How Does Insurance Affect a Car Accident Case?
You may be having trouble understanding the impact of an accident on your car insurance premium. This information discusses some of the ways your premium could increase or decrease. It also talks about the best course of action to take during collisions.
There are plenty of reasons for you to not involve in an auto accident. One of those reasons is to lower your insurance premium bill or at least maintain it at the current level. Maybe you have lost your job or having a health crisis at the same time when the accident happened. This will make matter even worse because your rate increase can be exorbitant in some cases. A study from Quadrant Information Services showed that this increase in rate could be as much as 44%, even higher if you are a teen driver. According to an injury attorney in Edison NJ, the disputes between insurance companies and their customers are increasing steadily.
Rates don't have to go up all the time after an auto accident. After all, insurance companies are very reasonable when calculating the rate increase. Your driving record plays a major role in determining what the new rate would be. So, even if you are at fault and if it is a minor scratch or fender bender, the rate increase may be close to zero.
If your rate has gone up due to a collision and you are wondering how long this would affect your premium, the answer is 3 years. Most companies will consider your accident record of the past three years when determining current rates. Even if you switched your car insurance company hoping to get a better rate, your record will be scrutinized at the new company as well.
Another thing to note is, every claim you file with the auto insurance company in the past seven years will be available to your insurer. This record, also known as CLUE report, will result in better or worse coverage. So, whether you seek legal help from a car accident lawyer in Edison NJ to file a past claim, choose to stay with the current insurance company or opt for a new one, your rates will almost be the same.
If you have had an accident in the past and you are really worried about the premium going up, you should consider insurer's forgiveness program. With an accident forgiveness program, your rates won't increase after the first accident, even if you are at-fault. However, every company has its own policy and requirements with this program. The premium price and eligibility depend on factors like the kind of accident, mostly the ones that are excusable.
Maybe your car accident resulted in a small damage that is less than half of your deductible. Or maybe the scratch on your car was due to hitting a wall on your way to public library. Maybe you want to avoid the hassle of reporting minor situations like this to your insurer and instead pay everything out of your pocket. Remember that regardless of the type of accident you encounter, even if it is a minor fender bender, the incident should be immediately reported to your insurance company. There are many reasons for this.
First and foremost, if you fail to report and the other party decides to file a lawsuit, your insurance company will not come to your rescue or represent you at the court simply because they are unaware of the problem. Second, if the damage is worse than originally thought, the insurer may refuse to cover for the repair or replacement. Not reporting the incident can become a hassle when you are looking for new auto insurance policy as well.