If you have no collision insurance, your vehicle will have no coverage under your car insurance policy if you cause an accident. When you’re at-fault for an accident and do not have collision insurance, you must pay out of pocket to repair or replace your own vehicle. Collision insurance usually is not needed if the other driver is at-fault, since their liability insurance will pay for damage to your car.
Collision insurance can sometimes be helpful after accidents when fault isn’t clear. If you have collision insurance, you can file a claim with your own insurance company while you wait for the insurance adjuster to make an official judgement of fault. Then, if the other driver is determined to be at fault, their insurer will reimburse yours.
Not having collision coverage can also make a claim difficult if you’re hit by an uninsured or unidentified driver. Unless you carry uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, your only option is to sue an uninsured driver. Still, you’re unlikely to collect anything if you win, as a driver without car insurance is more likely to be unable to pay damages. And some states don’t allow you to use uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage after a hit and run, which means you’ll have to pay for the damage yourself.
It’s generally a good idea to carry collision insurance if you can’t afford to pay out of pocket for repairing or replacing your car. On the other hand, if you have the financial resources to repair or replace your car, you can usually consider dropping collision coverage if the cost exceeds 10% of your vehicle’s value.
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