Unfortunately, every time you get into your vehicle you are at risk of getting into an accident. There are thousands of people on the road every day, and even if you are the best driver in the world, someone else could hit you. Car insurance – even cheap insurance – is a legal requirement for this reason. It helps cover the financial damage of a car accident, or other incidents that affect your vehicle. Car insurance can be expensive, and even worse, it usually goes up after you get into an accident.
How much your premium will increase after a car accident depends on several factors. Where you live, how severe the accident was, how much of the accident was your fault (unless you live in a no-fault state), the dollar amount of the claim (filed by either party), the type of violation incurred, whether or not tickets were given, and whether or not the accident or violation shows up on the report visible to car insurance companies all come together to determine the amount – if any – of your premium increase. You can browse online in order to find how much a premium increases on average, and even a chart that demonstrates this increase as the amount of accidents you are involved in rises.
If you are worried about premium increases due to an accident, you can consider enrolling in an accident forgiveness policy. Many car insurance companies offer this benefit (typically at an extra charge), but the specifics of the benefit will depend on the company. Generally, if you've been accident free for a specified period of time, your first accident will not raise your premium. Unfortunately, this is a preventative action, and will not change anything once you've already been in an accident.
After you've been in an accident, there are a few things you can do to lower your premium. There are many discounts available to people that have nothing to do with an accident. Having a good credit score, driving safe and secure vehicles, being a good student (if applicable), living in a safe area outside of a city, parking in a garage, and shopping around companies for car insurance are all great ways to get discounts and save money. In addition, many car insurance companies will offer you a cheap insurance policy if you sign up for a driver's education course. This shows the insurance company that you are dedicated to getting your driving skills back on track and being safe on the road.
At the end of the day, an insurance company's motive is to make money. If you are a risky driver and end up making multiple insurance claims, the insurance company is losing money by having you as a client. Therefore, riskier drivers pay higher premiums. The best way to get cheap insurance is by showing the company you are low risk. Being a safe driver and building a safe driving record is the first place to start.