Ask Anne Marie: A Tree Fell on My Car While Parked at a Friend's House. I Filed a Claim for It. Do I Have to Pay the Deductible?

Each week, we highlight a question sent to our resident insurance expert, Anne Marie Thomas. This week’s question comes from Harry, who had to file a claim with his auto insurance provider after his vehicle was damaged while it was parked at a friend’s residence.

Harry asks: “A big, dead tree fell on the passenger side of my car while it was parked at the front of my friend’s house. I filed a claim for the damage it caused, but the insurer says that I have to pay the $1,000 deductible before they will pay my claim. This incident is not my fault. Do I have to pay the $1,000 deductible?”

Whenever you file any type of auto claim with your insurer, there is an amount known as the deductible that you are required to pay upfront before an insurance company will honour that claim. When purchasing or renewing an auto policy, you have the option of choosing the amount of the deductibles for the different coverages you have. The key to selecting a deductible is choosing the amount you know you can afford. These typically range between $500 and $1,000. In general, the higher your deductible, the lower your premium and vice-versa.

Anne Marie explains: “A tree falling on your car would be paid out under the comprehensive section of your auto insurance policy. Yes, you will have to pay the deductible for any comprehensive-related claims.”

Before purchasing or renewing a car insurance policy, take a few minutes to compare policies and premiums to ensure you’re getting the lowest price for the coverage you need.