09 Nov Can I Cancel My Car Accident Claim? (Read Before Trying)
If you’ve gotten into an accident related to a vehicle, you’ve probably been told to file a car accident claim. However, after you’ve filed a request, you may decide to cancel it. Claims can sometimes have a direct impact on your car insurance rates, or they take a long time to process. So, what if you wanted to cancel the claim after filing? Is it possible to cancel it? You aren’t the only one asking these questions, and it’s worth knowing the answers.
Can You Cancel a Car Accident Claim?
In short, yes, you can cancel a claim after it’s been filed. You can cancel your request as long as you are the one who opened it initially. If the other driver files a claim against you, you can’t cancel that claim. This also depends on what insurance provider you have as most, if not all, allow you to withdraw a claim.
Insurance companies determine fault through thorough investigation. Your state will fall into categories regarding responsibility: no-fault and at-fault states. Oklahoma is an at-fault state, meaning the driver who causes an accident uses their insurance to pay for the other driver’s bills from the accident. During the investigation, the available evidence is used to decide who is at fault for the accident.
“Fault” is measured in percentages and can be shared by drivers. Oklahoma has modified comparative negligence laws, which means if you are 50% more at fault, you cannot collect any damages from the other driver. If you are less than 50% at fault, you can collect damages minus the percentage you are at fault. So, for example, if you are 25% at fault, you can recover 75% of what you spent on damages.
How Claims Are Handled After They’re Filed
In your insurance policy, it should expressly state the insurer’s promise to make payment to you or a claimant when the policy is active, and you file a covered claim. If you are in an accident or your car is vandalized, you can file a claim. After notifying your agent of your loss, they’ll gather all the information needed to have the claim investigated. The investor will then order reports and loss statements to determine whose fault the accident was.
How to Cancel Your Car Accident Claim
You may have to fill out forms or cancel your claim in writing. You’ll want to make sure that you go through the proper channels to cancel if you wish to do so. Contact your insurance company to determine their cancellation process. Most companies have a claims department that you can talk to when filing or withdrawing. You may want to contact your insurance agent or claims representative, if possible. Most providers also allow you to cancel online. They may have you sign a form stating that you voluntarily withdrew your claim.
If you’ve filed a claim and want to withdraw, it’s easier to do so while the claim is still under investigation. This is because no money has been exchanged, and nothing has been decided yet. It’s better to cancel sooner rather than later so that resources aren’t unnecessarily spent.
However, know that if you have already received a check from the insurance company, it isn’t necessarily too late to cancel. Generally, as long as you haven’t deposited or cashed the check, you can still cancel your claim. Be sure to call the insurance company to ensure that you can still cancel and send the bill back.
If you are already working with a personal injury attorney, they can help you communicate with your insurance company efficiently and thoroughly.
Common Reasons Drivers Want to Cancel Their Claim
There are many different reasons drivers may want to cancel their claims. A common cause is not wanting to pay the deductible or if the deductible costs more than your repairs. For example, if you were in a car accident and filed a claim before a mechanic could give you a quote for the damages when they tell you the repair costs is only a little more than your deductible. Sometimes it’s easier or cheaper to make your own repairs as well. In both of these kinds of situations, drivers commonly cancel their claims.
Drivers also may want to cancel a claim if they realize it could increase their premiums even though they’ve only suffered minor damage. If you won’t complete the process, it’s best not to file a claim in the first place. However, if you’ve filed and want to cancel, consider how withdrawing your claim may affect your ability to recover financially after the accident.
Some drivers may just want to avoid the claims process simply. A claims process could take weeks or months to process. Or you may not like the claim on your record.
Here’s a simplified list of reasons you may want to cancel your claim:
- You can’t afford your deductible.
- You want to avoid future rate increases.
- You want to maintain a claims-free discount from your insurer or maintain a safe driving record.
- The cost of repairing your vehicle is approximately the same as your deductible.
- You discover that you can complete the repairs cheaper.
Does a Claim Go On Your Record?
When you withdraw a claim, you won’t receive a payout from your insurance company, and it will show up on your record with the company. However, it will be listed as a withdrawn or zero-dollar claim. This can ultimately help you with your relationship with your insurance provider, and there should not be any increase in your policy provided that you are not at fault. This also depends on how your policy is written, so you should speak with your insurance agent to find out your case’s specifics.
Now you know about your record, but what happens to your rates?
Will My Premium Go Up?
Your premium rates depend on a few things. First, it depends on your insurance company’s policy. Depending on the policy, the insurance company may only increase premiums for drivers who are at fault in an accident. Some insurance companies have accident forgiveness, even if you are the one at fault. However, this isn’t true for all companies. They may increase your premium if you are not at fault. It’s crucial to check with your insurance to determine their policy. However, your insurance provider is unlikely to increase your premiums for a claim with a $0 payout if you withdraw your claim.
Second, it depends on which insurance company you file a claim through. If you are not at fault, you can file with your insurance or with the other driver’s. Filing with the at-fault driver’s insurance company generally protects you from an increase in your premium. It could even allow you to recover the money you paid for your deductible. However, keep in mind that it typically takes longer when you file with the at-fault insurance company. If you aren’t sure which insurance company to file with or have questions, speak with an experienced personal injury attorney like Truskett.
Can You Cancel in Any Situation?
You would not be able to cancel a claim if you have been found at fault for the accident. You wouldn’t be able to withdraw as a liability claim benefiting the other driver. Your insurance company would pay out damages to the other driver. If you’re at fault, the claim could stay open for weeks or months, especially if the other party is seeking medical treatment.
Statute of Limitations’ Effect on Your Claim
Keep in mind the statute of limitations on your claim. The statute of limitations in the time frame in which you can file a lawsuit. Typically, the time frame starts the day of the event or at the discovery of an injury. If your statute of limitations is nearing its end, then you can either accept a settlement offer to end your claim or file a lawsuit to continue to court.
The Difference a Personal Injury Lawyer Can Make
Having a personal injury attorney on your side can immensely help your understanding of your case, the process, and what to do when you need or want to withdraw your claim. A personal injury attorney can help you face reality after an accident and help you navigate the legal process or making a claim or filing a lawsuit. It’s essential to you and your well-being that you contact a personal injury lawyer today.
No matter what personal injury case you may be facing, a personal injury lawyer can assist you every step of the way. At Truskett Law, we exclusively practice personal injury law and are dedicated to serving our clients. We have your best interest at heart and want to see you succeed! Our clients are our highest priority. We’ll be honest with you, whether good or bad because that’s what you deserve. Truskett Law understands that personal injury cases can be overwhelming. That’s why you should hire the right people you trust to handle your case!
Don’t risk it. Call Truskett.