Deer - Part 2

First, a liability-only insurance policy does not cover repairs to your vehicle.  Liability insurance is required by law and pays when the policyholder is legally responsible for another person' crash-related damage.  A vehicle owner with liabilty-only coverage pays out-of-pocket for all vehicle repairs.

Your policy must have physical damage protection to share deer-related repair expenses with an insurance company.  Physical damage is divided into two separate coverages - comprehensive and collision.  Both typically have deductibles.  A deer accident is covered as a comprehensive claim if there is evidence of direct contact with the deer.  Without this, the crash is a collision loss.

Policyholder responsibilities following a deer-hit or other physical damage loss:

  • Report the loss to the local agent or company representative as soon as possible if you have the appropriate coverage.
  • Check your deductible, as this is how much you pay out-of-pocket to repair the vehicle.  The comprehensive deductible applies if you hit the deer.  Otherwise the loss is a collision claim.
  • Cooperate with the claim adjuster's investigation.  Insurance adjusters are tasked with confirming insurance coverage applies to the loss, assessing damage, determining how the crash occurred, and authorizing a claim settlement.  Provide credible, detailed information to speed the process.