After a collision, it’s typical for car insurance rates to increase. How much your car insurance will go up after an accident depends on several factors, including your driving record, claims history, insurance provider, location, age, and gender. Each of these factors could cause your auto insurance rates to rise or fall.
Generally, auto insurance rates increase after a car crash because they view the driver as riskier to insure. As a result, some insurance companies could raise their rates by 50 percent or more after an at-fault crash. Speak to a car accident attorney following a crash. They can also prove you didn’t cause the crash if you were not at fault and can help you recover damages for your injuries.
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Factors That Influence How Much Car Insurance Goes up After an Accident
Several factors can influence how much your car insurance goes up after an accident.
Some of the most common factors include your:
- Driving record
- Claims history
- The insurance provider you choose
Any of these factors could make your insurance premium increase or decrease. Depending on how these factors impact you, you might have to pay higher insurance premiums after a crash. By understanding the factors that influence how much you pay for auto insurance, you could take the necessary steps to lower your rate.
Your driving record typically has a major impact on your premiums. Auto insurance companies sometimes refuse to offer coverage if the driver’s record has several violations or collisions. On the other hand, by having a clean driving record (such as no collisions or moving violations), you could have lower premium payments.
Certain issues on your driving record could increase your insurance rates:
- A speeding ticket could increase your insurance rates by over 25 percent
- An at-fault accident could increase your insurance rates by over 45 percent
- Driving under the influence (DUI) of drugs or alcohol could increase your insurance rates by over 100 percent
- A reckless driving ticket could increase your insurance rates by over 90 percent
Having more than one accident on your record can also increase your insurance rates significantly.
When you make a claim through your auto insurance policy, your insurance provider has to pay for those damages. In return, they could increase your insurance rates.
Policyholders typically have to file claims when they cause a car crash. Therefore, insurers look at your claims history when determining your premium price. If you have a lot of claims, that could indicate you are a riskier driver and the riskier of a driver you are, the more your premium could cost.
Another issue insurance companies will consider when they look at someone’s insurance history are any gaps in coverage. A gap in coverage could indicate that a driver struggles to pay their premiums on time. If the insurance company believes someone might not pay their insurance premium, they could refuse services to them or make them pay a higher rate.
Every auto insurance company has its own set of policies that determine how much a driver’s rates go up after a collision. It’s very likely most auto insurance companies will raise rates after a car crash. In some cases, the company could deny you coverage altogether.
After getting into a collision, your premium could rise significantly. It’s helpful to shop around with other companies to see if you can find a lower rate elsewhere.
Location can also be a factor in how much you pay for car insurance after a collision or in general. People who live in big cities, where more thefts and collisions could occur, typically pay higher premiums than those who live in rural areas. Because of the increase in traffic in more populated areas, car insurance companies see this as a higher opportunity for more accidents.
Another factor that insurance companies consider is when drivers live in high-traffic areas. Typically, there are more uninsured drivers on the road in these places. The busier the traffic is, the higher your chance of getting into a collision with an uninsured driver. Even if you didn’t cause the collision, your insurance company might still have to pay for some of the damage. Therefore, they could charge you higher premiums.
Driver’s Age and Gender
Many states allow insurance companies to factor in age and gender when creating insurance rates. Female drivers typically pay less for auto insurance premiums than male drivers. Male drivers, especially those aged under 23, are often viewed as riskier drivers. Men also tend to drive more than women and drive more expensive vehicles.
How Long an Accident Stays on Your Record
Insurance providers can usually see a collision on someone’s record for 3-5 years when determining their rates. Sometimes they can see a car crash from up to 10 years ago, although they usually won’t factor later accidents into your rate. Each state has different policies regarding how long a collision stays on someone’s record.
Typically, you can find your state’s policies on how long a car crash stays on your record through your local Department of Motor Vehicles website.
Some Insurance Companies Offer Accident Forgiveness
Accident forgiveness prevents your auto insurance rate from increasing after a car crash. Each insurance company has different policies regarding accident forgiveness.
Other ways to reward their customers for avoiding collisions include:
- Providing a discount on their insurance premium as a reward for good driving
- Waiving a rate increase after the first accident
Depending on their policies, your insurance company could provide accident forgiveness. If they do, your car insurance rate won’t necessarily increase after the first collision. However, without accident forgiveness, you should expect your car insurance rate to increase after a collision.
How to Lower Car Insurance Rates After a Collision
After getting into a car crash, you might notice an increase in your auto insurance premium. As soon as you receive a higher bill, you might wonder if you can do anything to lower your higher insurance rate.
Thankfully, you can:
- Shop around
- Reduce your coverage
- See if you qualify for discounts
- Avoid additional collisions
- Increase your deductible
If your insurance premium has risen significantly because of your collision, it could help to shop around and look at other insurance providers. See if you can find a cheaper rate while still receiving similar coverage.
By shopping around to find out what other insurers charge for auto insurance, you could save yourself a significant amount of money. It’s difficult to see your insurance rates increase after a collision, but you might not have to pay as much more by switching providers after a car crash.
Reduce Your Coverage
When your insurance rates rise after a collision, you should look at your policy to find out if there are any areas where you could reduce your coverage. For example, perhaps you have more coverage than needed and could benefit from reducing your coverage limits. By reducing your coverage, you could lower your premiums.
See If You Qualify For Discounts
Some insurance companies offer discounts to their customers for various reasons. By seeing if you qualify for discounts, you could avoid having your car insurance premiums go up after a car crash.
There are several discounts that some auto insurance companies offer, including:
- Bundles: If you bundle your auto insurance with other insurance, such as life or home insurance, you could get a discount.
- Good driving record: After the car crash, if you keep a clean record for a few years, you could begin receiving discounts for safe driving.
- Student: If you or your child are full-time students, ask if your auto insurance company offers a discount for good grades.
- Driving course: Taking a defensive driving or driver’s education course could provide you with the opportunity to get a discount. Taking courses like these shows the insurance company that you have improved your driving skills and are less risky to insure.
Seeing if you qualify for discounts could lower your insurance premium significantly after getting in a car crash meaning that you might not have such a significant price increase if the collision caused your auto insurance rates to rise.
Avoid Additional Collisions
To lower your auto insurance premiums in the future after a collision, it’s crucial to avoid getting into another car crash. By having two collisions on your driving record in a short time, you will likely have difficulty with your insurance provider.
If you avoid collisions for a few years, you could receive a good driver discount and get back to paying a lower premium. After a few years, the insurance company may no longer take the collision into account when determining your new rate.
Increase Your Deductible
When someone gets into a car accident, they pay the deductible. A car insurance deductible is the amount of money deducted when you file a claim under your insurance policy. If your car (or someone else’s car) sustains damage in a collision that you caused, you pay the deductible, and your insurer covers the rest of the costs.
By increasing your deductible, your insurance company will pay less money in the event of an insurance claim. Therefore, you could get a lower insurance rate if you increase your deductible.
Contact an attorney if you have been injured in a car accident. If so, you could recover compensation for:
- Medical bills
- Future medical bills
- Lost income
- Future lost income
- Property damage
A top-rated Long Island personal injury law firm‘s attorney can represent you through the entirety of your case and help get you the compensation you deserve for your injuries.