Sara Routhier, Managing Editor and Outreach Director, has professional experience as an educator, SEO specialist, and content marketer. She has over five years of experience in the insurance industry. As a researcher, data nerd, writer, and editor she strives to curate educational, enlightening articles that provide you with the must-know facts and best-kept secrets within the overwhelming world o...

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Joel Ohman is the CEO of a private equity-backed digital media company. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, author, angel investor, and serial entrepreneur who loves creating new things, whether books or businesses. He has also previously served as the founder and resident CFP® of a national insurance agency, Real Time Health Quotes. He also has an MBA from the University of South Florida. ...

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Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder, CFP®

UPDATED: Nov 21, 2012

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Parking-related insurance claims increase on Black Friday according to Progressive Insurance data. 

Claims increase 36.5 percent when compared to Friday reports from two weeks before and after. Additionally, parking-related insurance claims doubled from 2010 to 2011.

Nearly one quarter of Black Friday accident reports occurred in parking situations. 

The claims are separated into the following categories:

  • Rear-ending accidents account for 12.57 percent of Progressive Insurance claims
  • Accidents to parked cars total 11.13 percent of claims
  • Backing into another car or having your car backed into accounts for 7.68 percent of claims

Progressive said that preventative measures should be taken.

“Protecting your car can be as easy as parking it a little further back in the parking lot, away from the commotion of the store,” Maria Cashy, claims customer service process leader at Progressive said. “That extra one-hundred feet could save your car some serious damage.”

But personal safety should always trump potential insurance costs.

“Of course if it’s dark outside, park wherever you feel safest, like a well-lit area,” Cashy said.

A major reason for preventing parking-related accidents is due to the added strain they cause on auto loans, among other reasons. If an auto loan borrower is still making payments, then the owner will have to pay for insurance repairs on top of the monthly auto loan payments. Additionally, an accident can cause a major depreciation in the value of an automobile.

An insurance claim increase can be prevented with simple measures.

Nationwide suggests avoiding speeding, expecting the unexpected, watching for pedestrians and exerting caution when backing out of parking spots.

“Be mindful of other drivers,” Bill Windsor, Associate Vice President of Consumer Safety at Nationwide said. “Crowded parking lots are fertile ground for fender benders…Please drive defensively.”

Whether a driver is exerting caution to help avoid auto loan issues, or to protect valuable family cargo, the allure of a Black Friday deal should never rise above safety.

“Don’t suspend your good judgment in the rush to shop,” Windsor said.