You see the light turn green and enter the intersection. Out of the corner of your eye you see a driver from the right, clearly not going to stop. You both try to avoid the collision, but too late.
No one’s hurt, luckily, but during the information exchange you learn that you both have the same insurance provider. What happens next?
Ideally – and in most cases – nothing is different when drivers have the same insurance company. In most cases, your insurance company will assign separate adjusters in order to avoid a conflict of interest. By law, these adjusters are required to treat the claim the same as any other.
The reality is that a few differences do exist when you have the same provider, however. If you were not at fault, for example, you do not have to worry about your deductible in most cases. Instead, to simplify the process, the company usually applies the at-fault driver’s policy to pay for your deductible.
In cases where fault isn’t clear, however, the company will wait until their investigation is complete in order to apply this benefit. If you are found not at-fault, you will usually be reimbursed for your deductible.
It’s a common belief that insurance claims made between the same company will be processed faster, but this usually doesn’t actually hold true. Adjusters must still communicate with each other and investigate the situation as with any other claim.
Risks and Challenges
In most cases your insurance company will handle the claim with as much good faith as they would with an external company.
That said, unethical practices are not unheard of in these situations. The most common complaints are simply a lack of communication. While this is bad service, it does not necessarily mean bad faith practice. Be persistent and keep in touch throughout the investigation to make sure your provider is handling the claim in a timely manner.
Much less common are cases of claim denials. These usually involve loopholes such as policy coverage or lapses. At the same time, these are not necessarily more likely when the company is the same for both drivers.
Be wary if your company assigns only one adjuster to the claim. In these cases there’s a very real risk of conflict of interest.
In most cases, you do not need to worry about having the same insurance company as the other driver. As with any insurance claim, patience and persistence are the most important factors to receiving compensation.
In the market for an insurance provider? Just looking to save more on your auto insurance policy? O’Quinn Insurance Services can help match you with the best policy for your needs. Get a quote today! (It’s free!)