bumper damage repairs may be relatively cheap. If your deductible is, say, $1,000 and your bumper damage is $1,200, then you may not want to make a claim.
You will not have to pay a deductible when making a claim through the other driver’s insurance company. If the other driver was at-fault for the accident, for example, then you will not have to pay a deductible.
Meanwhile, if you were at-fault for the accident, or if you are making a claim under your collision coverage or comprehensive coverage, then you will have to pay your deductible.
Typically, comprehensive coverage claims have lower deductibles. Comprehensive coverage claims will also not raise future insurance premiums. Collision coverage claims, meanwhile, tend to have higher deductibles, and collision claims will raise future insurance premiums.
Bumper damage is covered by car insurance just like any other type of damage.
Contact your insurance company to initiate your bumper damage claim. Your car insurance company can also help you decide if making the bumper damage claim is worth it – or if it’s better to pay for repairs out of pocket.