If you have been in an auto accident in Austin, it doesn’t always mean your insurance premiums will go up. But your insurance company will usually review the case.
If you are found to be at fault, your rate will probably go up. This is true, even if you were only partly at fault.
If the accident was entirely not your fault, a raise in your rate is not likely.
However, many auto insurance companies in Texas offer a safe driving discount. They reduce your monthly premium if you have not been involved in any accident for a set period of time.
If you have been in an auto accident, even if it is not your fault, you may not be eligible for the safe driving discount. If so, you may end up paying a higher premium after the accident.
Any auto accident in Texas that results in bodily injury or more than $1000 apparent property damage must be reported to the police. Auto insurance company adjusters will investigate the accident and try to to determine who is at-fault.
In Texas, if you have caused an auto accident, you may be classified as a high-risk driver. This is especially likely if you drove recklessly (e.g., street racing), or were Driving While Intoxicated and received a DWI.
You may also be classified as a high-risk driver if you receive a lot of traffic citations. Even if you paid your tickets, being caught regularly for speeding may make you high-risk.
If so, you may be required to file an SR-22 form to prove you have minimum auto insurance. SR stands for “safety responsibility.”
An SR-22 insurance certification is not insurance. It is an official document from the insurance company that says you have secured minimum auto insurance coverage. The document is filed with law enforcement and also shows your insurance coverage is up-to-date.
In Texas, if your driving privileges have been “suspended or revoked as the result of a car crash, conviction or judgment,” you must file an SR-22 with the Texas Department of Public Safety.
If you are classified as a high-risk driver in Texas, auto insurance companies may refuse to cover you. But you may still be able to get auto insurance.
The Texas Automobile Insurance Plan Association (TAIPA) offers special auto insurance policies. TAIPA policies are more expensive, and their coverage is more limited. In order to qualify, you must:
Whether you’ve been in an accident or not, make sure you understand what is expected of you when it comes to insuring your car in Texas.