How filing a claim and personal fault can affect insurance rates

On Behalf of | Jun 16, 2023 | Car Accidents |

Those who are involved in a motor vehicle collision in Pennsylvania can typically count on insurance coverage to help address their losses. While not every driver carries enough coverage for the worst crashes that occur, there is typically at least some liability coverage that applies to the expenses inspired by a wreck.

Most people think nothing of filing an insurance claim and may only realize after they do so that their need for crash-related compensation could potentially alter how much they’ll pay for insurance going forward. Especially when the person filing the claim believes it is clear that they were not at fault for the crash, they probably expect that their need for coverage won’t increase their rates. However, they may very well still end up paying more for insurance in the future.

When claims affect coverage costs

There are many scenarios in which an individual will end up paying more for their liability insurance because of their driving record. The first and likely most is when someone gets cited for a traffic infraction. The record of their traffic violation will be accessible to insurance companies for multiple years afterward, and they will likely see an increase in their rates when they go to renew their policy or they apply for coverage with a different company.

The same is true anytime an individual is at fault for a crash. Even if a police officer doesn’t issue a ticket, if the other party involved in the collision files a claim for bodily injury or property damage liability coverage, that will typically result in an increase of a driver’s rates as well. In fact, when a driver isn’t at fault for a crash and doesn’t get a ticket, they could still increase their own rates if they make a claim against their personal policy. Those with uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage will typically have to pay more for insurance if they ever need to make use of that protection after a wreck.

Generally, the more traffic infractions and sizable claims a motorist has on their recent record, the more of a risk they will look like to an insurance company, and therefore the more they will pay for the same coverage. Understanding how a crash, a claim or a ticket could influence insurance rates may help someone better handle the aftermath of a recent wreck.

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