Admitting Fault And Its Effect On Your Auto Insurance Claim
One of the most common pieces of advice that drivers receive when they begin their time behind the wheel is to never admit fault if they are involved in an accident, even if the accident was clearly caused by them. They are made fearful by horror stories of high car insurance quotes and massive payouts that cripple drivers financially, and are convinced that if the words come out of their mouth they will be forever branded as bad drivers. This has led to a situation where drivers will claim other vehicles "made" them run into them, even if fault is clear-cut. The driver who rear ends someone may argue that it was the other party's fault for stopping suddenly, "making" their vehicle plow into the back of the other car. While every accident has the possibility for extenuating circumstances, the effects of admitting fault for an auto accident are not as dire as many believe.
When an accident occurs, the first thing a driver should do is check themselves for injuries and try to determine if their vehicle is still drivable, as well as the condition of the other driver and vehicle. If there are no injuries and both vehicles can be moved, drivers should take them off of the roadway and exchange information. If a driver is injured or a car leaking fluid, it is best to call emergency services and simply wait for them to arrive without trying to move the vehicles. Once a driver has a handle on what has happened, it is a good idea to exit the vehicle and assess the situation, as well as take pictures if a camera or cell phone camera is on hand. It is at this point that most drivers fear that they will be accused of being at fault and that they will have to be silent in order to pursue their insurance claim.
While it is not necessary to verbally admitting fault in an accident you have caused, it is important to tell the truth both to police and to your insurance company. Every accident which occurs on the road will have one party declared at fault and it is better to admit to it than to have the company find out through their own investigations. There is no criminal charge for being at fault, so long as dangerous or impaired driving was not the cause of the accident, and a single at-fault accident will not cause car insurance quotes to skyrocket. Getting out of a car and declaring fault or demanding the other party do so is unnecessary - simply being honest in any statements written will suffice and cause no issues.