January 9, 2011

How Different Types Of Accidents Affect Insurance Rates

Different types of accidents impact insurance rates very differently. Your insurance company will raise your rates if you are responsible for an accident and the insurance company had to pay a claim, but the rate hikes are not always the same.

Injury Accidents

The most expensive accidents for any insurance company to pay claims on are the ones that involve injuries. When the accident only involves vehicles, the most the insurance company would have to pay for would be the replacement costs of each of the vehicles. If someone is injured, however, the insurance company may end up paying medical bills for years after the accident is over. Your insurance rates are more likely to stay higher if you are found at fault for an accident that involves injuries. The severity and expense of treatment for the injuries will make a difference.

Moving Violations

During the on-site investigation of a traffic accident, the police will generally issue a moving violation to any driver that they believe broke a traffic law. Different types of accidents involve different traffic violations. If you receive a ticket during the accident investigation, the odds are that your insurance company will be responsible for paying at least some of the claims that result from the accident. The severity of your ticket can impact the rate hike you experience from your insurance company. Anyone found driving under the influence will have higher insurance rates for many years. The more dangerous the behavior you are ticketed for, the more expensive the resulting insurance rates will be.

Fault Matters

The driver who is deemed to be at fault for the accident is the one who will experience the highest insurance rates. If the insurance company declares you at fault, it means that you were driving in a manner that caused the accident. This reckless driving pattern will cause your insurance rates to go up immediately and keep them from going down again for at least three years. In the eyes of the insurance company, your risk for reckless driving is increased by the fact that you caused an accident.

No Rate Changes for Some Accidents

Some drivers can be involved in a car accident and not have to pay any extra insurance costs. Drivers who are not at fault for an accident will be covered by the at fault driver’s insurance. Both drivers should inform their car insurance companies of the accident, but usually only one driver needs to file a claim. The driver that does not need to file a claim will not have any changes to their insurance policy because they did not drive recklessly. The reason insurance rates go up is because of a payout.