How much does car insurance increase after an accident? After a car accident, it might not be the first thing on your mind. However, it’s an important consideration as you move forward in life.
How Much Does Insurance Go Up After an Accident?
Typically, car insurance rates increase following an accident. An analysis of insurance rates across the United States shows that the national average rate for drivers with one wreck on their record is $2,212 each year.
That is about $665 higher in annual cost over the average rate of $1,547 for someone with a clean record.
Generally speaking, numerous factors affect your car insurance rates.
- Type of vehicle
- Insurance score
A range of other factors come into play, and your driving history is just one aspect of this equation. Moreover, rates after an accident vary quite a bit from one insurance agency to another.
How Long Does an Accident Stay On Your Driving Record?
So, “How much does insurance increase after an accident” doesn’t have a universal answer. However, there’s more to consider.
The number of traffic tickets and accidents on your record impacts your rate. As that number goes up, your insurance rate is likely to follow. If a company considers you a “high-risk driver,” they believe you are more likely to file an insurance claim for an incident. The higher the risk, the higher your rate.
On average, the increase in a full coverage premium after an at-fault accident is around 42 percent. In some cases, the insurer may also deny renewal after your policy expires.
Common reasons behind this:
- Accidents that injured others
- Extensive property damage
- Driving under the influence or while intoxicated
These result in some of the most extreme rate cases, if not a denial.
Typically, insurance agencies keep accidents and tickets on your record for 3 – 5 years. However, this varies according to your carrier, state, and the severity of the incident.
After an at-fault accident, virtually ever insurer will raise your rates. However, that amount will differ widely between companies.
How to Reduce Rate Increases After An Accident
After a car accident, it’s normal to want to find a way to lower your premium. Luckily, insurance companies offer a variety of discounts, loss control measures, and accident forgiveness programs. Depending on your carrier, you may be eligible for a mix of the below options.
- Bundling policies: If you have multiple policies, insurers tend to offer a discount for bundling them into a single product.
- Defense driver: In some states, you can earn a discount if you complete a defensive driving course.
- Telematics discounts: This involves an app that monitors your driving. Based on your safe driving skills, it’s possible to lower your rate.
- Multi-car discounts: If you have more than one car, insuring them through the same company can help you save on rates.
- Safe vehicle discounts: Many companies offer a discount for vehicles equipped with safety features.
- Online quote discounts: If you purchase your policy online, some insurance companies offer a discount.
- Driver affiliations: Certain occupations receive discounts, such as first responders, government workers, or military members. Additionally, some offer discounts to specific membership groups.
- Payment discounts: If you pay your premium in full, online, or sign up for automatic payments, it can save you some money.
- Electric/hybrid vehicles: In some cases, insurers offer discounts for environmentally friendly vehicles.
What If I’m Not At Fault In the Accident?
If someone else causes the accident, do you still have to pay more? Unfortunately, this is possible in certain cases. If you file a claim against your own insurance policy, they may increase your rates.
It may be a smaller increase if you weren’t the one who caused the accident. However, the common practice for insurance companies is to increase rates. This is especially true if you have multiple claims in a set amount of time, such as within 3-5 years.
Luckily, if someone else causes the accident, you can work with a personal injury lawyer to ensure the negligent driver’s insurance company covers the damage. This helps to reduce the rise in your premium moving forward.
What Is Accident Forgiveness?
Many insurance companies offer some form of accident forgiveness program. If you qualify, it means that they do not raise your rates after your first accident. Generally, insurers require that you were accident-free for a certain number of years to add this to your policy.
Additionally, younger drivers may face other requirements. Moreover, those requirements may apply to all the drivers on your policy.
Usually, you have to pay extra for this program. However, some companies offer it as a free perk to a driver with a clean driving record if they are with the company for a specific amount of time.
Every insurer has its own policies, so it’s a good idea to talk to your agent about what the company offers, how much it costs, and whether you qualify. Unfortunately, even when a company does have this policy, it may not provide it to policyholders in every state.
Let An Experienced Attorney Handle the Insurance Company
So, how much does insurance increase after an accident? Unfortunately, there’s not a simple answer. However, injured victims of car accidents in Texas have the right to demand compensation.
At Universal Law Group, our accident attorneys fight for victims to negotiate and litigate for their best interests. When you work with our legal team, we consider the whole picture of how the accident impacts your life. This includes insurance premiums.
Our goal is always to fight for the best possible outcome for our clients. If a negligent driver caused you harm, and the accident was not your fault, don’t hesitate. Contact our team to learn more about how to protect your rights and your future.