Will my car insurance cover a broken baby seat?

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In a nutshell...
  • If your vehicle is involved in an accident, you must carry first-party insurance in order to pay for the damage
  • Collision coverage pays for damage caused by an impact between your vehicle and another person
  • Comprehensive coverage pays for other kinds of damage caused to your vehicle due to weather, vandalism, animals and other non-collision situations

Parents know that infant car seats are an expensive investment. A good car seat keeps your infant safe and secure, providing peace of mind that your child will be safe in the event of a car accident.

If you are involved in a motor vehicle collision and your baby seat is damaged, you may be wondering if the car seat is covered under your car insurance.

Depending upon the loss facts of the particular accident, the coverage that applies will change. Essentially, whatever coverage pays for the damage to your car will also pay to replace your damaged child car seat.

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Collision and Comprehensive Coverage

If your vehicle is involved in an accident, you must carry first-party insurance in order to pay for the damage.

Basic liability coverage pays for damage to other people’s damage that you cause, but will not cover your own vehicle in the event of an accident.

Collision coverage pays for damage caused by an impact between your vehicle and another person, property or vehicle. A collision can be your fault, such as if you hit a fixed object or rear-end another vehicle.

It can also be the fault of another person, such as if you are rear-ended or your car is hit while parked. Regardless of who is at fault for the accident, your collision coverage will pay for the damage to your vehicle.

Comprehensive coverage pays for other kinds of damage caused to your vehicle due to weather, vandalism, animals and other non-collision situations.

Usually, the deductible for comprehensive coverage will be lower than the collision deductible, although this is not always true.

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Child Car Seats and Insurance

If your car seat is damaged due to a motor vehicle accident, your insurance company will be required to pay for a replacement of like kind and quality to the kind that was damaged.

Additionally, if your car seat is in use at the time of impact, it may still need to be replaced even if there is no visible damage.

In some cases, the strain of an impact can cause the seatbelt attachment to be weakened and the car seat may not work properly in the future.

You may also bring your damaged car seat to the inspection when your insurance companies do an estimate on your damaged automobile.

The adjuster will be able to determine if the car seat is damaged and may be able to write an estimate for it at the inspection.

How to File a Claim for a Car Seat

Whenever you file an insurance claim for your damaged vehicle, you can mention to your agent or claims service representative that you had a car seat in use in your vehicle that sustained damage due to the impact.

They will make note of this and can explain exactly how your coverage will apply to the replacement of the seat.

In other cases, if you still have the receipt for your original car seat, you can submit that receipt and be paid for it directly. If the car seat you had previously is no longer being made, you can select a car seat of a similar kind and quality to the model you had.

If your vehicle does not sustain much damage but your car seat is damaged from impact, you may not be able to recover the replacement of the car seat.

In order to receive payment for your car seat’s replacement, you must have already met the deductible amount on your claim.

This means that if you have a $1,000 deductible on your policy, you must have over $1,000 in damage to your vehicle and agree to pay that amount; any costs over that amount, including damage to your car seat, will be paid by your insurance company.

You can give the car seat to your damage adjuster at the vehicle inspection, or you can turn it in at the fire department or daycare facility.

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