What to Do If Someone Hits Your Parked Car
You've successfully finished your grocery haul and as you make your way back to your car, you see that your car's been hit. What do you do? Whether someone accidentally hits your parked car or vice versa, try not to panic at the sight of a parking lot accident. With the proper coverage, you can rest assured that your car will be covered for any damages. But what coverage is needed to protect you from incidents like this? Let's discuss some insurance options for you and what your next steps should be if you find yourself in this situation.
What are the possible scenarios that can happen to my parked car?
Whether you're legally parked on the side of the street or parked in a parking lot with tight spaces or an abundance of cars, there are many incidents that can happen to anyone. Here are a few possible scenarios:
- Someone hit your parked car but left a note with their contact information.
- Someone hit your parked car and is still waiting there so information can be exchanged.
- Someone hit your parked car and left.
- You’ve hit someone else's parked car.
Will insurance cover me?
Your coverage will vary depending on the situation, the type of coverage included in your auto insurance policy and the province you live in. Let's consider some examples:
Example 1: Someone hit your parked car and you've exchanged information.
In this instance, you won't need to have optional physical damage coverage on your policy. In most provinces (AB, ON, QC, NB, NS, NFLD, PEI), your base car insurance will include Direct Compensation Property Damage (DCPD). This covers physical damages to your car that resulted from a not at-fault accident under what's referred to as a 'No-Fault' insurance system, meaning you deal directly with your insurer to resolve your claim.
Example 2: Someone hit your parked car and left.
Unfortunately, this is classified as a Hit and Run. You'll need to have Collision or Upset coverage or All Perils coverage to be covered in a Hit and Run incident, or Comprehensive coverage if you reside in Alberta. These coverage options will cover any physical damages to your vehicle. Keep in mind that your deductible will need to be paid when filing a claim. If, however, you're an existing TD Insurance customer and you've added our Grand Touring Solution® to your policy, you may be eligible to have your deductible waived. So long as your vehicle is declared a Total Loss or if a Hit and Run is reported to the police within 24 hours of it happening. Keep in mind that the 24-hour rule doesn't apply if you're reporting a Hit and Run in Quebec, although you should file a police report and notify your insurer as soon as possible.
Example 3: You've accidentally hit someone else's car and exchanged information with them.
When you're considered at fault for the accident, you'll need to have Collision or Upset coverage, or All Perils coverage to cover the repairs for your own vehicle. Again, when filing a claim, you'll be required to pay your deductible amount first before the rest of your insurance kicks in. And similarly to how a road accident claim works, if you're the one responsible for the accident, you may see a slight change in your premium. However, if you have accident forgiveness coverage on your policy, your first at-fault accident won't affect your premium at renewal. If, for whatever reason you don't have the right coverage, you'll be responsible for paying the damages to your own vehicle out of pocket. The damages to the other vehicle, on the other hand, will be covered by DCPD on their policy, as outlined in the first example.
You'll notice it pays to have the right coverage to be protected no matter what happens to you and your car, both on the road or in the lot. If you're looking for the right coverage for all your needs, get a quote in minutes with TD Insurance.
If someone's hit my parked car or I've hit someone else's car, what are my next steps?
Treat it like you would with any other car accident on a main road. You should:
- Ensure that everyone involved is unharmed.
- Report the accident to the police if the other party is not present, if injuries were caused, and/or if the cars involved in the accident have extensive damage.
- Take photos from multiple angles of your car and the other car involved (if present) to show damage.
- Exchange information with the person involved – name, phone number, driver's license, insurance provider and policy number. If you’re the person who's responsible for the damage, it's important to either try to find the owner of the damaged car or wait for them to come back to their car. If, however, you're unable to do so, leave a note with all your contact information so they can reach you.
- Contact your insurer as soon as possible to notify them of what happened to you and your car and to start a claim. If you're uncertain about the claims process and need some quick advice, check out our car claims FAQ.
What if I'm a TD Insurance customer, what are my options?
As a TD Insurance customer with the right coverage, you can skip the calls and go straight to the TD Insurance app. You have the benefit of starting a claim right at your fingertips. The app will help guide you every step of the way throughout the claims process, including a post-accident checklist and tools to help you take and upload photos. The TD Insurance app also helps provide you with information for a tow truck (if needed) and can show you the nearest TD Insurance Auto Centres in your area — your one stop shop for claims advice, rentals and vehicle repair.
Whether your car is completely damaged or has a small ding, and whether it's happened to you or was caused by you, contact your insurer and let them know your situation — we're here to help.