SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 27, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Drivers pay an average of 41% more for car insurance after making a single claim, according to the 2nd annual study by insuranceQuotes.com. The national average is up three percentage points this year, compared to the 38% increase found in 2014. Massachusetts continues to peak the list of states, where just one claim leads to an average premium increase of 76%, versus 67% in 2014.
Closely following Massachusetts as the most expensive states are California (+75%) and New Jersey (+62%). The lowest post-claim increases are seen in Maryland (+22%), followed by Michigan (+23%) and Montana (+25%).
Making a second claim proves to be very costly: a driver with two claims pays over twice as much for car insurance as a claim-free driver (+93%).
"Many consumers underestimate the consequences of making claims because they can affect your rate for years," said Laura Adams, a senior analyst at insuranceQuotes.com. "If you get a premium hike for making a small claim, that could hurt your finances over the long run."
Location isn't the only factor to consider, as increases are also affected by the type of claim. Bodily injury and property damage (including collision) claims are the most expensive (+45% and +41%, respectively). Comprehensive claims (for non-collision events such as theft) are the cheapest, barely moving the needle at +2%.
To view the full study, go to:
insuranceQuotes.com's "Should I Make a Claim?" calculator is available here:
insuranceQuotes.com commissioned Quadrant Information Services to examine how claims affect car insurance premiums. Quadrant calculated rates using data from six large carriers in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Assumptions included a $2,000 claim and policy limits of $100,000 for injury liability for one person, $300,000 for all injuries and a $500 deductible on collision and comprehensive coverage.
insuranceQuotes.com provides consumers with a free, easy way to shop for and compare insurance quotes online, and delivers information about auto, home, health and life insurance and other types of insurance.
insuranceQuotes.com is part of Bankrate Insurance. Other Bankrate Insurance companies include NetQuote.com and InsureMe.com.
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Senior Director, Corporate Communications, Bankrate, Inc.