In Massachusetts, all drivers are required to have insurance for their vehicles. Drivers without insurance may face penalties if the police pull them over. Insurance before an accident can be somewhat expensive, depending on who your insurance company is and what kind of policy you have. After a car accident, your insurance should hopefully cover most if not all your expenses. Unfortunately, this often comes with the added consequences of increased insurance rates.
After a car accident, your insurance costs are very likely to go up. This is often because drivers involved in accidents are perceived as being higher-risk, and insurance companies will only continue to insure them if they pay more money. How much your insurance goes up may depend on many different factors, including whether you are at fault for the accident. After an accident, a Boston car accident lawyer can help you handle your insurance company and hopefully avoid a hike in your insurance rates. Even so, there may be ways to reduce your insurance rates over time.
How Much Does Insurance Increase After a Car Accident in Massachusetts?
It is difficult to say precisely how much your insurance may increase after a car accident. The answer to this question depends on a number of factors, including who was at fault for the accident, the severity of the accident, and your insurance provider’s policies.
Some sources report that the average insurance costs increase by about 30% to 50% after a car accident. Some insurance rates have increased by as much as 70% to 80%. These numbers depend on what kind of insurance you have, your insurance company, and the laws of your state.
You can generally expect your insurance to increase more if your accident was more serious. For example, a collision involving serious bodily harm to you or others will raise your insurance rates more than a minor rear-end accident. In any case, you should consult with a skilled Boston personal injury lawyer about how to approach your insurance company after a collision.
Factors That Are More Likely to Cause Insurance to Increase After a Car Accident
No two car accidents are exactly the same, and the various details of your accident might play a role in how your insurance rates change. First and foremost, your insurance rates will almost undoubtedly go up if it is determined that you are at fault for the accident. Insurance companies do not like high-risk drivers, and being deemed at-fault for a crash is like a red flag for insurance companies.
Other factors include how serious injuries and damages were after an accident. Was anybody injured? Were their injuries severe or mild? Was there property damage? Was the property damage extensive? All these questions are considered by your insurance company when they adjust your rates after an accident. A more serious accident with severe injuries or damages will likely raise your insurance rates considerably. This is especially the case if you are also at fault for the crash.
Some insurance companies also forgive first-time or low-dollar accidents if you otherwise have a history of safe driving, so check your policy’s terms and conditions.
Why Does Insurance Go Up After a Car Accident?
Insurance goes up because insurance companies do not want to lose money. Money is often the driving force behind many decisions made by insurance companies. Drivers that cause accidents are more likely to cost an insurance company money over time. Insurance companies increase their rates for risky drivers to offset actual or potential payouts they might need to make because of that driver.
Insurance companies might use several tools when deciding whether to raise your rates. After an accident, the insurance company can examine the details of the crash to decide whether to raise your insurance. They can also use your driving record. Drivers with a history of accidents or unsafe driving are more likely to see their rates go up. At the end of the day, the insurance company will weigh the driver’s propensity for risk against the cost of insurance. A riskier driver will be charged more.
Will My Insurance Go Back Down After a Car Accident in Massachusetts?
Although your insurance can go up after a car accident, it does not have to stay at an increased rate. There are several ways in which your insurance rates can be reduced. Much like increased insurances rates, decreased rates have to do with risk assessments.
Some insurance companies in Massachusetts offer accident forgiveness programs to help drivers reduce their insurance rates after car accidents. How accident forgiveness works depends on who your insurance provider is. Generally, accident forgiveness involves an insurance company agreeing to overlook an accident on your driving record when assessing your insurance rates.
Insurance rates also tend to decrease over time. As long as you do not have another accident or any unsafe driving incidents, your insurance may go back down after a few years. A few years of safe driving is often enough to convince an insurance company that you are not a high-risk driver. There may also be options to take driver safety classes to lower your rates.
What If My Insurance Goes Up After an Accident and I Cannot Afford It?
Many people wonder what they will do if they can no longer afford their insurance after an accident. If your insurance becomes too expensive, you might have to cancel it. Unfortunately, no insurance means no driving. Your license may still be valid, but you cannot drive your car without insurance.
You can speak with an attorney about your accident, and they might be able to help you communicate with your insurance company. Insurance companies are often looking for someone to blame for an accident, and your attorney can help you prove that the blame does not lie with you.
For example, crashes must be reported to the police, and the police write accident reports. These reports often contain information about who likely caused the accident if the police can determine that detail. An accident report that shows you likely did not cause the accident can be crucial to keeping your insurance rates down.
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