You were involved in a collision caused by another person’s carelessness, and you want to know, “Why is your insurance paying the bills when the other driver’s insurance company should be paying them”? Well, the reason is simple: If you have full coverage, typically submitting the claim to your own insurance company is going to allow them to pay for your car, and then they will seek reimbursement for what they pay on your car from the other driver’s insurance company. This is done through a process called subrogation. But, what it really means is that your insurance company will take care of your harms and losses, and then they will seek reimbursement from the other driver’s insurance company for the amount that they’ve paid. It also works with your medical payments coverage.
Oftentimes, your own insurance will start paying your medical bills because the other driver’s policy will not pay them until the medical treatment has been concluded. You want to know, “Why is my insurance company paying my medical bills, and why isn’t the other driver’s paying them instead?” Well, the answer is, there’s no fault involved when you are having your insurance company pay your medical bills. They’re paying the bills for you as they’re incurred, as opposed to waiting until all of your treatment is done and reimbursing you for them.
Another question I get when your own insurance company pays is, “Will my rates go up” or “How will this affect my rates?” In California, rates do not go up when the collision is not your fault. Insurance companies are free to do as they choose, but typically, when the crash is not your fault your rates will not go up, and the point will go against the driver that was at fault.