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How Much Will My Car Insurance Rates Go Up After a Crash?

Car insurance rates go up by an average of 49% if you cause an accident.

Your rates usually won't go up if the accident wasn't your fault or if you have accident forgiveness. And not every car insurance company or state handles an accident on your driving record the same way.

Your car insurance company typically won't raise your rates until your policy renews. So you should wait until your current policy is about to expire before switching to a different company.

Best cheap car insurance quotes after an accident

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How much does insurance increase after an accident?

If you cause a car accident, your car insurance rates will go up by an average of $80 per month for full coverage.

Where you live has a big impact on how much you'll pay for insurance after a car accident.

California has the largest rate increase. An accident in California will double full coverage insurance rates. In contrast, an accident in Alaska only increases rates by 26%.

Increase in car insurance rates after an accident by state

Monthly full coverage quotes after an accident, by state

State
Clean record
After accident
Difference
Alabama$165$23945%
Alaska$136$17226%
Arizona$224$32947%
Arkansas$157$23449%
California$156$313101%
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Will my insurance go up if someone hits me?

Your insurance rates probably won't go up after an accident caused by another driver.

That's because the other driver's insurance should pay for any damage or injuries after an accident that wasn't your fault.

But some companies raise rates slightly, even if you're not at fault. Your rates are more likely to go up if you've filed multiple claims over the past few years. That's because your insurance company may consider you a risky driver.

Your rates could also go up if you had a claim-free discount prior to the accident. This is more likely if you have to make an uninsured or underinsured motorist claim, or a collision claim after a hit-and-run.

Which companies have the best car insurance after an accident?

State Farm has the cheapest rates after an accident, compared to other national companies.

The average cost of full coverage insurance from State Farm is $154 per month after an at-fault accident. The company only increases rates by around 24% after an accident.

Erie is the best regional insurance company after a crash. Full coverage from Erie costs $133 per month after an at-fault accident. However, Erie is only available in 12 states and the Washington, DC.

Cheap car insurance quotes after an accident

In comparison, Nationwide, Allstate and Geico raise rates by at least 56%, on average.

Cheap full coverage quotes after an accident

Compare rates in your state

Some companies won't raise rates for minor accidents. For example, Progressive typically doesn't raise your rates for your first accident claim if the total damage is less than $500.

What if I have accident forgiveness?

If you have accident forgiveness, your first accident typically won't cause your rates to go up. However, you could still see an increase in rates if you had a safe driver or claim-free discount prior to your accident.

How long does an accident stay on your insurance?

An accident will usually affect your insurance rates for three to five years.

Your rates will go up the most in your first renewal period after the crash, then return to normal after three to five years. The more time has passed since the accident, the less it will affect your insurance rates.

How insurance rates change over time after a crash

If you caused a crash within the last six months and made a liability claim, your rates will increase by about 60% the next time your policy renews. That increase will go away gradually over time.

You can expect your rates to be about 47% higher than normal after two years, and only 2% higher than normal after four years.

Minimum-coverage quotes after an accident

Time since crash
Monthly cost
Rate increase
6 months$8460%
1 year$8052%
2 years$7847%
3 years$6013%
4 years$542%
Clean record$53

Insurance companies have found that drivers who have caused a crash are more likely to make a future claim. That's why these drivers pay more for car insurance.

When an accident might not increase car insurance rates

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Most insurance companies consider who caused an accident when deciding if your rate will go up.

Some companies will only increase your rates if they consider the accident to be more than half your fault. But proving fault in an accident can be difficult.

According to State Farm, you aren't at fault if you were:

  • Lawfully parked
  • Reimbursed by, or on behalf of, a person responsible for the accident
  • Rear-ended and didn't get a ticket in connection with the accident
  • In a hit-and-run, if you file a police report within 24 hours
  • Didn't get a ticket in connection with the accident, but the other driver did
  • In an accident caused by animals or falling objects

How to save on car insurance after an accident

If you caused an accident and your car insurance rate increased, you can lower your rates by comparing quotes, looking for discounts and adjusting your coverage.

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Shop around: After an accident, it's important to see which company is offering the best rates for you. Different companies may treat your accident differently. For example, full coverage after a crash from Allstate costs twice as much as a policy from State Farm.

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Find discounts: Insurance companies offer lots of ways to save on car insurance. For example, you can save money by having multiple policies, getting good grades in school and driving safely, as tracked by an app.

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Raise your deductible: A higher deductible will lower your car insurance rates.

However, this can be a risky approach because you'll pay more for repairs if you cause another accident. Always choose a deductible you can easily afford in an emergency.

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Reduce your coverage: Getting less coverage is another way to lower your rates after a crash. This approach could also lead to more money out of pocket after an accident. So, you should only get rid of coverage you don't need. For instance, if you have multiple cars, you may not need to pay extra for rental car reimbursement.

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Improve your credit score: Most states allow insurance companies to use your credit scores to determine your insurance rates. Paying off debt, not missing payments and addressing any issues on your credit report can all help lower rates.


Frequently asked questions

How much does insurance go up after an accident?

Full coverage car insurance rates go up by 49% after an accident, on average. State Farm has the smallest rate increase after an accident, at only 24%.

Can you get car insurance after an accident?

Yes, most of the time you can get car insurance after an accident.

If you have multiple accidents and tickets, you may have trouble finding a company to cover you. In that case, you should consider nonstandard companies like The General and Direct Auto.

Will my insurance go up if I file a claim?

Yes, but how much insurance rates go up depends on the type and severity of the claim, your driving record and your insurance company. For example, an uninsured motorist claim after an accident that's not your fault will typically impact your rates less than a crash you cause.

How long does an accident affect your insurance?

An accident usually affects car insurance rates for at least three years. Some companies factor in an at-fault accident for up to five years or longer in rare cases.

Do insurance rates go up after a no-fault accident?

Your rates may increase after filing a

Will my insurance go up if someone hits me?

Your rate usually won't go up after an accident that wasn't your fault. However, some companies may raise your rates in certain situations, even if you're not the at-fault driver. This could happen if the accident was partially your fault, or if you've filed a lot of claims over a short period of time.


Methodology

To find out how much car insurance goes up after an accident, ValuePenguin gathered quotes from all 50 states and the Washington, DC. Quotes are for a 30-year-old man with good credit who drives a 2015 Honda Civic EX.

Rates are based on a full coverage policy with collision and comprehensive coverage, plus higher liability limits than state minimums.

  • Bodily injury liability: $50,000 per person; $100,000 per accident
  • Property damage liability: $25,000 per accident
  • Uninsured and underinsured motorist bodily injury: $50,000 per person; $100,000 per accident
  • Personal injury protection: $10,000, in states where available
  • Comprehensive and collision: $500 deductible

To determine the effect of an at-fault accident on rates over time, our experts gathered minimum-coverage quotes from ZIP codes across Illinois. Rates are based on a driver with an at-fault property damage liability claim of $2,000.

We used Quadrant Information Services to compile and analyze the insurance rate data. The data was publicly sourced from insurance company filings. Rates should be used for comparative purposes only. Your quote may be different.

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author's opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.