What Happens If I Don't Report an Accident to My Auto Insurance Company?

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You may not want to report an auto accident to your insurance company because you're afraid your premium will go up. Sometimes it looks at first glance like there hasn't been much damage, so you decide to just pay out of pocket. That can be a mistake that costs you a lot of money because hidden damages can add up in a hurry.

Fender Bender Spender

Most states require that you report an accident to the police or department of transportation if the estimated damage exceeds a set amount. Talking to your insurance company right away can help you get a claim settled, especially if it turns out to be for more than you thought. According to Consumer Reports, the actual cost for repairs can total almost $10,000 for two cars involved in a 10-mile-per-hour crash that initially looks minor. The cost was highest for cars with mismatched bumpers, like a hatchback colliding with an SUV. Failing to report right away can limit what your insurance company can do for you and leave you paying a lot more than your deductible.