Most people do their best to drive safely and avoid accidents, even fender benders. However, these incidents can happen, impacting your wellbeing, vehicle, and insurance premiums. Below, the experienced professionals from Altra Insurance, the leading providers of auto insurance San Diego drivers trust for reliable, high-quality service, explain whether a small fender bender will raise your auto insurance costs.
A Likely Increase
Almost all insurance rates will rise following even a minor fender bender, but the rate typically won’t go up until you renew your policy. Therefore, you can shop around for the best deals. If you choose another provider, it’s best to take a driving course, if available, to prove you’re interested in maintaining a safe driving record and possibly lowering your rate. Also look into accident forgiveness programs or consider altering your policy, such as by choosing a plan that raises the deductible but lowers the premium.
Most providers consider the number of claims you’ve previously filed, especially within the last few years. You could face a significant increase in your premium if you’ve filed many claims in the past. The type of damage done to the vehicle or other people is another factor. For example, an insurance hike is typically lower when the accident only involves the automobile and property. However, if you or other individuals are injured, expect the rise in your insurance to be higher.
The Cost of the Damage
Some people choose to cover the cost of the damage on their own if it’s not as high as their deductible. If the accident is your fault, the liability portion of your coverage will pay for the damage done to another vehicle. The collision part will generally cover the damage to your automobile if you have this type of insurance.
Although you have the option to cover the damage out of pocket, the accident could be more costly than you assume. A fender bender sounds like a minor incident, but the auto body shop you choose for repairs could provide a list of problems you don’t expect. Keep in mind most insurance companies require policyholders to report accidents within a specific amount of time. If you go beyond this time frame, the company may have the legal right to deny your claim.
Not at Fault
Even if you’re not at fault for the accident, your insurance rate will likely go up. However, it may rise by only a small percentage, and this will vary from person to person. This is due to a variety of reasons, including the fact that your insurance company may still be required to pay after the small fender bender, whether it’s your fault or not. It’s best to speak with your provider or conduct some research to see what your rights are.
Whether you’ve been in an accident or not, it’s important to make sure you find the most dependable car insurance to protect yourself in the future. If you need affordable, reliable auto insurance, look no further than the trustworthy pros at Altra Insurance Services. We can take care of a variety of your insurance needs, including motorcycle, homeowners, and business insurance. Give us a call today at (800) 719-9972 to find out more about our high-quality insurance products and impeccable service.