Scratch And Dent Car Insurance

Scratch and dent car insurance is available with most car insurance companies. In most cases, scratch and dent insurance coverage is included under a comprehensive car insurance policy. There are also specialty plans that only cover cosmetic issues on your vehicle. Those are called car care plans for scratch and dent auto insurance. However, it may or may not be worth filing a claim, depending on the cost of repairs versus your deductible.

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Tonya Sisler has a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of South Carolina in Journalism and has worked for 15+ years in management. She has also completed a proofreading certification and is currently a professional writer.

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Brad Larson has been in the insurance industry for more than a dozen years. He started out as a claims adjuster for a national carrier. He has since switched to the agency side of the business. Brad is licensed in all P&C lines.

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Reviewed by Brad Larsen
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Oct 22, 2020

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Car Insurance Scratch Claims Summary
Car Scratch Insurance Claim FactsFrom the Experts...
A scratch on your vehicle can cost between up to $3,500 to repairScratch Wizard, Angie's List
Depending on your deductible (which could range anywhere between $250 and $2,500), it may or may not be worth filing a claim for the cost to repair the scratchNAIC, III
Scratches will typically be covered by Comprehensive insurance, which costs an average of an additional $222.86/year on your policyNAIC
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If you’ve ever had that frustrating experience of seeing a scratch somehow appear on your car, you may be wondering, can I claim insurance for car scratches? Does a scratch fall into the category of when not to make a claim on car insurance? Or is it a good idea to involve insurance? Can I get scratches off of a car?

Most car insurance companies offer new scratch and dent car insurance coverage, but it’s a matter of weighing the pros and cons of whether it’s worth claiming a scratch or dent.

Read through this article to learn more about car scratches, whether or not it makes sense to file a claim for repairs, and more. Want to make sure you have the coverage you need to file a claim for a scratch on your vehicle? Use your ZIP code to get a free quote today.

Car Scratches and Dents and Claiming Insurance

Want to know if insurance applies to car scratches, and if so, how to claim car insurance? If you’re asking, how did my car get scratched? And does this affect how insurance applies? The answer is yes. Keep reading to learn more about the best car scratch and dent insurance.

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Does insurance cover car scratches?

Can we claim insurance for car scratches? Car scratch insurance is not a specific coverage you can purchase. Still, in most cases, car scratches will be covered by your full, comprehensive, or collision coverage, depending on how the scratch occurred.

In the case of the scratch occurring as the result of a car accident, your collision coverage will apply. Take a look at this video to learn more about collision coverage.

If the scratch occurs as the result of weather damage, vandalism, etc., your comprehensive coverage may apply. Take a look at this video to learn more about comprehensive coverage.

If someone left you a note after scratching your car, you might be able to file a claim to cover the cost of your car scratch and dent repair. However, if someone scratched your car and drove off, you’ll have to go through your insurance to file a claim. So how much might this coverage cost you? Take a look at this table, populated with average annual rates from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners for drivers across the country.

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If the individual who damaged your vehicle is uninsured, you’ll also need to use your coverage, though in that case, uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage would apply. What is uninsured motorist coverage? Watch this video to learn more.

It may be worth considering purchasing uninsured/underinsured coverage in addition to full coverage (the combination of collision and comprehensive coverage) if it’s not already required by your state (states like Connecticut require uninsured motorist coverage as a part of the minimum liability requirement to drive legally) because according to the Insurance Information Institute, an average of 13 percent of drivers on the road are uninsured.

How much does it cost to fix car scratches?

Car scratch repair costs vary based on several factors. The average cost of a scratch repair is $630, but depending on your vehicle, the severity of the scratch, the extent of the paint job, etc. costs can range anywhere between $300 and $3,500.

While a minor repair may be affordable, if you need more in-depth work (which can even include an entire new paint job), the cost can be prohibitive, in which case your insurance coverage is particularly essential.

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What are the disadvantages of claiming car insurance for a scratch?

If you do choose to claim car insurance for car scratches, there may be a few disadvantages to consider. If you’re at-fault for the damage, your insurance rates may increase. Even if you’re not at fault, it may not make financial sense to file an insurance claim.

Your car insurance deductible is key in determining your deductible. What is a car insurance deductible in term of car insurance and how does it apply to car scratch repair? Essentially, a deductible is the amount of money you’re required to pay for damages, before your insurance kicks in to cover the rest.

So when it comes to repairs for scratches on your car, if the cost of repair is higher than or equal to the cost of repairs, it may make more sense to pay for the repairs out-of-pocket, rather than filing an insurance claim. Additionally, filing a claim for a scratch on your car may disqualify you from a zero-claims discount.

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Filing a Claim for a Scratch on Your Car: The Bottom Line

Full coverage auto insurance covers most scratches to your vehicle. However, it may or may not be worth filing a claim, depending on the cost of repairs versus your deductible.

We suggest you obtain a couple of quotes for repairs before deciding how you wish to proceed.

Additionally, if you’re at-fault for a scratch on someone else’s car, filing a claim (or having a claim filed against you) may increase your rates.

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Frequently Asked Questions: Filing a Claim for Car Scratch Repair

Still, have questions about filing a claim for scratch repair? Read through these frequently asked questions to learn more.

How do you cover up scratches on a car?

You can pay a body shop to repair the scratches on your car. If the damage is minor, you may also be able to cover it up with a scratch repair kit you can purchase.

What happens if I scratched someone’s car by accident?

If you scratch a car by accident, you’ll need to make your best effort to find the owner of the vehicle. If you can’t find them, you’ll need to leave a note with your contact information and a brief explanation.

You may need to report the incident to the police (this depends on where you live and the severity of the damage; in Florida, for example, any incident with damages that exceed $500 must be reported), and you’ll need to give your insurance company a call.

Will my insurance go up if I scratch a car?

When you’re at-fault for any kind of vehicle accident (which technically includes scratches, if the damage was caused by your vehicle), your insurance rates may increase. Even one accident can cause an increase of an average of 32 percent.

Take a look at this table, populated with average annual rates across the country (pulled from Quadrant Information Services), to see what we mean.

Average Annual Car Insurance Rates by Driving History
CompaniesAverage Annual Insurance Rates with a Clean Driving RecordAverage Annual Insurance Rates with One Accident
USAA$1,933.68$2,516.24
Geico$2,145.96$3,192.77
American Family$2,693.61$3,722.75
Nationwide$2,746.18$3,396.95
State Farm$2,821.18$3,396.01
Progressive$3,393.09$4,777.04
Travelers$3,447.69$4,289.74
Farmers$3,460.60$4,518.73
Allstate$3,819.90$4,987.68
Liberty Mutual$4,774.30$6,204.78
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As you can see, while the increases vary, every insurance company raises rates for an auto accident.

Before you go, make sure you have the right coverage for when your car gets scratched by using your ZIP code to get a free quote on car insurance

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