How to Compare Car Insurance Rates 2024
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LendingTree is compensated by companies on this site and this compensation may impact how and where offers appear on this site (such as the order). LendingTree does not include all lenders, savings products, or loan options available in the marketplace.

How Much Does Car Insurance Go Up After an Accident?

Published on:
Content was accurate at the time of publication.


Key Takeaways

  • An accident makes your car insurance go up by an average of $80 a month.
  • Erie, USAA and State Farm have the cheapest car insurance for drivers with an accident.
  • You may find a cheaper rate from a regional company or the Farm Bureau, depending on where you live.

Find the Cheapest Car Insurance Quotes in Your Area

An at-fault accident raises the average price of car insurance by 49% to $2,930 a year for full coverage, or $244 a month. For comparison, drivers with a clean record pay an average of $164 a month.

The actual amount your insurance rate goes up after an accident will largely depend on your insurance company. As an example, Erie and State Farm increase their rates by less than 30% after an at-fault accident. Meanwhile, Geico’s rates go up by an average of 72%.

Erie, USAA and State Farm are the best companies to contact for cheap car insurance quotes after an accident.

Erie is cheapest for drivers with an at-fault accident, charging an average of $1,597 a year for full coverage — this works out to $133 a month. Note, however, that Erie is only available in 12 states and the District of Columbia.

USAA has the next-cheapest rate, charging $138 a month. However, USAA is only available to the military community.

State Farm is the cheapest among large companies with no member restrictions. Its rates average $1,843 a year, or $154 a month.

Cheapest car insurance after an accident
CompanyAnnual rate with an accident Rate increase after accident
State Farm$1,84324%
Country Financial$2,33646%
American Family$2,98055%

Not counting USAA, State Farm has the cheapest car insurance for drivers with an accident in 31 states. Erie has the cheapest rates after an accident in four states and Washington D.C.

Farm Bureau affiliates have the cheapest insurance after an accident in Georgia, Kentucky and Louisiana.

Cheapest insurance after an accident by state

StateCompanyAnnual rate with an accident
AlabamaState Farm$1,234
ArizonaState Farm$1,732
ArkansasState Farm$1,383
ColoradoState Farm$1,731
ConnecticutState Farm$1,549
FloridaState Farm$2,283
GeorgiaGeorgia Farm Bureau$1,460
IdahoState Farm$752
IllinoisState Farm$1,603
IowaState Farm$1,086
KansasState Farm$1,689
KentuckyKentucky Farm Bureau$1,020
LouisianaLouisiana Farm Bureau$2,215
MaineState Farm$1,024
MarylandState Farm$2,148
MinnesotaState Farm$1,461
MississippiState Farm$1,260
MissouriState Farm$1,686
MontanaState Farm$2,384
NebraskaState Farm$1,443
NevadaState Farm$1,676
New HampshireHanover$1,036
New JerseyGeico$1,618
New MexicoState Farm$1,490
New YorkErie$1,678
North CarolinaErie$868
North DakotaState Farm$1,292
OhioState Farm$995
OklahomaState Farm$1,468
OregonState Farm$1,563
Rhode IslandTravelers$2,623
South CarolinaAuto-Owners$1,891
South DakotaState Farm$1,243
TennesseeState Farm$1,513
TexasState Farm$1,489
VermontState Farm$712
VirginiaState Farm$1,320
WashingtonState Farm$1,227
Washington D.C.Erie$2,257
West VirginiaState Farm$1,443
WyomingState Farm$1,392

Find the Cheapest Car Insurance Quotes in Your Area

Car insurance rates for teenagers go up by an average of $67 a month after an accident. The average cost of liability car insurance for a teen with an accident is $3,237 a year, or $270 a month. This is 33% higher than the average rate for teens with a clean driving record.

Erie and Mercury have the cheapest car insurance for most teens with an accident — USAA is cheapest overall, but it’s only available to the military community.

Cheapest car insurance for teenagers with an accident

CompanyAnnual rateRate increase after accident
Country Financial$2,19256%
State Farm$2,23824%
American Family$3,51949%

Insurance companies consider you riskier to insure if you have an accident or commit certain violations. As such, they add a surcharge to your rate to account for this added risk.

Surcharges typically increase your rate for three to five years. Avoiding accidents and tickets during this time shows insurance companies that you’re no longer a risky driver. Your rate comes back down when your surcharge expires.

The types of accidents that make your insurance rates go up vary slightly by state and insurance company.

Insurance rates typically go up the most after a severe at-fault accident.

You may only see a slight rate increase after a fender bender or other minor accident. The specific rate impacts will vary by state and insurance company. In New York, for example, insurance companies can’t surcharge at-fault accidents that cause less than $2,000 in injuries and damage. However, they can surcharge you if you have two or more minor accidents within three years.

The policies for raising your rates when you’re not at fault for an accident also vary by state and insurance company. Some insurance companies will consider you riskier to insure after any accident, including one you didn’t cause. In Ohio, insurance companies can’t increase your rate if you only have one not-at-fault accident in any given policy period.

Liability and collision claims usually make your insurance rates go up. But claims under your other coverages don’t automatically increase your rates.

How the major coverages in your car insurance impact your rates

Coverage typeHow it affects rates
LiabilityCovers injuries and property damage to others in a car accident you cause. Liability claims almost always increase your rates.
CollisionCovers damage to your car from a collision with another vehicle or object. A collision claim for an accident you cause usually leads to a rate increase. A collision claim for an accident caused by a hit-and-run or uninsured motorist should not increase your rate, but the policy on this varies by insurance company and state.
ComprehensiveCovers your vehicle for theft and damage from noncollision causes, including fire, flood, and falling objects. Most companies won’t increase your rates for a minor comprehensive claim, like glass repair. However, your rates may go up for major damage or theft, depending on your insurance company.
Uninsured motorist bodily injuryCovers you and your passengers for injuries caused by a driver with no insurance. These claims rarely lead to a rate increase.
Uninsured motorist property damageCovers your vehicle for damage caused by a driver with no insurance. These claims rarely lead to a rate increase.
Personal injury protection/medical paymentsCovers injuries to you and your passengers, regardless of fault. Your rate may go up if you cause the accident.

You can inquire about a claim with your insurance company before you open one. Your agent should know if a potential claim will make your rate go up. Make sure to emphasize the word “inquire.” This avoids having a claim go on your insurance record before you formally open one.

You should wait until you get your renewal notice before you switch car insurance companies after an accident.

An insurance company can’t increase your car insurance rate for an accident until your next policy period begins. About a month before then, it sends you a renewal notice showing your new rate with the accident on your record.

Once you see your new rate, you can begin getting quotes from other companies. A prior accident is one of several factors that determines your rate. The others include:

  • Your age and ZIP code
  • Your vehicle
  • Your overall driving history, in addition to the accident
  • Your credit history
  • Any discounts you may be eligible to receive

Each company weighs these factors differently and offers different discounts. Shopping around helps you find the best rate.

Accident forgiveness is a car insurance feature that can keep your rates from going up after your first accident.

Most large companies offer accident forgiveness, and many small ones do, too. You’ll usually have to pay extra for it, but some companies give it to safe drivers for free.

Progressive, for example, offers Small Accident Forgiveness to all new customers at no extra charge. Your rates won’t go up after your first claim if it’s for less than $500.

In addition, Progressive forgives your first claim of any size if you qualify for its Large Accident Forgiveness program. It’s available to customers who have been with the company for at least five years and have had no accidents or tickets during the past five years. If you don’t meet these criteria, you can add accident forgiveness to your policy for a fee.

Geico is among the other companies that offer free and paid accident forgiveness.

Free accident forgiveness is a no-brainer. Paying for it is a judgment call, since it adds a little to your car insurance rate upfront. But if you ever need it, it may end up saving you more money than it costs.

Getting accident forgiveness is a good way to avoid an insurance rate increase after an accident. Otherwise, your options are limited. If you cause a minor, noninjury accident, consider paying for the other person’s car repairs yourself. It’s also generally best to avoid small collision claims for your own car, unless someone else causes the damage.

Your insurance usually won’t go up if someone hits your car while it’s parked. However, you should ask your insurance company to make sure. Let them know that you’re only inquiring about a claim before you formally open one.

If you get insurance after an accident, the incident won’t be covered by your new policy. You’ll pay more for insurance after an at-fault accident than you would before the accident.

An accident usually stays on your insurance record for at least three years, but some companies check back for up to five years.


LendingTree uses insurance rate data from Quadrant Information Services using publicly sourced insurance company filings. Rates are based on an analysis of hundreds of thousands of car insurance quotes for a typical driver. Your own rates may be different.

Unless noted otherwise, quotes are for a full-coverage policy for a 30-year-old male with good credit who drives a 2015 Honda Civic EX. Our sample teen driver is an 18-year-old male.

Full-coverage policies include collision, comprehensive and liability coverage:

  • Bodily injury liability: $50,000 per person, $100,000 per accident
  • Property damage liability: $25,000
  • Uninsured motorist: $50,000 per person, $100,000 per accident
  • Personal injury protection
  • Collision: $500 deductible (only in states where it’s required)
  • Comprehensive: $500 deductible

*USAA is only available to current and former members of the U.S. military and their families.