It’s common knowledge that a car accident can affect insurance premiums rise. But in the state of New York, drivers have a few protections against this following certain types of accidents or claims.
For example, in Long Island, accidents that didn’t lead to a great deal of property damage or injury don’t have fault recorded as part of the Department of Motor Vehicles’ (DMV) record. This prevents premium increases that may occur in other states where filing against liability insurance is the norm.
Speak to a Lawyer About Your Car Accident
At the same time, several situations that can cause car insurance premiums to rise after a car accident. The specifics depend entirely on the insurance carrier you use and whether your accident involved any special circumstances.
If you have concerns about the consequences of an accident, especially one that has left you with medical bills your no-fault personal injury protection (PIP) insurance can’t cover, don’t hesitate to speak with an experienced car accident lawyer on Long Island.
Schedule a free, no-obligation case review with Carner & DeVita today when you call 631-543-7070 or contact us online.
When Can a Car Accident Affect Insurance Premiums Rising in New York?
New York state law prohibits a non-commercial motor vehicle insurance carrier from increasing the cost of insurance premiums (adding a surcharge) after most types of minor accidents.
Specifically, New York Consolidated Laws § 2335 mentions the following situations where an insurer is not allowed to increase your rates:
- Any accident that was filed solely under your comprehensive coverage.
- Any accident where the damages totaled less than $2,000 and there were no deaths or physical injuries.
- Any temporary license suspension related to a traffic or criminal law violation that will be removed once the driver performs a certain act, such as paying off a fine.
- Any accident that occurred while the driver was covered by a commercial insurance policy, provided that the accident wasn’t caused by an intentional act or gross negligence.
Another protection § 2335 offers is that an insurance carrier can’t raise your rates after certain traffic infractions unless those infractions occurred just before the policy coverage began. The specific timeframe is that a conviction for a traffic infraction must have occurred within the 36 months ending just before the start of three months before your effective policy date.
However, the law makes it clear that these protections go away after two or more accidents have occurred within New York’s three-year lookback period.
How Long Can a Car Accident Affect Insurance Rates?
The New York DMV only maintains records of your accidents for three years. If an accident has been on your record for longer than three years, it will disappear on January 1 of the following year.
Some accidents remain on your record for longer, especially if they involve criminal activity, reckless conduct, or death because of gross negligence or an intentional act.
Insurance companies vary on how long of a period they use to determine their premiums, but most tend towards using a three-year lookback period except in extreme circumstances.
How Much Might My Premiums Go up After a Long Island Car Accident?
If you have an accident that an insurer is legally allowed to use to justify a premium surcharge, then your insurance premiums aren’t likely to go up by much. In the state of New York, the average increase is just 12%, according to a study by Bankrate.com. This correlates to a $146 average increase for your yearly premium costs.
Get Answers from a Long Island Car Accident Lawyer
New York state laws offer a lot of protections for Long Islanders, but some people can still end up in dire situations. If you’re left with hefty medical bills after filing PIP, are being accused of causing a serious injury, or have other legal questions about a recent accident, don’t hesitate to talk to a car accident attorney in Long Island.
Carner & DeVita has provided knowledgeable legal counsel to Long Island injury victims for over 50 years, and we are prepared to assist with your case. Call us today at 631-543-7070 or contact us online to speak to an experienced Long Island car accident attorney during a free, no-obligation consultation.