How Much Does Car Insurance Go Up After An Accident?

How Much Does Car Insurance Go Up After An Accident?

Beyond getting medical attention and legal counsel you need after a car accident, you must consider whether your insurance premiums will increase. Car insurance is required in every state, making it an unavoidable expense. Legal representation can assist in steering clear of elevated car insurance premiums after an accident. If you’ve been in a traffic crash, don’t hesitate to contact a Bakersfield car accident attorney.

When Do Insurance Premiums Increase After An Accident?

Insurance rates increase after an at-fault accident. The best way to avoid paying increased rates is to be on the right side of the insurance company’s investigation. An attorney can guide and advocate for your best interests after a crash.

If you are not at fault for the accident, then the accident will not go on your driving record. Your car insurance premiums will not increase if you do not have an accident on your record.

Factors That Affect The Amount Your Premiums Will Increase After An Accident

In addition to faults, insurance companies review some general things before deciding to increase premium rates after an accident and by how much. Insurance companies usually consider the following factors:

  • Your insurance company’s normal practice.
  • Your accident and claims history.
  • Your driving records.
  • Your age and gender.
  • Your geographic location.

How Can An Attorney Help Me Avoid Liability?

A legal advocate can help increase your chances of success after a car accident. An experienced attorney understands how insurance companies run and what tools they use to avoid taking responsibility for your injuries.

A legal team is most beneficial during the investigation phase after a car accident. The insurance company will investigate the cause of the accident on its own. The investigation results help the insurance company decide whether you receive payment on a claim and if your insurance rates ultimately increase.

car accident lawyer

If you hire an attorney, your lawyer and their legal team will investigate the cause of the accident on your behalf. Remember to have an independent investigation completed. Your team can find evidence of fault that the insurance company did not.

As a part of the investigation, your attorney will review your medical records and bills, speak to witnesses, and look at pictures of your injuries and property damage. Your team might employ an Accident Reconstructionist to give a professional opinion about how and why the accident happened.

A thorough investigation by your legal team aims to build a compelling case proving the other driver is at fault. This not only seeks compensation for your losses but also protects against potential increases in your insurance rates. The goal is financial recovery and ensuring your future financial stability and peace of mind.

Do Not Speak To The Insurance Company Before Getting An Attorney

Avoid speaking to insurance adjusters before getting legal advice. Insurance companies want to protect their profits. Not paying settlements can help protect the bottom line.

As an accident victim, you want to ensure the insurance company does not exploit you. The best way to protect yourself from liability is to get legal help before making any statements.

The insurance company might ask you to give a recorded statement about the crash. Settlement negotiations or trials can use any statement you provide as evidence. Your attorney can aid in determining whether you want to provide a statement. A lawyer can guide you in determining what to say or avoid saying if you provide the insurance company with a statement.

How Long Does An Accident Stay On Your Driving Record?

If you are at fault for causing the accident, the crash will go onto your driving record. States vary on how long they keep the accident on their record. For example, the accident will remain on your driving record in California for three years. Your driving record is public record, and employers, law enforcement, and insurance companies can see the accident for as long as it remains on your record.

Having an accident on your driving record can increase your insurance rates. Accidents can also cause you to gain points on your license. Having too many points on your license puts you at risk of suspension. The state Department of Motor Vehicles will suspend a driver’s license who accumulates too many points on their license.

Can An Attorney Help Me Clear My Driving Record After a Car Accident?

An attorney can assist in clearing your driving record. In court, an experienced attorney can advocate for you, arguing for the expungement of your driving record.

How To Prove The Other Driver Is Liable For The Accident

The easiest way to avoid increases in insurance premiums is to prove that the other driver caused the accident. Car accident cases involve negligent actions, and an attorney can support you in constructing your case.

Duty of Care

Driver Is Liable For The Accident

You must prove that the driver owed you a duty of care to win your case. Duty of care means that every driver is responsible for driving safely and avoiding accidents. Drivers that violate the duty of care might owe you damages.

You must prove that the other driver violated their duty of care. Examples of violating the duty of care can include the following:

  • Distracted driving.
  • Drowsy driving.
  • Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
  • Improper lane changes.
  • Running a red light.
  • Speeding.
  • Aggressive driving.


You must prove that the other driver caused the accident to prove they are liable. During the investigation, your attorney and their legal team will assist in gathering evidence that demonstrates the other driver caused the accident.


Every accident victim must show that they suffered damage after the car accident. There are two major categories of damages, including economic and non-economic losses. Economic damages include physical losses like medical bills, lost income, property damage, etc. Non-economic losses can include lost enjoyment of life, reduced quality of life, etc.

Common Tactics That Insurance Companies Use To Avoid Paying Claims

Insurance companies want to avoid taking responsibility for the accident. To ensure that it does not have to pay for your damages, the insurance company will work overtime to make the accident your fault. Some of the most common insurance company tactics to avoid liability include:

Blame Shifting

Insurance companies love to shift the blame after an accident. The goal for the company is to avoid making a payment, and if it successfully blames you for the accident, it is easy to accomplish its goal. Getting prompt legal advice after an accident to avoid blame-shifting.

Denying Your Injuries or Property Damage

Insurance companies will deny your losses to avoid paying out your claim. Insurance companies are notorious for downplaying injuries and other damages. Having an attorney to assist in identifying and seeking compensation for your losses.

Lowball Settlement Offers

Beware of accepting a settlement offer too quickly. After an accident, the insurance company might contact you quickly to offer a settlement and resolve your claim. However, most fast settlement offers do not cover all of your losses. Some injuries were not present until weeks after the crash. Accident victims should be cautious of accepting an offer before completing treatment. There is no going back after accepting a settlement offer. That means you won’t be entitled to recover more money even if the injuries you face are accident-related.

insurance benefitsMisrepresenting Your Benefits

Another underhanded tactic used by insurance companies is misrepresenting your insurance benefits. The insurance company might deny your claim and state that your policy does not cover your injuries. Contact an attorney if you believe the insurance company wrongfully denied your claim. Your attorney will sit down with you and review the terms of your policy.

Requesting a Medical Authorization

An insurance adjuster might ask you to sign a medical authorization release. Insurance companies want access to your medical records to find alternative reasons for your injuries. Some accident victims sign a blank authorization. A medical release without specific dates can give an insurance company access to years of your medical history. Contact an attorney before giving an insurance company access to your medical records.

Delaying Communication

Sometimes, insurance adjusters will avoid speaking with you after a car accident. Not providing prompt information to you after a crash is one way to exhaust you and make you more willing to accept an unsatisfactory settlement offer.

An attorney can communicate with the insurance company on your behalf. You can also refer the insurance company to your legal team. Unfortunately, the insurance company might not take you seriously if you are unrepresented. However, working with a lawyer lets insurance adjusters know that you are serious about getting a monetary recovery.

What Should I Do After a Car Accident?

After an accident, the steps you take are important. You should work to protect your health and your legal right to compensation for your damages.

After a Car AccidentAlways seek medical attention after a car accident. Seeing a doctor protects your physical health and legal rights after a crash. Insurance companies use any excuse to avoid making payments. The easiest way to give the insurance company a reason to deny you claim to not see a doctor. The insurance company will claim that your injuries are not as serious as you claim. Failure to see a doctor can cause you to not receive financial compensation.

Speak to an attorney as soon as possible after an accident. Your attorney can guide you in avoiding mistakes commonly made by accident victims when dealing with the insurance company. Saying too much to the insurance company can be fatal to your claim. A lawyer can strategize about what to say and what to avoid saying to protect your legal claim.

How Can a Car Accident Attorney Help Me?

Having the right legal team working on your behalf can make a significant difference as you navigate the complex process of pursuing financial compensation after a car accident. A car accident attorney brings invaluable experience to your case, supporting you in various ways. They can offer insightful guidance on understanding the intricacies of the insurance claims process, ensuring that you are well-informed and making decisions that align with your best interests.

Settlement Negotiations

The road to resolving your car accident case begins with settlement negotiations. Accident victims whom legal counsel represents have a better time getting the money they need to recover financially after an accident. As discussed above, insurance companies use several strategies to avoid making payments. An attorney can empower you to combat deceptive insurance tactics and secure the financial recovery you deserve after an accident.

Follow Procedural Rules

Civil accident plaintiffs must comply with several procedural rules. Failure to follow the civil rules of procedure can devastate your case. For example, every accident plaintiff must meet the statute of limitations. The statute of limitations is the deadline state law sets for filing a lawsuit. Under the law, accident victims have to file a lawsuit in court two years from the day the accident happened. If you miss the statute of limitations, the dismissal of your case becomes inevitable.

An attorney can guide you in comprehending your procedural requirements and prevent you from overlooking important deadlines.

Represent You In Court

While most cases get resolved during the negotiation process, sometimes cases move forward to trial. If the insurance company does not offer an adequate settlement, you might find yourself in a courtroom.

A trial can be an intimidating process, especially if you are inexperienced. Your lawyer will stand with you and help persuasively present your case so that you can get the compensation you need after an accident.

Contact a Car Accident Attorney Today!

Car Accident Attorney, Mickey Fine

Mickey Fine, Bakersfield Car Accident Lawyer

Facing the aftermath of a car accident alone can feel scary and overwhelming. You might not know how to make the best decisions to protect your best interests. An experienced car accident attorney can guide navigating the insurance claims process and securing the compensation you rightfully deserve.

Contact a car accident attorney today to learn more about your legal rights after an accident. Having the best legal team available increases your odds of a successful outcome. Start now and begin rebuilding your life after a car accident.

Car Accident
by Mickey Fine Law
Last updated on - Originally published on