Property Damage in a Car Accident

When there is property damage to a home as a result of a car accident, whose insurance is responsible? Here's a look at when property damage insurance applies and what you can expect.

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Property Damage in a Car Accident

In a typical car accident, the driver’s liability insurance covers damages related to property damage or any type of damage done to another person’s property. If you are unable to collect on those losses, though, what should you do and will your home insurance help you? Here’s what you need to know about property damage after a car accident.

Will Liability Insurance Cover Property Damage You Cause to Another Person?

When an accident happens, and damage occurs to another person’s property, most liability insurance policies will provide financial compensation for the losses that occurred. Things can get complicated when there are losses to a home caused by a car accident. There are many instances in which this can make filing a claim for property damage a bit more difficult.


If you are the driver in a car accident, and your vehicle strikes another person’s property, your vehicle liability insurance may help to cover the losses that property owner suffered. It could be damage to the home itself, to a fence in the yard, or any other type of physical property you cause.


If your property liability insurance does not offer enough coverage for these losses, you may be still be responsible for the losses. In some situations, the property owner can file a lawsuit against you to try to recover some of those losses. The most important thing in this situation is to have a robust liability insurance plan. Generally, the state minimum requirement may not be enough if the damage to the home is significant.


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Will Your Own Property Insurance Cover the Damage Someone Causes to Your Property?

What if you own the home and someone causes damage to your home with their car? In some situations, your home insurance policy may offer coverage to help you. However, it will more than likely be up to you to gather the information from the driver that causes the accident and then file a claim against that driver for the losses he or she caused.


In this situation, you will file a claim against the individual’s liability insurance. The insurance company will estimate the amount of work that needs to be done and then provide the funding for the repairs. You should also file a police report to document the incident. This may also help in the recovery of losses you have. If the driver does not have enough insurance to cover the losses, you may need to pursue that individual in a court of law to recover your losses.

Property Damage Liability – What to Do When Someone Drives Off

In some situations, you do not have any information about the driver. He or she may have caused damage to your home and then left the scene. If this occurs, your first step is to contact the police. Allow the police to try to locate the driver and to create a file of the events that happened. In some situations, it will be possible to file a claim for the losses with your home’s insurance policy. The type and amount of coverage you have will determine if your home insurance policy will cover the losses you have. It may be seen as an act of violence. Your insurance company will try to pursue the driver for the losses if he or she is caught.

What If the Driver’s General Liability Insurance Isn’t Enough?

In some situations, the driver’s personal liability insurance is limited. This is sometimes common because the state minimum for liability insurance is typically low. This can leave you without the funds you need to make repairs to your car. In this situation, you can try to file a claim with your own home insurance company. Your insurer may also want to pursue the responsible party in a court of law to recover some of the losses. It is possible to force the liquidation of their property to help pay for the damage they caused.

Filing a Claim for Property Damage with Your Home Insurance

If you have property damage of any type, document the incident thoroughly. It is also important for you to contact the police to file a report. If driving under the influence or other reckless driving charges occur, that may help to ensure the driver changes his or her driving habits. Work closely with the auto insurance agent or with your own home insurance company to file the claim. Be sure to have a professional inspect the property to determine the true extent of the damage.


When someone drives into your home or otherwise damages your property, you have the legal right to compensation. Taking steps with the right insurance company to recover the losses and get your property fixed is essential.


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