How many auto insurance claims are too many?

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In a nutshell...
  • Filing insurance claims is a common occurrence that might need to happen based on various scenarios
  • The practices vary between insurance companies
  • The number of claims you file in a single year is a factor that insurance companies look at
  • You might want to consider handling some losses on your own to reduce the number of claims you file

Filing claims with your insurance company is a necessity sometimes. Accidents may or may not be your fault. After you have filed a certain number of claims, it’s important to look at how many is too many.

Insurance companies might start to identify you as a high-risk driver. Being identified as a high-risk driver could end up costing you more on insurance premiums. It might also make you uninsurable.

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Can insurance cancel your policy?

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One of the first things you have to look at is if your auto insurance company can cancel your policy. If they feel as though you have filed too many claims or the claims have cost them too much money, they might choose to cancel your policy.

Some insurance companies might choose to cancel your policy. Others might decide not to renew your policy.

If such a thing happens, you then have to look at getting insurance from another company.

If you are denied insurance by an insurance company, it is typically from a standard tier. You can then ask about high-risk insurance, which will cost you more money.

If none of the insurance companies will insure you, then you can look at state automobile insurance plans. States that legally mandate that you have insurance will have programs to help you get the required level of auto insurance.

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How severe are the claims?

Many insurance companies look at the severity of the claims more than anything else. If the claims resulted in a significant amount of property damage and/or high medical payments, it is going to weigh heavier on the future cost of insurance.

One major claim could end up affecting your insurance premiums significantly more than three or four minor claims.

Some of the most severe claims include:

  • Total car replacement
  • Medical bills for multiple people
  • Multiple counts of property damage

If you cost the insurance too much money, they might decide that it is no longer in their best financial interest to continue insuring you.

Who was at fault for the accident?

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Some accidents are unavoidable. It’s important to look at who was at fault for the different accidents that lead you to file claims. Comprehensive claims, such as hail hitting your car or road debris hitting your windshield might be unavoidable.

Other accidents, such as you rear-ending a vehicle, are preventable. If you are a risky driver, insurance companies will see it within the claims you file.

If you were ticketed as a result of the accident, you were likely at fault and breaking the law.

If you have had multiple accidents that were your fault, it will be noted on your driving record. At-fault accidents will result in higher insurance premiums. You also run the risk of your auto insurance company choosing not to insure you.

How to Minimize the Claims You File

If you have filed a claim (or several claims) in the past year, you might want to consider not filing another claim. There might always be the fear that if you file a claim, your premium will go up.

In some instances, you have to file a claim. Failure to report an accident to your insurance company could result in them refusing to honor the policy.

Additionally, if you wait and the other driver sues, your insurance company might not be able to gather enough evidence to sufficiently represent you.

However, there are plenty of situations where it is more cost effective for you to handle the repairs on your own.

The scenarios that you might get into that don’t involve hitting another driver don’t always have to be reported to insurance.

There is no way to know for sure how many insurance claims are too many. Your goal should be to keep them to a minimum. If you have a large number of claims, you will be identified as a high-risk driver.

Work with your insurance company to learn about the claims where you are identified as at-fault and what you can do to keep your insurance costs as affordable as possible.

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