Is Pothole Damage Covered by State, Town, or Insurance?

AAA reports that pothole damage accounts for around $3 billion a year in damages, accounting around 500,000 insurance claims per year,

Potholes happen mostly during the freeze/thaw winter months as water seeps into small cracks in the road and freezes. The cracks expand and contract, combined with heavy traffic, pavement age, vehicle weights, and snow plows, cracks become potholes.

Who’s Responsible for Pothole Damage?

Unfortunately, the responsibility for avoiding a pothole usually falls on the driver and in Massachusetts, it’s almost impossible to get the state or town to pay up for your pothole damage.

That’s because according to Massachusetts law MGL c.81, s.18 – Defects in Highway, Liability (State Roads) and MGL c.84, s.15 – Personal injuries or property damage from defective ways (City or Town Roads), you’ll need to prove that the state and/or town was negligent in repairing and maintaining road conditions.

But it’s going to be nearly impossible to prove that anyone knew about a pothole and failed to do anything about it.

While pothole damage claims to the state are usually denied, some towns and cities will reimburse.

If you have a pothole “encounter”, make sure you take a picture of the pothole and damage to your vehicle, then determine who is responsible for the road (town/city/state). Go online and find the procedures to file a claim. Remember to get estimates from local auto repair shops before submitting your claim for approval.

Invest some time and you could get reimbursed without paying an insurance deductible.

Check out the City of Boston’s pothole claim procedure.

Is Pothole Damage Covered by Insurance?

If you bought a road-hazard protection plan on your tires and/or wheels that’s great! Hop, skip, and jump back to where you bought it!

If not, your car insurance will usually recognize an immediate damage claim, but you’ll probably pay a deductible and watch your renewal increase.

Most pothole damage is wear and tear, with no specific incident to blame. So if your car doesn’t feel right, let’s check it out, we’re experts in smooth riding vehicles and have your best interests in mind.

Don’t mess around with the chain stores – When you need tires, look beyond the price. At Kenwood Tire & Auto Service, we make tires easy! We don’t just change tires, we change your tire buying experience. 

You’ll always find honest advice, good tiresquality service, plus the people and support you need to make your new tires a good investment.

Shop online or let us help you choose the right tire.


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