Does My Insurance Cover Hitting A Deer? Encountering a deer while driving can be a nerve-wracking experience. Unfortunately, these incidents are not uncommon, especially in wooded or rural areas. Understanding your insurance coverage in such situations is essential to avoid unexpected expenses and potential rate increases.
In this article, we will explore the topic of whether your insurance covers hitting a deer. Additionally, we will discuss the different types of insurance coverage and provide guidance on what to do if you find yourself in this unfortunate situation.
Does Insurance cover Deer Hits?
When it comes to insurance coverage for hitting a deer, the answer depends on your insurance policy. Generally, comprehensive auto insurance policies are designed to cover damage to your vehicle caused by non-collision incidents, such as hitting a deer. Comprehensive coverage is optional and typically provides protection against a wide range of perils, including vandalism, theft, fire, and natural disasters.
So does my insurance cover hitting a deer? If you have comprehensive coverage as part of your auto insurance policy, it is likely that the damages resulting from hitting a deer will be covered. However, it is essential to review your policy documents or consult your insurance provider to confirm the specific coverage details.
Is Hitting a Deer Comprehensive or Collision?
When it comes to coverage for hitting a deer, it is comprehensive insurance that typically comes into play. Comprehensive coverage protects you from a wide range of risks that can damage your vehicle, including collisions with animals. While you might assume that collision coverage would apply, hitting a deer is considered a comprehensive claim rather than a collision claim.
Swerving to avoid a deer may result in a collision claim if you hit another vehicle, object, or roll your own vehicle. Understanding this distinction is crucial because collision coverage often involves higher deductibles and premiums compared to comprehensive policies.
Will My Insurance Go Up If I Hit A Deer?
In most cases, hitting a deer and filing a comprehensive claim will not directly cause your insurance rates to increase. However, if you have a history of filing multiple claims within a specified period, including deer-related claims, it could potentially lead to higher premiums. Insurance companies evaluate various factors when determining rate adjustments, so it’s always prudent to check with your carrier to understand their specific policies and guidelines regarding comprehensive claims.
What To Do If You Hit a Deer
If you find yourself in the unfortunate situation of hitting a deer, here are some steps to take:
Ensure Your Safety: First and foremost, prioritize your safety and the safety of other occupants in your vehicle. Apply the brakes, slow down, and maintain control of your vehicle to avoid further accidents.
Do Not Swerve: It may be instinctive to swerve to avoid a deer, but this can be more dangerous and increase the risk of colliding with other vehicles or objects. Instead, reduce your speed and maintain a straight course.
Pull Over Safely: If it is safe to do so, pull over to the side of the road and turn on your hazard lights. Assess the situation and determine the extent of damage to your vehicle.
Contact Authorities: While not always required by insurance companies, it is advisable to contact the local authorities and file a police report. This report can serve as supporting documentation for your insurance claim.
Document the Incident: Take photos of the scene, including the damage to your vehicle and any visible signs of the collision with the deer. This evidence can help substantiate your claim.
Notify Your Insurance Company: Contact your insurance provider as soon as possible to report the incident. They will guide you through the claims process and provide further instructions.
Seek Professional Inspection: Schedule an appointment with a trusted mechanic or an approved repair shop recommended by your insurance company to assess the damage to your vehicle. They will provide an estimate for the necessary repairs.
Pay Your Deductible: If you have comprehensive coverage, you will likely need to pay the deductible specified in your policy before your insurance coverage kicks in to cover the remaining repair costs.
Frequently Asked Questions
Does car insurance cover hitting a deer?
Yes, if you have comprehensive auto insurance, hitting a deer should be covered under this policy. Comprehensive coverage extends beyond collisions with other vehicles and covers various non-collision incidents, including hitting a deer.
What do insurance companies call it when you hit a deer?
Insurance companies often refer to collisions with animals, including deer, as “animal strikes” or “wildlife accidents.” It is a term used to encompass any incident involving a vehicle and an animal on the road, which includes not only deer but also other animals like moose, elk, or even smaller creatures like raccoons or birds.
Can insurance prove I didn’t hit a deer?
In the event of a claim, insurance companies rely on the information provided by the policyholder, along with any available evidence, to assess the situation. While insurance companies cannot definitively prove that you did not hit a deer, they may consider various factors to determine the cause of the damage. These factors can include the nature and location of the damage, witness statements, and any other relevant evidence that can help establish the circumstances of the incident.
Does insurance cover a deer hitting your car?
In most cases, insurance policies do not cover the damages caused by a deer physically hitting your car. However, comprehensive coverage, as mentioned earlier, typically provides protection from damage resulting from hitting a deer. So, while your insurance may not cover the deer itself colliding with your vehicle, it will likely cover the subsequent damages caused by the collision.
Being involved in an accident with a deer can be a distressing experience, but knowing whether your insurance covers such incidents can provide reassurance and help alleviate the financial burden. Comprehensive auto insurance policies typically offer coverage for hitting a deer, along with a range of other non-collision incidents. However, it is crucial to review your policy documents or consult your insurance provider to ensure that you have the appropriate coverage in place.
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