Head of PR (Enzo Collision)
August 25, 2023
Accidents happen, but nothing is more frustrating than discovering your car was hit while parked. But instead of letting your emotions get in the way, you should focus on the right thing steps to do next.
In this blog post, we’ll guide you on what to do when someone hits your parked car and vice versa. Keep reading to know more!
Someone hit my parked car, what should I do?
For sure, the last thing you should do is panic and lose your temper. We know that it’s frustrating, but instead of making matters worse, you can do the following steps:
1. Assess the Situation
If someone hits your car while parked, the first thing you should do is check the damage. You should look closely at your vehicle and inspect for dents, broken lights, scratches, and so on. This way, you’ll know if it’s still safe to drive your car or if you need to call a tow truck service.
But before you move your car, you should contact the authorities first (more on this below). After all, you wouldn’t want to ruin the ‘crime scene’.
2. Report the incident
Once you’ve checked your car, the next step is to report the incident right away. You should call your local police department, so they can investigate the matter. Also, they can advise you about what to do next to ensure that you’ll be compensated properly.
Also, filing a police report is crucial in processing your insurance claim later on. The report usually includes the date and time of the incident, details of the damage, location, photos, and parties involved. All these will support your insurance claim and reduce the risk of getting denied.
If the person at fault is nowhere in sight, you should file a police report for hit and-run parked car. The police can also tell you what to do in a hit-and-run parked car situation. From there, they will start the investigation to find the culprit.
3. Collect Information
While waiting for the police to arrive, you should use the time to collect information about the incidents. Write down the time, date, and location of the incident as well as the nature of the incident.
Also, ask surrounding establishments if they have cameras on the location where your car is parked. Kindly request a copy of the footage that you can use for filling a police report and supporting your claim.
Aside from that, try to look for witnesses who can give you more information on the situation. Make sure that you ask for their name and contact number should you need their help later on. But what if it’s a hit-and-run parked car, no witness? You need to take notes and file a report just the same.
If the person at fault is at the scene, ask for his contact and insurance information. You should also request the person to stay and wait for the authorities to arrive.
4. Document the Incident
Start by taking photos and videos of the damage – both close-ups and wide shots. This will be very useful when filing a police report and processing an insurance claim.
Aside from that, you should also take pictures of the surrounding areas. Include shots of any relevant signage or landmark that can help establish the location of the incident.
As we’ve mentioned earlier, these photographs will help in speeding up your insurance payments. It will also be a valuable piece of evidence in case you’re planning to file legal charges.
If other vehicles or property is also damaged, you should also take pictures of this. You should also jot down notes about their conditions to help support your police report and insurance claims.
5. Contact Your Insurance Company
Once you’re reporting the incident to the authorities, it’s now time to call your insurance company. It’s important to contact them as soon as possible to prevent any hiccups. Take note that insurers will start to get skeptical if you wait for days to report that your car was hit while parked.
Make sure that you’re prepared with all the necessary documents to support your claim. You should compile all the photos and videos you’ve taken together with eyewitness accounts. All these will speed up the investigation of your insurance company, leading to a smooth claims process.
Aside from that, you should receive your policy coverage and deductibles if there are any.
6. File a Claim
The next step on what to do if someone hits your parked car is to file a claim. This way, you can start the repair of your vehicle without shouldering all the costs. If the person at fault cooperated, his policy will be liable for the damage repair.
Aside from all the documents you need to submit, your insurer may also for estimates from their approved repair shops.
7. Repairing Your Car
Once your claim is approved, it’s time for the elbow grease. You should look for a licensed and certified collision repair shop. Make sure that the shop specializes in the specific make and model of your vehicle. This is much so if you’re driving a high-end car.
Also, keep all receipts and documentation from the repairs. You can use this for future reference in case you figure in a similar accident.
Aside from that, you should stay in touch with your insurance company throughout the duration of the repairs. This way, you can provide them with additional information as needed.
How to avoid getting your car hit while parked
“My car got hit while parked, how do I prevent it from happening again?” As with any accident, there are many ways to save your car from similar problems in the future.
Here are some methods that will protect your vehicle – and you – from the dangers of parked car fender-benders:
- Park in a well-lit area. If you’re parking at night, choose a spot near street lights or establishments. This way, your vehicle is visible to other drivers and less likely to get hit.
- Avoid high-traffic areas. Parking on the side of a busy road is a bold choice and increases the risk of accidents. Instead, choose quieter areas or roads with lower speed limits.
- Choose a wide parking area. We know that this isn’t always easy to come by, but try to find a spot with enough space for other drivers to maneuver.
- Use parking technologies. While this won’t necessarily shield your car from getting hit, it helps in filing a report or insurance claim. Consider installing dash cams, rear cameras, and parking sensors for added security.
- Check nearby hazards. Aside from other cars, your parked vehicle can also get hit by shopping cards and poles. Also, you have to be mindful of curbs and uneven surfaces that could damage your car.
What happens if you hit a parked car and leave?
Wait before we end this post, let’s flip the situation quickly, shall we? What if you’re the one who hit a parked car and decided to take off?
Although you didn’t intend for the accident to happen, you’re still completely liable for the damage. Also, leaving the scene of the accident will not do you any favor. It’s a criminal offense and you can get sued by the owner of the car you hit.
Remember that hit-and-runs are illegal and unethical. Instead of getting scared, you should stop and think of the following:
- Wait for the car owner to arrive to discuss the situation.
- If you can’t stay, write your contact and insurance information on a piece of paper and tuck it on the car’s windshield.
- You can also call the police to report the incident yourself.
- Take your own photos and videos of the incident, so you won’t be liable for damages that will occur once the car is moved.
- Inform your insurance company about the accident
- Talk to witnesses to help reenact the accident
- Consider calling an attorney if the car owner is threatening to sue you.
- Avoid freaking out or fleeing the scene out of fear (again, hit-and-runs are illegal!)
- Don’t lose your patience.
But what should I do if I hit a parked car and fled the scene? You should try to calm down and call the police. This way, you can explain what happened and avoid the possibility of getting serious penalties. Also, you can reach out to a lawyer to help you on what to do next.
Do you need repairs for your damaged car?
“Someone hit my car while parked, what now?” Well, after you’ve reported it to the authorities and called your insurance company, the next thing to do is contact us at Enzo Collision.
Our team of auto body experts will restore your vehicle to its original condition. Whether it’s a dented hood, crumpled panels, shattered glass, and so on, you can count on us to fix it for you.
We also offer complete auto insurance claim handling with an onsite lawyer. The best part? If you’re eligible, you’ll get a free rental car while we repair your vehicle. Call us today and see if qualify!