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Generally, after someone is involved in an accident, the cost of their auto insurance may increase. However, filing an accident claim does not mean your insurance rates will automatically go up. There are several factors that could influence the chance of an increase in your insurance when you file a claim on your insurance policy after an accident. Two of the most significant influences on your insurance premiums are your driving record and whether you are found to be at fault for the accident.
The insurance company will consider your driving record when determining the cost of your insurance policy going forward. A poor driving record is one of the primary reasons for an increase in auto insurance. If you are considered to be a high risk because of your driving record, it is likely that your insurance will increase after an accident.
If you are found to be at fault for the accident, your insurance rate may increase after the accident. An insurance adjuster will be assigned to your case and will review the police report, evaluate the damages to your vehicle, and talk to witnesses or others involved in the accident. The adjuster works with the insurer to identify who is at fault for the accident. In some situations, multiple drivers played a role in the accident.
The severity of the accident is another driving factor in a possible increase of your insurance. Damages to the vehicle can drive up the cost of insurance, especially if the car is totaled. However, a simple fender bender may have little effect on your insurance rate.
If your insurance company increases your premium after an accident, those rates could remain in place for up to three years according to the Insurance Information Institute. Although the amount of time an accident affects your insurance rates varies by insurer.
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