If you are involved in an accident, will your insurance rates go up? This is a question that many people have. Whether or not your car insurance company will raise your rates depends on several factors.
If you have a question about your auto insurance rates and how they may impact your car accident case, contact a Washington, DC auto accident lawyer with Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. today for a free consultation. We value the attorney-client relationship, and we will work to protect your rights and obtain the compensation you deserve.
The Severity and Cost of the Claim
If you’ve been in a minor fender bender, your car insurance rates may not increase as much as if you were in a severe accident that caused significant damage to your car. Your auto insurance provider will consider the amount of damage and the cost of the claim to evaluate your new rates.
Your Driving Record
Auto insurance companies consider your driving record when calculating the cost of your policy. If you have a good driving record with no accidents or violations, you may get away with a slight increase or no increase at all.
On the other hand, drivers who are considered at higher risk may be charged a higher premium. After an accident, your auto insurance company may re-evaluate your driving record and decide to raise your premium if new claims indicate you’ve become a riskier driver.
Which Driver Is At Fault
Whether or not your insurance goes up may depend on who is at fault for the accident. After an accident, car insurance companies send an insurance adjuster to investigate the claim. They’ll assess the damage by looking at the photos of the accident, looking at the police report, and interviewing witnesses. In most cases, if you are found to be at fault for the accident, your rates will go up.
Compensation After a No-Fault Accident
If you are in a no-fault accident, your insurance company helps pay for you and your passenger’s medical bills, regardless of fault. This means that you will not be able to sue the other driver for your injuries or damage to your car unless the damages meet a certain threshold. However, your insurer may consider the amount it pays toward your expenses when determining your rate change after you file a claim.
Compensation After an At-Fault Accident
In an at-fault state, the driver who is found to be responsible for the accident is also liable for the damages. This means that you can sue the other driver or file a lawsuit against them for your injuries or for damage to your car. If you are in an at-fault accident, your insurance company may pay for the other driver’s medical bills and damage to their vehicle.
How Long Does an Accident Stay on Your Record?
Although an accident can affect your insurance, it will not remain on your record forever. If you are involved in an accident, it will usually stay on your record for three to five years. However, this may change depending on your insurance carrier and your state, so it’s important to check your policy or ask an insurance agent.
Will My Insurance Costs Increase if I File a Claim?
Most insurance companies will not increase your rates if you file a claim.
Will My Insurance Go Up in a Hit-and-Run Accident?
Typically your insurance rates will not increase after a hit and run. However, for hit-and-runs, your insurer may require you to report the accident within 24 hours of discovering the damage. You will be able to file a claim under your UM/UIM coverage policy.
Should I Report My Accident to My Insurer?
It is always a good idea to report your accident to your insurer. If you do not report the accident, your insurer may not cover the damages. If you are found to be at fault for the accident, and you did not report it, your rates could go up. It’s better to be safe and report the accident to your insurer.
Accident Forgiveness Programs
Some insurance companies offer accident forgiveness programs. Most accident forgiveness programs are designed to waive the first at-fault loss on your car insurance policy and will waive only one loss within a specified timeframe. This means that your rates will not go up after your first accident. If you were enrolled before your accident, you might be able to have the claim surcharge waived.
While accident forgiveness programs are optional and do add to the cost of your policy, if you have been with your insurer for a certain length of time, you may qualify for free.
Types of Insurance Coverage
There are many different types of insurance coverage. The type of coverage you need will depend on your driving habits and your state.
- Liability Coverage: This is the most basic type of coverage. It covers damage to other people and property if you are at fault for an accident.
- Collision Insurance Coverage: This type of coverage covers damage to your car if you are in an accident.
- Comprehensive Coverage: This type of coverage covers damage to your car from things other than accidents, such as theft or weather.
- Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage: This type of coverage protects you if you are in an accident with a driver who does not have insurance or does not have enough insurance to cover the damage.
- Medical Payments Coverage: This type of coverage pays for your medical bills if you are in an accident.
- Personal Injury Protection: This type of coverage pays for your lost wages and other expenses if you are in an accident, regardless of fault.
Can a Car Accident Attorney Help Me File an Insurance Claim?
Yes. Contact a car accident attorney today if you have been in an accident. A car accident attorney can help you gather the evidence to prove that you were not at fault for the accident. They can also help you negotiate with the insurance company to get the best settlement possible. They can help you get the compensation you deserve.
How Much Can I Receive in a Car Accident Claim?
The best way to find out what your case might be worth is to speak with an attorney with Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. Our accident lawyers have obtained settlements for various car accident cases.
Here are a few of our case results:
- $6 million for a client who suffered a brain injury after being involved in a rear-end collision.
- $4.8 million for a severely injured client after another vehicle struck his motorcycle.
- $1.9 million for a client who suffered a permanent back injury due to a car accident.
- $1.5 million for a client who had to undergo multiple surgeries after a negligent motorist cut off his motorcycle.
- $1 million settlement obtained on behalf of our 19-year-old client who was a passenger in a car in which the driver lost control, causing a collision. As a result, our client suffered extensive brain damage with cognitive impairment. He was in a coma for an extended period of time. Although he has regained consciousness, he is unable to care for himself. The law firm asked the Court to appoint him a guardian to care for him. The law firm is helping to establish a special needs trust so that the proceeds from the settlement will be protected against any medical liens.
- $1 million settlement on behalf of a client who suffered a brain injury when the driver of the car in which he was a passenger lost control of his vehicle.
What Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. Can Do For You
The Washington, DC car accident lawyers with Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. have a proven track record of success helping clients obtain the maximum compensation possible for injuries they have suffered due to the negligence of others. Our firm has consistently demonstrated we have the expertise needed to help our clients see that justice is served. We have the resources needed to conduct thorough investigations of all the circumstances contributing to a motor vehicle accident, gathering the evidence to establish liability and negligence.
Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. has achieved more than $500 million in verdicts and settlements, and our attorneys have more than a century of combined legal experience. Two of our partners are certified by the National Board of Trial Advocacy. Our firm has also earned the highest AV® Rating from Martindale-Hubbell®, one of the most respected attorney-ranking service organizations in the United States. Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. attorneys work passionately on behalf of our clients to help them secure fair compensation – there is no type of case that is too complex for us to litigate.
Contact a Washington DC Accident Lawyer Today
If you are looking for the highest level of representation available for your personal injury case, turn to Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. Our firm has helped clients recover more than $500 million in compensation, and we have more than 100 years of combined experience. All of our partners are recognized by Washington, DC Super Lawyers®, and our firm includes three past presidents of the Trial Lawyers Association of Metropolitan Washington, DC.
We work to help our clients obtain fair settlement offers to compensate them for the injuries they’ve suffered, but our attorneys are extremely well-equipped to go to trial if needed. Call (202) 659-8600 or contact us online to get the proven legal representation you deserve.