Yes, Geico offers accident forgiveness in 47 states and the District of Columbia, with the exceptions being California, Connecticut, and Massachusetts. Geico accident forgiveness protects you from increases to your car insurance premium after your first at-fault accident. The accident forgiveness feature may only be used once. How much your premium would rise without accident forgiveness depends on your state, driving record and claim payment amount. The increase could range from 2% to 50%, or even more for a bodily injury claim.
How to Get Geico Accident Forgiveness
There are two ways to get Geico accident forgiveness. The first is to earn it as a free upgrade to your Geico car insurance policy. Policyholders who are 21 years of age or older can earn the upgrade by being accident-free for at least five years.
The second way to get Geico accident forgiveness is to purchase accident forgiveness as a supplemental coverage option. To purchase this protection, policyholders must meet minimum driving-record requirements. However, Geico does not specify what these minimum requirements are on its website, as the rules and coverage terms vary by state.
You should get accident forgiveness if it’s included at no extra cost or if the added peace of mind outweighs the price, especially for any high-risk drivers on your policy. Accident forgiveness car insurance is available from many insurers and usually prevents one at-fault accident from increasing your premium every three years.… read full answer
Some car insurance companies include accident forgiveness as a free loyalty perk for long-time customers. Others charge extra for it. And if it’s only available for purchase, you should carefully weigh its costs and benefits in the context of your specific circumstances to determine whether or not purchasing accident forgiveness is worth it.
When It Might Be Worth It to Pay for Accident Forgiveness
You are a high-risk driver or have a history of at-fault accidents or claims.
You have a teen driver on your policy.
You drive more miles than the average driver.
You live in an area with plenty of traffic and accidents.
Your premium would increase significantly if you got into an at-fault accident.
Part of determining whether accident forgiveness is worth it is to consider the alternatives. An at-fault accident will raise car insurance premiums by 20% to 40% on average. The exact increase depends on the company, location, and the amount the insurer has to pay for the accident. In most cases, this price increase will remain for three years. However, an at-fault accident can sometimes disqualify you from a good driver discount for 5-10 years, costing you extra.
The types of drivers on your policy are important, too. High-risk and young drivers are especially likely to need accident forgiveness. However, it’s important to note that many insurers require a few years of driving experience without accidents in order to qualify for accident forgiveness. So you should be sure to read the fine print to see if you and other named drivers on your policy are eligible.
Drivers should also consider risk factors besides age. For instance, drivers who live in areas with poor road conditions and high accident rates are more likely to need accident forgiveness. More hours on the road means a higher chance of causing an accident as well. Similarly, driving at night or while tired is particularly risky.
In short, customers should be honest about their risk factors and driving habits when deciding whether or not to get accident forgiveness. Drivers should also be aware of the nuances of their insurer’s accident forgiveness policy.
Regardless of whether you are a safe or risky driver, remember that accident forgiveness programs have different exceptions. Some do not forgive new drivers’ accidents. Others still raise rates if an accident is deemed intentional, which sometimes includes DUI-related crashes.
If you are considering purchasing accident forgiveness car insurance, it’s best to compare quotes with and without accident forgiveness. Then, compare the additional cost of accident forgiveness with how much your premium would increase if you cause an accident. Finally, consider your personal circumstances and whether the peace of mind of accident forgiveness is worth the expense.
No, you cannot add accident forgiveness after an accident in order to get that same accident forgiven. Accident forgiveness is designed to be purchased or earned in advance, so it cannot be applied retroactively after an accident.
If you recently had an at-fault accident and want to buy accident forgiveness for future crashes, some insurers will allow you to purchase an accident-forgiveness add-on. For example, Allstate offers Gold and Platinum auto insurance packages, which are available at an additional cost and provide accident forgiveness with no eligibility requirements. On the other hand, accident forgiveness from insurers like Progressive and State Farm requires years of a clean driving record, meaning you cannot get it soon after an accident.… read full answer
If you don’t have accident forgiveness already, you will likely be stuck paying increased premiums after an at-fault accident. However, having an at-fault accident is a good time to compare quotes, since every insurer will raise your premium by a different amount after an accident. And keep in mind that for small amounts of damage, it might be cheaper to pay for repairs yourself than to file a claim and increase your insurance costs in the long-run.
Accident forgiveness eligibility varies by state and insurer, so call your agent or insurance company if you’re wondering whether you qualify. And if you are paying higher rates due to an at-fault accident, check out WalletHub’s guides to Switching Car Insurance Companies and Car Insurance Discounts.
Accident forgiveness resets after 3-5 years with most insurance companies. Loyalty-based accident forgiveness, which does not cost extra, normally requires drivers to go five years without at-fault accidents to get an accident forgiven, while accident forgiveness policies that drivers can purchase usually take three years to reset. Timeframes vary by insurance company, though.… read full answer
How Long Accident Forgiveness Takes to Reset, by Company
The time it takes for accident forgiveness to reset can differ from the time it takes to qualify for accident forgiveness originally. For instance, although Progressive accident forgiveness resets after three years, drivers must be a Progressive customer for five years to qualify in the first place.
Policies from the same company aren’t always handled the same way, either. For example, Allstate’s Gold auto insurance package includes accident forgiveness that resets every three years, while its Platinum package forgives an unlimited number of accidents.
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