If someone were to vandalize your car, then you are the person who might have to bear the brunt of the repair costs. One part of the vehicle that is likely going to need significant repairs is any damaged window glass. After all, you cannot drive with broken windows because they will limit your field of vision. The good news is that your auto insurance can offer benefits to cover this damage.
However, auto insurance might not automatically cover window glass breakage. Therefore, you must ensure that your policy contains appropriate benefits, first. Additionally, you must be able to verify the veracity of your claim that damage was caused by vandalism.
Reacting to Glass Damage
When you notice vehicle glass damage, and have a reason to suspect that someone vandalized your car, then the first thing to do is to call the police. You should not try to open the car doors or clean up any damage until they arrive.
Rather, wait for the police to arrive and document the incident. They will need to collect evidence (Dust for fingerprints, etc.) and possibly take photos of the vehicle damage. They will also write a report, which can be used as proof for your insurer that the vandalism or other damage was not your fault. Keep the police report and the responding officer’s contact information on file.
After you have finished with the police, contact your auto insurance provider. They will ask you about the incident, and might ask you to provide the police report, photos of the scene and other documentary information to substantiate your claim. Sometimes, insurance representatives will even come to your home to inspect the vehicle in person.
Coverage Questions Answered
Once you have reported vandalism (sometimes called partial theft) to your insurer, they will be able to start a claim on your auto policy for the damage. However, you must have a particular type of coverage—comprehensive coverage—in order to qualify for an insurance settlement.
Comprehensive coverage is designed to cover damage to your vehicle that was not related to a collision. It might cover storm damage, fire damage, and yes, damage from vandalism or vehicle theft. Deductibles and your overall coverage limits will apply to comprehensive insurance claims, so you might not receive a settlement that is worth 100% of the costs of glass repair.
Additionally, some auto insurers cover glass under a specific benefit called windshield or glass breakage insurance. While this coverage is essentially the same as comprehensive insurance and other physical damage insurance, it simply covers glass damage under different terms, which often make it a bit easier for policyholders to file claims.
After you have repaired damage to your vehicle, consider what you can do to protect your vehicle from vandalism in the future. An alarm system, cameras and other resources can help you keep the vehicle secure.