Being seriously injured in a car accident is a painful experience, typically requiring a long road to recovery. One injury, that hits your wallet, is rising insurance premiums. In some cases, it’s even more painful than the physical injury as rising insurance premiums won’t lower for 3-5 years after the accident. So, if you have been in an accident that wasn’t your fault, you may wonder if your insurance rates will increase.
What is a No-Fault Accident?
“No-Fault” means that the victim of the car accident did not cause the crash. The “At-Fault” driver is responsible for paying for damages and injuries of the “Not-At-Fault” driver. In Texas, however, your insurance premiums can still go up if you are not at fault.
How much do insurance companies raise premiums after a no-fault accident in Texas?
Insurance rates in Texas go up by an average of 59% after an “At-Fault” Accident. Still, premiums can increase if you are not at fault.
The Zebra conducted a survey in 2020 that reports that annual insurance premiums went up by an average of $67 across all states.
How Are Insurance Premiums Calculated?
According to the Texas Department of Insurance, insurance companies price their premiums to match the cost of future claims. They consider many variables, including your personal risk factors such as age, the type of vehicle you drive, where you live, etc. However, they also look at the average amount they spend on all claims.
Other factors may include:
- Your driving record and claims history. The better your record, the lower your premium, but traffic violations and previous claims will increase your rate.
- Where you live and how much you drive. Urban areas carry more risk, from vandalism to theft and other crimes, so drivers in larger cities tend to pay more than those in rural areas or smaller towns.
- Gender and marital status. In a study by the University of Michigan, women typically get into “fender benders” while men get into more severe accidents.
- Your occupation. Retirees and remote workers get classified as “pleasure drivers” while those who commute to work use their car more often, which impacts insurance rates.
- The cost to replace the car you drive. The type of car you drive can make it a target for theft, vandalism, etc., and the more expensive the car, the more it costs to insure.
- Your credit score. This gives the company an idea of how likely you are to file a claim and what that claim might cost.
Two factors an insurance company cannot consider are your religion and race.
How is Fault Determined in Texas?
In Texas, the comparative fault statute is used to determine liability for a car accident. One driver may be at fault by 40% while the other is at fault by 60%. If you are at fault by 40% and the other driver is at fault by 60%, the insurance will pay 60% of what the policy stipulates.
How Does a No-Fault Accident Impact Car Insurance Rates in Texas?
If a car accident isn’t your fault, you can still see an increase in your premium. When the liable party’s insurance company pays for everything – your repairs, medical bills, etc. – why does your insurance company change your rates? Ultimately, car insurance is about risk.
Even though the accident wasn’t your fault, being involved in the incident makes it seem that you are more likely to be in an accident in the future. Unfortunately, there’s no law in Texas to prohibit this behavior.
Still, it’s a decision that varies between insurance companies. Some only change if you are more than 50% at fault. Other companies offer accident forgiveness programs.
Regardless, it’s better for your insurance rates if you aren’t at fault for the accident. While a minor not-at-fault accident may increase your premium a bit, being at-fault for the accident causes it to rise even further. That’s why it’s a good idea to work with an attorney who can prove that the negligent driver caused the accident.
Let an Experienced Attorney Handle the Insurance Companies
No one wants to deal with an insurance adjuster if they don’t have to. If they try to use shady tactics on you, it only makes the process more frustrating. With an experienced attorney on your side, you have someone to deal with the insurance companies so you don’t have to.
At Herbert Trial Law, our personal injury attorneys stand up for victims when insurance adjusters try to push them around. When they try to devalue or deny your claim, we make sure you receive the compensation you deserve. Schedule your free consultation with our legal team. We will look at the big picture.
- How the accident will change your life
- Whether your insurance premiums increase
- Everything you need to stabilize your life
If you were injured in a car accident that wasn’t your fault, you need an advocate ready to protect your rights and your rates. Contact our team today to schedule your consultation.