A police report provides an official and detailed description of what happened in the accident. Police reports are required when it comes to injuries, significant damage, or extenuating circumstances. However, you can act as your own detail-oriented advocate in case of minor incidents. For example, if you have reimbursement coverage for a rental car, you may be entitled to a rental vehicle while your car is being repaired.
You can also tell your own insurance company about the accident in case you need to file a claim against your own policy because the at-fault driver had no insurance, was underinsured, or was denied liability by your insurance company. You file a collision claim against your own insurance policy because you need a new car as soon as possible. Car insurance is a rare product that you buy in the hope of never using it, but if you're involved in an accident or your vehicle is damaged, you may need to file a claim. While the payment was meant to compensate you for the costs of repairing the car, your insurer doesn't require you to repair your vehicle.
The process for filing a car insurance claim with your insurance company is similar, whether you have a police report or not. The amount of your policy's auto insurance deductible indicates how much you pay out of pocket for a covered claim, while your coverage limits represent the maximum dollar limit that your insurer could pay in a given category. In certain situations, your insurance company has the legal right to “subrogate,” meaning that it can ask the at-fault third party for reimbursement for an insurance loss. Don't expect the at-fault driver to contact your insurance company; it's up to you to report the accident to the other driver's insurance company.
Understanding how the claims process works, including reporting an accident, working with an insurance adjuster and repairing your car, if necessary, can make filing a claim easier and less stressful. This information is not an insurance policy, does not refer to any specific insurance policy, and does not modify any provision, limitation or exclusion that is expressly stated in any insurance policy. Filing a car insurance claim can be a difficult process, and you're not the only one with questions about how things work. Keep in mind that while police officers sometimes determine fault, it can be a difficult and time-consuming task to prove to an insurance company that the insured driver caused the accident.
If you are not insured by Progressive or are a Progressive customer without logging in to your account, you can report or view an existing claim here. Through subrogation, your insurance company can now try to recover the payment you made to the insurer that originally denied fault.