Once you've made sure everyone involved is okay physically, you've called the police for an automobile accident report, and your car is being tended to if it's not still driveable, this might just be the next thing on your mind. You're dreading how much your insurance will go up each month or term, because of your accident.
Per 2017 data from Quadrant Information Services, any collision costing your insurer $2,000 in claims would raise your rates by nearly 45 percent when you go back to renew your insurance. So, your premiums won't go up immediately if you're paying monthly, but when your six months or year are up, you'll see the increase when it's time to renew.
Having said that, your rates actually might not go up. If the accident wasn't your fault, then they shouldn't at all. Also, some insurers won't raise rates for minor fender-benders and no-fault collisions. The cleaner your driving record is, the better off you're going to be.
Your rates are unlikely to rise if the other driver is at fault, it's your first incident and you have accident forgiveness, it's a minor incident after years of safe driving, or it's a minor incident after years of you not filing any claims with your insurer.
On the other hand, your rates might go up if you are at fault for said collision, you live in one of the states that have no-fault car insurance laws, you've filed claims with your current or prior insurers in the last three years, or the cost of the involved damages is considered significant, typically in the thousands.
For most insurance companies, your rates will stay higher for three years. That's the industry standard for higher premiums after an accident. Switching carriers won't get around this either, as they all do it three years following the date of an incident, regardless of whether or not you were covered by them at the time.
Also, when you shop around, be honest about your accidents, no matter how minor. They can look up your driving records, so they'll see the accident whether you tell them or not, and if you don't tell them, you're going to rub them the wrong way.
You have a personal insurance report card, and every single property claim you ever file, be it auto, homeowners, or renters, gets logged.
Always let your insurance company know about collisions you've had with other drivers, whether you're at fault or not. First of all, even if you do not personally file a claim, the other driver might decide to sue you for damages; your insurance company can't protect or represent you well if they didn't know what happened. Secondly, the damage might wind up being worse than you first thought it was; even if you can drive the car away from the scene of an accident, there might be lingering or underlying issues that do not get discovered until later.
If you have questions about car accidents and your insurance rates, you need the services of a top-rated personal injury lawyer like Lakota R. Denton who has years of experience and a large number of 5-star Google reviews.