Getting into an accident is always a stressful experience. However, it’s even worse when you realize that the accident wasn’t with another driver, but with an unoccupied parked car. Whether it’s a small scratch or a huge dent, a damaged parked car can lead to a lot of confusion and frustration. In this article, we’ll discuss the steps you should take if you graze a parked car.
Stay Calm and Take Pictures
The first thing you should do when you realize that you’ve hit a parked car is to take a deep breath and try to stay calm. It’s important to not panic or flee the scene. Instead, take pictures of the damage to both your car and the parked car. This will help you document the incident and provide proof of the damage you caused.
Leave a Note
Once you’ve taken pictures, you should leave a note with your contact information for the owner of the parked car. Be sure to include your name, phone number, and insurance information. If possible, try to provide a brief explanation of what happened. Leaving a note shows that you’re taking responsibility for the accident and that you’re willing to pay for any damages.
Contact the Police
It’s always a good idea to contact the police after hitting a parked car, especially if the damage is significant. In some states, it’s actually a legal requirement to report these types of accidents to the police. The police can help you document the incident and provide a report that can be used by your insurance company.
Contact Your Insurance Company
After you’ve reported the accident to the police and left a note for the owner of the parked car, you should contact your insurance company. Inform them of the incident and provide them with any pictures or documentation you have. Your insurance company will likely send an adjuster to assess the damage and provide an estimate for repairs.
Pay for the Damages
Once the owner of the parked car contacts you, it’s important to pay for the damages. If you have insurance, your insurance company will cover the cost of the damages up to your policy limits. However, if the damages exceed your policy limits, you may be responsible for paying the difference out of pocket.
Hitting a parked car can be a stressful experience, but it’s important to take responsibility for your actions and do the right thing. By staying calm, taking pictures, leaving a note, contacting the police, and notifying your insurance company, you can minimize the impact of the accident and ensure that the damages are taken care of. Remember, accidents happen, but it’s how you handle them that matters.
Do I have to report a graze on a parked car to the police?
- Depending on the state, it may be a legal requirement to report accidents involving a parked car to the police. It’s always best to check with your local laws to determine what your obligations are.
Will my insurance rates go up if I graze a parked car?
- Your insurance rates may go up if you file a claim for a graze on a parked car. However, the extent to which your rates increase will depend on the severity of the damages and your driving history.
Can I be sued for hitting a parked car?
- Yes, you can be sued for hitting a parked car. If the owner of the parked car decides to take legal action against you, it’s important to have insurance coverage to protect yourself.
What should I do if I can’t locate the owner of the parked car?
- If you can’t locate the owner of the parked car, you should leave a note with your contact information and try to find any witnesses who may have seen the accident.
How long do I have to report a graze on a parked car to my insurance company?
- It’s important to report any accidents to your insurance company as soon as possible. Failure to report an accident in a timely manner may result in a denial of coverage.