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What if you don't know whether you bumped into person's car or not at low speed and then that individual drove away?

Chicago, IL |

What are you to do if you're unsure about whether you braked in time before slowly and possibly bumping into an individual's back bumper and that person drove away with no inclination of letting you know if that person's car was bumped or not? Basically you don't know whether you bumped into the back of that person's car, and you don't know if a police report is/was/should be filed. You assume that you stopped "on time." No damage shows on the front of your car.

Attorney Answers 6

Posted

Sounds lijke you are OK. Let it go.

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Posted

Report it to police and to your insurance carrier.

That way, you've complied with the law and your insurance policy.

This answer posted on Avvo is for informational and educational purposes only. There is no attorney-client relationship created or formed and you should not rely on this as legal advice. The suggestion is made that if you wish to protect your rights, you consult with an attorney immediately.

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Asker

Posted

What considerations need to be taken when letting the police/insurance company know about a potential, "unsure" accident? Can they arrest you?

Stephen Laurence Hoffman

Stephen Laurence Hoffman

Posted

Generally, the police only arrest people who fail to report serious incidents. If it's a "I didn't think I hit a car" situation, make it right by reporting it asap and move on. Make sure you let your carrier know too, so they are on notice.

Posted

It sounds like you think that you bumped the vehicle. There is probably not much that you can do except put your insurance company on notice and explain the facts to them.

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1 comment

Asker

Posted

Do you only file a police report if you know for sure private/public property was damaged and there was an injury?

Posted

Put you insurance company on notice of the incident.

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Asker

Posted

If you let your insurance company know and nothing comes of the incident, do your insurance rates have the potential to rise? Do you have to let them know even if you are unsure that the incident really occurred?

Posted

Best to be conservative so that this can it come back to haunt you. Make a report to the police and notify your insurance carrier. If you fail to do so and the other driver does report it to the police, you will have legal issues. If you don't report it to your insurer and a claim is later made, the insurer may decline coverage because of a lack of notice.

Mr. Padove is licensed to practice law in Illinois and Indiana and is located in Highland, Indiana serving the Chicagoland area to Indianapolis. The response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that, if known, could significantly change the reply and make it unsuitable. Mr. Padove strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in your state in order to ensure proper advice is received. If this information has been helpful, please indicate below.

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Posted

Sounds like you either imagined it, or you lightly kissed the bumper. Put it behind you and move on with your life.

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