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Insurance Claims

Will making an insurance claim affect my insurance rates?

There are 2 types of claims that can be made: Collision and Comprehensive.

Here are some commonly filed claims that do Not affect insurance premiums per North Carolina state law:

Collision-type Claims: Vehicle was parked when damaged (even if you didn’t catch the person who hit it), and if someone does a hit-and-run against you.
Comprehensive-type Claims: Items falling off another vehicle and hitting your vehicle, Animal collisions, Vandalism, Acts of Nature (pinecone falls and damages vehicle, water, hail, fire), Theft, etc.

For almost everybody (excluding businesses and people with very rare high-risk insurance policies, etc.) the only way an insurance claim can affect your insurance rates for policies written in North Carolina are if BOTH of these requirements are met.
• A collision-type claim (so comprehensive claims automatically don’t affect insurance rates)
• that is at least 51% or more your fault

So if any of those requirements are not satisfied, for almost every single situation, your rates will not be affected.

See Department of Insurance website for proof Here.

How is a vehicle determined to be a total loss by an insurance company?

The owner of CarsMetrics comes from an insurance background (with the inside info!) so this is an easy question to answer. A vehicle is deemed a total loss if the dollar amount of the repair exceeds the “threshold” for repairs set by the insurance company. This threshold usually ranges from 75%-100% of the valuation of the vehicle (not the blue-book, although the blue book is usually a decent ballpark for the valuation). The valuation is always completed by a non-biased 3rd party company.

Will the dollar amount effect my insurance rate?

Per North Carolina state law (NCGS 58-36-65 and 58-36-75) insurance rate increases are as follows:

1 SDIP Point – 30% rate increase – AT FAULT accident of $2,300 or less in total collision damage -OR- $1,800 or less of bodily injury
2 SDIP Points – 45% rate increase – AT FAULT accident of Over $2,300 but less than $3,850 in total collision damage
3 SDIP Points – 60% rate increase – AT FAULT accident of OVER $3,850

See Source Here.

Accident Forgivness

North Carolina policies have First Accident Forgiveness built into them by law. To have your first accident forgiven from an insurance rate increase the accident must meet ALL of these criteria:
1. A “Minor Accident” – (At fault + less than $2,300 + No bodily injury/death)

2. No convicted tickets because of accident

3. No licensed people in household has 1 or more convicted tickets OR 1 or more at-fault accidents in the past 3 years from your most recent policy/renewal 

4. Insurance MAY require you to have been covered for six continuous months

See Source Here.

Do I Have To Use The Shop My Insurance Company Suggests?

North Carolina General Stature states, “(i) the claimant is under no obligation to use the (insurance) recommended repair service, (ii) the claimant may use the repair service of the claimant’s choice.”

You have the right to have any body shop you want to do the work on your vehicle (North Carolina General Statute 58-3-180). Insurance companies get a discount when you go to one of their partner shops, and in return they push customers to those shops to save money. Sometimes the insurance companies can really pressure you from what we’ve seen.

Just remember you get to pick where you want your vehicle repaired in North Carolina.
See Source Here.