We talk to a lot of Georgians after they have a car accident and a common question is; “if I report the accident to my car insurance company, won’t my rates go up?” The answer is a little complicated.
Insurance companies rate their customers on risk. The more accidents you are involved in, even when it is not your fault, the more likely you are to be involved in other accidents. You can be dropped after involvement in three or more non fault accidents by many insurers and your premium can go up.
So, should you report the accident?
Absolutely yes, every single time. Why?
1. Your insurance company regularly audits your driving record and if the accident showed up in a police report, any negative consequences are going to show up anyway.
2. If you do not notify your car insurance company and something goes wrong with the at fault driver’s insurance coverage (such as a denial for non payment of premium) then your own insurance company can refuse to cover the accident under the uninsured motorist coverage.
What about speeding tickets, how will they affect my rates?
If you get a speeding ticket for 15 miles per hour over the limits, you will typically see a rate hike of around 20%.
Driving between 16 and 30 over can boost the premium by 28%. Getting a reckless driving can be catastrophic with an average rate increase of over 80%.
Don’t even think about drinking and driving. Besides the danger to the public and yourself, you will be dropped or the rates will balloon to the point of pointlessness.
Remember that there are many insurers to choose from and shopping around every few years can save you a bundle of money.