Make no mistake about it, car insurance companies are for-profit enterprises. They are in it to make money and they will raise your rates if they have a good reason to do so. In Utah, however, you do have some protection if you are not at fault for the accident. To answer this question, we will first review reasons that your rates may go up. Second, we will discuss what happens to your rates if you are not at fault. And third, we will talk about steps you can take to minimize the risk that the insurance company will raise your rates.

1. When do insurance companies raise car insurance rates?

There are several factors that influence an insurance company’s decision to raise car insurance premiums after a car crash. One the biggest factors is their determination of who was at fault. If you are deemed responsible for the car accident, there is a good chance the insurance company will consider raising your rates.

Another factor is the severity of the accident. In other words, the insurance company will look at how much damage the accident caused. This includes damage to vehicles as well as injuries. The more expensive the accident, the more likely it is you will see an increase in your insurance premiums.

Your driving history will also play a role in how the insurance company assesses your rates. Automobile insurance companies are in the business of weighing risks against financial rewards. If you have a poor driving history, then you are not a good risk for the insurance company.

If it was your first accident, you may be fine and your rates may not go up. However, if you have had multiple car accidents, the insurance company will likely take a close look at how much they will charge you to stay on as an insured. The consequence of a bad driving record is that you will pay more for car insurance.

2. What if you were not at fault for the accident?

If you were not at fault for the accident, we have good news for you. Utah law does not allow insurance companies to raise rates for drivers who did not cause the accident. In 2004, the Utah legislature passed a law found at Utah Code Ann. §31A-19a-212(1)(b) that states an insurance company’s rating schedule “may not permit a premium increase due to . . . a claim under a policy of insurance covering a motor vehicle or the operation of a motor vehicle resulting from any incident, including acts of vandalism, in which the person named in the policy or any other person using the insured motor vehicle with the express or implied permission of the named insured is not at fault.”

This is a protection specific to Utah law that does not exist in all other states. So if you are a good driver and you have a car insurance policy purchased in the state of Utah, you are in luck. Keep driving safely to avoid accidents so your rates won’t climb.

3. What can you do to keep your rates from going up? 

The best thing you can do to keep your car insurance rates in check is to maintain a good, clean driving record. Stay out of accidents, drive safely, and avoid traffic citations. Over time, your good driving habits will be rewarded with lower car insurance rates.

Another good benefit that many insurance companies offer is accident forgiveness. Shop around and find an insurance company that promises not to raise your premiums if you get in an accident.

If you have questions about your specific situation, it is always best to check with your insurance agent to make sure you are getting the best deal for you.

If you have questions about how to manage all the details after a car accident, call the Schriever Law Firm. Don’t. leave it to chance. Leave it to Schriever!