Is it reasonable for someone’s insurance to charge you $2000 for a small dent that you made on their trunk?

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Nov 29, 2012

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Insurance Question from San Diego, CA

Asked on 11/29/2012

Is it reasonable for someone’s insurance to charge you $2000 for a small dent that you made on their trunk? I was backing up while he was backing up too and we both did not see and made a small crash.

Answer given on December 06, 2012

If you and another party were both backing and struck each other it is likely that the insurance companies will have each driver’s insurance company handle their own damage. That would mean your insurance company pays for your repairs and the other company pays for its client.You need to report this to your insurance company and let them work with the other insurance company and come to a settlement. If you are considered responsible entirely for the accident then your insurance company will pay the other person’s damage. They will determine the proper amount for the damages caused. However, it is unlikely they will take full responsibility of you were both backing up.If you don’t have insurance then you may have a problem as the other insurance company may try to get reimbursement from you for the damages. Without insurance it is more difficult to work with the other company regarding fault. You may be better served to refuse to pay. If the insurance company wants to pursue it in small claims court you can present that you were both responsible and you could win.

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