Can You Cancel a Car Insurance Claim?

Filing an insurance claim is usually at the top of the list after we get into an accident, but there are times when it might not be the best choice. Fortunately, you can cancel a car insurance claim in most situations. The only exceptions are when you’re at fault or if someone filed a liability claim against you.

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Last Updated: 8/27/2022
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Let’s say your car sustains damage from a falling branch. You immediately file a claim, so your policy helps cover repair costs. However, your estimates turn out lower than you expected. Can you cancel a car insurance claim?

Yes, you can. In most cases, you can cancel a claim after filing it. And the process isn’t complicated. You can simply contact your insurer and inform them you’re not pursuing your claim.

However, you cannot cancel your claim if you were at fault in an accident. You also can’t cancel one that another driver filed against you.

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Key Takeaways

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You can cancel an insurance claim after filing it. You can even do this after your insurer has issued you a check, as long as you haven’t cashed it.

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If you’re at fault, you can cancel the claim for the damages your vehicle sustained, but not the one the other driver filed.

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There are several reasons policyholders may decide to cancel claims after filing them. These include not being able to pay the deductible or avoiding higher premiums.

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Can You Cancel Car Insurance Claims After Filing?

Yes, you can generally cancel a car insurance claim after filing it. It’s best to do it sooner rather than later. For example, canceling a claim during an investigation is better because the insurer hasn't made a determination on payment yet.

You can still cancel your claim after your provider issues you a check if you haven’t cashed it. You’ll need to mail the payment back to complete the cancellation.

However, you cannot cancel the claim if you’re at fault in an accident and the other driver files a liability claim against you.

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Although it’s better to decide whether you want to cancel a car insurance claim early, sometimes you only realize you want to do so after receiving your check. Fortunately, canceling is still possible if you haven’t cashed the check yet.

Can You Cancel a Total Loss Claim?

You can cancel a car insurance claim in most situations. These include when your car is considered a total loss after an accident or due to other types of damage. You shouldn't encounter challenges if you decide you don't want to pursue the claim anymore.

Why You Might Want to Cancel Your Auto Insurance Claim

A car insurance policy ensures you’re protected on the road and can help cover damages after a covered incident. However, there are several reasons why you may choose to cancel an insurance claim after filing it.

1

The difference between your deductible and repair costs is negligible.

You’ll have to pay a deductible each time you file a claim before your policy begins covering your expenses. Let’s say your deductible is $500, and your total repair cost is $525, which means your policy would only cover $25. If your deductible costs nearly as much as your repairs, you might be better off paying everything out of pocket.

2

You can’t afford your deductible right now.

Policyholders typically choose a higher deductible because it results in a lower premium. However, your financial situation may not be ideal when your vehicle is damaged. Your repairs may be delayed if you can’t pay your deductible. You might choose to cancel your claim and deal with the repairs later.

3

You’re trying to avoid a rate increase.

Filing a claim means insurers could consider you riskier to insure and may result in a higher premium when you renew your policy. Canceling a claim won’t prevent an incident from showing up on your driving record, but it won’t change your risk profile, so your rates won’t be affected.

4

Paying for repairs out of pocket is more affordable.

Sometimes, your repair costs turn out to be cheap. If they’re lower than your deductible, you might want to pay for everything out of pocket and cancel your claim.

5

You currently qualify for a safe driver discount.

Most insurers offer discounts to drivers who remain claim-free. For example, GEICO offers up to a 22% discount if you don’t file claims for five consecutive years. If you pursue your claim, you won’t qualify for it anymore.

How to Cancel Your Auto Insurance Claim

The process of how to cancel an auto insurance claim isn’t complicated. You can contact your car insurance representative and let them know you want to discontinue the claim. Doing so saves your insurer from covering the cost of your damages, which works in their favor, too.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Canceling Car Insurance Claims

There may be some confusion about how to cancel a claim, so we’ve gathered the most commonly asked questions to help you navigate the process.

About the Author


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Mark Fitzpatrick is a senior content manager with MoneyGeek specializing in insurance. Mark has years of experience analyzing the insurance market and creating original research and content. He graduated from Boston College with a Bachelor of Arts and Johns Hopkins University with a Master of Arts.


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