Is Accident Forgiveness Worth Having?

Updated October, 2020
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Yes, accident forgiveness is worth having. It protects you from a rise in insurance rates after your first at-fault accident. On average, rates go up by 62.5% without this policy. If you've got accident forgiveness, your driving record remains clear, and you don't pay increased rates. You also continue to qualify for good driver's discounts.

What is accident forgiveness?

Accident forgiveness can be added as a policy to your auto insurance coverage. It makes it possible for your driving record to stay clean after an at-fault accident. The accident doesn't go down on your record, and your insurance premiums don't rise.

If you've got a clean driving record, some insurance providers allow you to earn accident forgiveness for free. However, other companies allow you to buy it as an upgrade if you meet certain requirements.

How to qualify for accident forgiveness

The requirements you need to qualify for this feature are typically the following:

  • A clean driving record: You can't qualify if you've had multiple accidents. This includes any number of traffic violations on your record, such as many speeding tickets or a DUI.
  • A good driver course: Some companies require that you complete good driver courses to apply for accident forgiveness.
  • A certain amount of claim-free years: Your insurance provider might require you to go 3-9 years without making a claim before you qualify for accident forgiveness.

How much does accident forgiveness cost?

Accident forgiveness rates vary based on many factors, such as the following:

  • Location
  • Car model
  • Age
  • Driving history

Although you generally get a higher rate for this feature, you're able to save an average of 30% on increased premiums after an accident.

How to claim accident forgiveness (5 steps)

Apply for your claim straight after involvement in an accident. Follow these steps:

  1. Notify the police about your accident so that you can file a formal report.
  2. Take pictures.
  3. Whilst it's clear in your mind, write down how the accident happened and the driving conditions.
  4. Speak to your insurer about Accident Forgiveness to see if you qualify or to confirm that you have this policy added to your auto insurance.
  5. Get your car towed. Your insurance potentially includes this service if you've got full coverage. Otherwise, you've got to pay extra to have your car taken to your insurer's chosen repair shop.

3 things to consider when applying for accident forgiveness

  • Apply for accident forgiveness and save hundreds of dollars by avoiding increased yearly premiums.
  • You may pay extra, but in the long run, it saves you more than you spend. Safe drivers with a clean record are forgiven for minor accidents, thus maintaining a spotless record.
  • If you currently have marks on your driving record, you can't apply for accident forgiveness. Apply again once the violations have dropped from your record to maintain your newly acquired clean record.

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