What To Do if You Hit a Parked Car

A man inspects his parked car after it's been hit.

Unfortunately, parked car accidents are all too common. The National Safety Council has reported that tens of thousands of car crashes occur on an annual basis within parking lots and garage structures, so it’s unsurprising that most drivers will inevitably deal with an accident causing damage to a parked car at some point.

If you are seeking legal advice regarding a parked car accident, reach out to Jack Bernstein, Injury Attorneys. Schedule a free consultation today.

What to do if you accidentally hit a parked car 

Though it may feel like a natural reaction to drive away, if you accidentally hit a parked car, it is crucial that you follow the proper protocol regarding this type of incident. After hitting a parked car, the driver must: 

  1. Stop driving 
  2. Attempt to locate the vehicle’s owner
  3. Leave a note for the driver on their vehicle
  4. Report the accident

What to do if you hit a parked car and there is no damage

If you’ve hit a parked car and there appears to be no damage on the surface, it’s still important to follow the aforementioned protocol in the event that there has been some type of internal, non-visible damage. Non-visible damage may include damage to the vehicle frame, suspension, or another expensive vehicle feature.

What to do if you lightly hit a parked car

Despite how lightly you may have hit the parked car, it is still essential to follow the proper protocol following this type of incident. As mentioned above, even if there is no visible damage, the driver must abide by the necessary steps to avoid any conflict or issues for the owner of the parked vehicle. Even though you may have lightly hit the car, it is still possible for the vehicle to have sustained internal or external damage that needs to be properly addressed. 

Schedule a free consultation with the experienced parked car accident lawyers at Jack Bernstein, Injury Attorneys, to discuss your legal options today.

If you hit a parked car and are unable to find the owner, what should you do?

If you hit a parked car and are unable to find the owner of the vehicle, you must leave a note for the owner. The best place to leave this note is on the windshield, placed just under the windshield wipers so that it doesn’t blow away. On this note, you should explain to the vehicle owner what happened and leave your contact information so they may call you to discuss the next steps involving auto repairs and insurance policies.

Someone hit my parked car; what should I do?

What happens when you return to your parked car to find out that it has clearly been hit by another driver? What do you do? In the moment, it may be tempting to accept that you will be unable to find the culprit and will have to pay for the auto repairs on your own; however, that may not always be the case.

Despite this being a frustrating experience, it’s important to remain calm in the event someone hits your parked car. Once you have noted that damage has occurred, you can follow these ten steps regarding what to do if someone hits your parked car

  1. Leave the vehicle where it is, don’t move it right away
  2. Contact the police
  3. Locate the driver
  4. Determine the cause
  5. Take photos of the damage
  6. Report the accident and ask for video footage
  7. Find witnesses
  8. Contact your insurance company
  9. Make a claim through the other driver’s insurance policy
  10. Contact a car accident lawyer

What is the benefit of retaining a car accident lawyer?

The focus is on a car accident lawyer, working on a case after a client hit a parked car. They're at their desk with paperwork, in front of a laptop. On their desk is a gavel, a statue of Lady Justice, car keys on a stack of money, books, and a toy car.

Whether you are the driver who caused the damage to the parked vehicle or are the owner of the parked vehicle, there are plenty of benefits to retaining a car accident lawyer. An experienced car accident lawyer will be able to walk you through the process of an accident lawsuit and help you determine any damages. They will be there every step of the way, from the initial summons and complaint, through the discovery process, all the way to reaching a settlement or taking the case to trial if necessary. 

Having a renowned car accident attorney can have a significant impact on the outcome of your car accident case. The Miami car accident lawyers at Jack Bernstein, Injury Lawyers have extensive expertise in the area of parked car accidents and will be an essential resource for you should you find yourself dealing with a parked car accident of your own. 

If you hit a parked vehicle and are unsure what your next steps should be, contact Jack Bernstein, Injury Attorneys, to discuss the incident and your potential liabilities. Schedule a free consultation today.


Discovery Process in Litigation. (2022).

Distraction Can Often Cause Parking Lot Injuries. (2023).

Goguen, D. (2023). What Happens If I Hit a Parked Car?

The information contained herein is intended for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. Seek competent legal counsel for advice on any legal matter.

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