When California drivers get into an accident, car repairs and medical bills are not their only concerns. They also worry about their car insurance premiums and how much their rates will increase. According to CBS News, after a car accident, drivers could face higher premiums for years to come.
Premiums could increase by an average of 41% after making just one claim. After two claims, drivers could see an increase of 93%. However, this varies by state. The stricter the insurance regulations are in a state, the higher the rates tend to be after a claim.
There are many factors that could affect whether or not your rates go up and by how much. Here are the main factors allowed in California:
- Years of driving experience
- Miles driven per year
- Driving safety record
Researchers found that when an accident was not your fault, your rates were more likely to remain the same. Whether or not you were at fault may depend on a police’s ruling of what happened, or how insurance companies interpret the accident. This is one of the many reasons so many drivers now rely on dash cams. This provides unbiased information regarding exactly what happened, when and how.
According to insurance company Esurance, drivers typically find out about a rate spike when it is time to renew their policy. They also insist that after minor accidents, such as a fender bender, rates may remain the same if you have an otherwise safe driving history. In fact, your overall driving record seems to be the biggest determining factor. Because of this, it is important for Californians to drive safely and defensively to avoid car accidents whenever possible.