Does filing a claim increase car insurance?
Whether your insurance rates go up after an accident depends on your insurance company, the circumstances of the accident, and whether you have accident forgiveness — which is when insurers allow good drivers to get in one accident without their rates increasing.
When deciding whether to raise your rates, here are a few factors your insurance company will consider.
- How bad the accident was — Greater damage will likely lead to a greater rate increase because the insurer must make a larger payout.
- Who was at fault — Your rates can increase if the accident was your fault but might stay the same if the other driver was at fault. But even if you weren’t at fault, your insurance company may still increase your rate in some states, sometimes called “no-fault” states. But this increase may not be as much as if you were at fault.
- How much the company values you — If you’re a historically safe driver, you are cheaper for auto insurers to cover. So if your driving record is clean and you’ve been with the company for a long time, your insurance company may decide to give you a smaller rate increase compared to someone with a poor driving record.
Drivers with few or no accident claims typically lower rates because they’re perceived as good insurance risks, meaning that insurers have decided that these drivers likely won’t file a claim that an insurer will have to payout.