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The Total Coverage Blog

Will My Car Insurance Rates Increase — And by How Much?

The two most common factors that cause your insurance rate to rise are having an at-fault accident and getting a traffic violationincluding a speeding ticket. While neither one of these issues is a guarantee that your rates will rise, they are the most common reasons.

Auto insurance rates aren’t determined by one-size-fits-all rules. Whether your rates change — and by how much — is dictated by numerous factors. No insurance agent and no blog can 100% accurately determine how much your insurance rate will jump after a ticket or accident.

However, as an auto insurance agency offering coverage from multiple companies, we see a large variety of claims, violations, and rate increases. Get the inside scoop on what you may be able to expect if you make a mistake behind the wheel.

How Do Traffic and Speeding Tickets Affect My Car Insurance Rate?

The severity of your violation is one of the biggest factors that determines how much a traffic or speeding ticket will increase your car insurance premium.

If you’re ticketed for driving 10 or 15 miles per hour over the speed limit, your rates won’t dramatically increase. After all, the insurance company knows that nobody’s perfect.

However, a more severe violation can cause your rates to jump — and even result in having your insurance coverage dropped altogether.

For example, a speeding ticket for 26 miles per hour over the speed limit is classified as an excessive speeding violation. Not only will you likely have your license suspended after this violation, but your insurance company may consider you a reckless driver. This is not the type they want to insure.

girl getting a speeding ticket that will affect her car insurance rate

Since we use three separate companies for auto insurance, we have multiple options in case one company denies you coverage. Learn more about our auto insurance coverage.

While one minor violation won’t break the bank, multiple minor violations in a three-year period can cause your monthly payment to skyrocket. You can expect to see up to a 30% increase in your insurance premium.

Good news: not every insurance company pulls their drivers’ records every year. So even if you do get speeding tickets or other violations, your rate might not increase right away. Some of the companies Unruh Insurance uses pull records every year and some don’t. However, a traffic violation will definitely affect your rate when looking for a new insurance carrier.

In general, respect the rules and laws of the road and you can expect to have favorable insurance rates — even if you slip up from time to time.

How Do Accidents Affect My Car Insurance Rates?

To answer this question, we need to differentiate between no-fault accidents and at-fault accidents. No-fault accidents describe incidents for which you bear no culpability. At-fault car accidents describe any incident which you are liable for damage.

  • No-fault accidents have NO effect on your insurance premiums whatsoever.
  • At-fault accidents can cause your car insurance rates to increase as high as 50%!

While at-fault accidents can cause your insurance to increase, the damage needs to be over a pre-determined dollar value. In PA, if your claim requires less than a payment of $1,750 over the deductible, an insurance company cannot raise your rates.

If your claim requires more than a payment of $1,750, your insurance company is allowed to — and most likely will — raise your rates by as much as 50%!

The Importance of First Accident Forgiveness

Again, it comes back to the universal truth that nobody’s perfect. If you’re a safe driver and you have an accident — even one where you’re at fault — you don’t deserve to have your rate hiked.

safe drivers with first accident forgiveness

Most good insurance companies offer First Accident Forgiveness after a certain waiting period — it’s one of the most crucial features to look for when choosing an insurance company.

Contact us to learn more about insurance policies with great rates and First Accident Forgiveness.

Can a Hit and Run be an At-Fault Accident?

If your car was damaged in a hit and run, you absolutely need to call the police. Not only does it provide the possibility for the perpetrator to be caught, but is also necessary to classify the accident as no-fault on your behalf.

If you do not report the incident to the police within 24 hours, your insurance company will have no choice but to mark it as an at-fault accident, which carries the potential to raise your rates.

The Lancaster County Insurance Agency on Your Side

At Unruh Insurance, we have decades of experience finding the best insurance for drivers in Central PA and beyond.

We know that finding a good rate from a company that protects you can require some shopping around. Let us do the searching for you. We use three different companies for auto insurance, so we can always provide you the best price — and the best benefits for everyone.

The companies Unruh Insurance uses are:

  • Erie
  • Progressive
  • Foremost

Whether you want to save money, enjoy coverage that truly protects you, or both, get your quote today!

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