Animal collision - does the insurer pay out?
A animal collision is often a big scare. In addition, the collision can also cause considerable damage, especially if you collide with a deer or a wild boar. A bird alone can cause substantial damage. Who should you turn to in order to recover damages to your car?
In animal collisions, there is an important distinction to be made. They can be animals that have no owner, such as deer and wild boar. And you have animals that do have an owner, such as dogs and cats. This distinction is important. In a collision with a dog, you can hold the animal's owner liable for the damage to your car. Animals such as stray wildlife have no owner. If you have the right car insurance, you can claim the damage from the car insurance company.
When does car insurance pay out?
You can submit the claim to your insurer if the car is WA limited casco or WA cascade insured. With the WA car insurance, you will not receive any payment from the insurer. For the WA limited casco it has to be damage caused by a collision with an animal. With an evasive maneuver in which you do not hit the animal, no payment will be made. For example, you hit a tree when swerve. The insurer will not pay this damage. With the All Risk car insurance you also get this damage paid out.
Does a collision with animals cost you claim-free years?
No, not with most insurers. So you get compensated for the damage without paying a higher premium in the following years due to fewer claim-free years. There is an exception in case of a claim on the third-party insurance where you did not hit the animal, but something else. This claim does cost you claim-free years.
What about pet collision damage?
Damage caused by stray pets you can hold the owner of the animal liable for. The owner can claim the damage back on the liability insurance for private individuals. This is because pets are co-insured on this policy. In practice, it is often tricky. To whom does the stray dog you hit belong? If it cannot be found out, you can file the claim again with the auto insurer. Even if the owner is known, you can turn to your own insurer. Your insurer will take care of holding the animal's owner liable.
After a collision with big game, you are required to report the collision to the police. They in turn take care of calling in wildlife management. They take the animal away or try to track down the hit game.
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