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Auto Insurance Claims/At Fault Accident with no Payout and no other Drivers


Car Hit Snowbank
Car Hit Snowbank  

Location: Massachusetts
Insurance Company: Liberty Mutual

February, 2015 After a big snow storm I was driving and slipped on some black ice and lost control crashing my (non financed) car to the side of the road into a snow bank towards the guard rail. Since this car did no have collision insurance and no other motorists was in the accident and there was not even a police report or any payout of pocket from my insurance (not even tow fees, not one dollar was paid out THAT I KNOW), I ended up scrapping the car and since I know the tow truck companies owner, it was a friendly favor to junk the car for me. Cops arrived onscene but no report was ever made, which I went down to the police station to check myself and nothing was on books which was a day or so after.

Few days after the accident ,I found a new car which I am financing. So I called liberty mutual and I explained that I was in an accident with my previous car and wanted to make a claim to remove that car and replace it with my financed car. So I went on and explained that I lost control and crashed into the side of the road towards the snow bank, I said I want to add this car to replace this car. They complied, they said no problem I gave them the VIN number everything went that I thought well!

This past year my insurance went up  a lot so I was like why I'm heck is this going up when I have not even gotten a speeding ticket!? So I ended up switching to geico which my buddy speeks very fond of. So a week ago my insurance is going up again. I call geico and they explain to me that I have an at fault accident from a year ago, and that there was a pay out of $700 which I was never informed of. When I called Liberty mutual to ask them why my insurance was going up they told me it was due to parts of my car. I never received any surcharge notice or any other paper explaining that I caused any property damage to anything.

I have called Liberty mutual and they explained to me hat since I called to report my car was in an acids my that means it's automatically at fault, and basically ignored my request of trying to add another car to my insurance to replace my older damaged car. I don't understand what I'm supposed to do because ive been driving for 5 years now and paying $300. Please HELP!

ANSWER: Hi Zachary,

Even though you did not have collision coverage and no money was paid out, when you reported the collieion to Liberty Mutual it is recorded as an at fault event. It does not matter that they did not pay out any money. Any time you report something to an insurance company they will use it against you. It is unfortunate but that is the way it works. As far as I know there is nothing you can do about it because you did have a accident that damaged your car and it is considered to be your fault because no other vehicle was involved. You will have to pay the higher rate until the accident comes off your record usually in 3 years.

I hope this helps
Richard Hixenbaugh

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thank you for your response. When I called Geico regarding my insurance they explained to me that I have a at fault accident and explained the accident to them, what had happened and they explained to me that the at fault accident with no evidence supporting an accident or a $700 property damage fee. I have called the police departed and the report says vehicle hit snow bank. I never called to report an accident to begin with I called to change my Mitsubishi to my new Ford car that I switched over the day I called, which no documentation was transferred over no accident report was sent. This $700 property damage fee is ridiculous and Geico agreed and explained to me that errors have been made and told me to call Liberty Mutual and explain this situation. I don't see how I can be punished for an accident that could have happened on my property and yet I'm getting punished for it? They explained to me that this accident can be removed from my record especially with evidence I have produced and this miss understanding.

I tried calling in to change my car say that it lit a snow bang and they put me at an at fault? I mean that sounds fishy to me.

Hi Zachary,

You should call Liberty Mutual to see if you can get it corrected. However, keep in mind that they may still consider it to be an at fault event even if no money is paid out. You hit the snow bank for a reason, you lost control or were driving too fast for conditions. That's what makes it at fault not just if they paid out on a claim.

You may also need to contact the police to see why they made a report when you were told there was no report.

I wish you well.

Richard Hixenbaugh

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Richard Hixenbaugh


Auto insurance claims procedure, auto coverage, liability issues, auto damage questions, how to deal with the insurance company, loss of use and diminished value.


I have been involved in the insurance industry for over 25 years. I have experience in underwriting, sales, claims adjusting, auto damage estimating, auto value appraising and diminished value appraising. I have testified as an expert witness over 35 times.

Society of Certified Auto Appraisers

Completed all required courses for the Florida Property-Casualty agents license and the Florida claims adjusters license. I have attended various courses on auto damage estmating, vehicle appraising and am ASE certified in collision damage analysis.

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