A car crash in Charlotte, North Carolina, can result in different types of losses, including heft increases to your insurance rates. You may suffer injuries leading to medical costs and lost wages. Your car may suffer damage requiring repairs. For such losses, you can recover damages with the help of a Charlotte car accident lawyer.
However, there is another type of loss you may face following an accident. This is the impact of a crash on your insurance rates. An insurer may need to compensate you or the other driver for the losses related to the accident. This may lead the company to deem you as a high-risk policy holder. When this happens, you will face increased insurance rates. Here is a look at the factors that impact your insurance premium following an accident.
Impact of An Accident on Your Insurance Rates
A number of factors affect the actual impact of a crash on your insurance rates. These include:
Your Age and Driving Experience: Typically, an insurance company is more likely to deem a younger driver as high-risk for causing a crash, compared to an older and more experienced driver.
Accident Forgiveness: Whether or not your insurer has ‘Accident Forgiveness’ package as a part of the auto insurance policy also determines the increase rate. When this package is in place, an insurance company may allow you to maintain your insurance rates but only in the case of the first at-fault crash.
Nature of The Accident: Another contributing factor is the nature of the accident. A minor crash which involves no damages or only minor injuries may not seriously affect your insurance. A major crash which involves serious injuries or fatalities, on the other hand, is sure to hike up your insurance rates.
At Fault or Not: The determination of fault in an accident that you are involved in also determines the crash’s impact on your premium rates. If you are found to be at-fault, you can expect that the insurance company will certain increase your rates. However, even when you are not at fault and the other driver caused the crash, the insurer may still deem you as high-risk which can result in higher rates.
Car Make and Model: The make and model of the car you were driving at the time of the crash also impacts fluctuations in your insurance rates. Cars that are more expensive typically require the insurer to provide more coverage. This translates into steeper insurance rates for your auto insurance policy.
How Long the Accident Impacts your Insurance?
This depends on a number of factors. These include:
Your driving record: If you have previous traffic violations on your record, a crash will likely impact you for a longer period. If this is your first crash in the last three to five years, the crash will impact you for a briefer time.
The state where the crash occurred: In North Carolina, for instance, insurance companies will increase the premium on your auto insurance for nearly three years following an accident. In other states, this period could be five years.
Your insurance company: Different insurers have different policies regarding accidents caused by their auto insurance policyholders. You may want to ask your insurance company about company policy in such situations.
Ways To Get Lower Insurance Rates After A Crash
Although its standard for an at-fault driver’s insurance premium rates to increase after a crash, it is possible to minimize this hike. You can do so by using insurance company discounts offered for specific categories such as elderly citizens, military persons, and so on. An insurance company may also offer you lower surcharge rates in return for completing a defensive driving course.
You may want to check the rates of all the insurers available in your area to get the best offer. A good credit score may also contribute towards earning you lower rates.
Why Hire a Charlotte Car Accident Lawyer?
As noted above, the determination of fault in a Charlotte accident can play a huge role in deciding whether or not your insurance company will increase your insurance rates. This is why it is important to hire a reliable Charlotte car accident lawyer.
Here at Ted Greve, our lawyers can help you gather evidence and prove the negligence of the at-fault driver in a court of law. We also ensure that the at-fault driver’s insurance company pays the maximum amount of compensation for your crash-related losses. Call us today to discuss your Charlotte car accident case with our lawyers.