Can You Switch Car Insurance Companies If You Have An Open Claim?
We’re all looking for ways to get affordable auto insurance in Chester, but cheap car insurance isn’t always the best coverage and you may soon discover you’ve bought a policy from the wrong company. You might even realize this is the case when you file a claim with your current provider.
But now that the claim has been opened, are you unable to switch providers for one that is more to your liking? Many consumers are confused over whether or not they can change insurance companies while they have an open claim. If they try to do so, what kind of consequences might they face? Will this affect the claim and put in jeopardy?
Many questions with few answers. Let’s clear up some misconceptions and determine fact from fiction when it comes to switching insurers during an open claim.
Although it may seem like it might be difficult and insurance companies will do everything they can to discourage you from doing so, you may change your insurance provider at any time you wish. Nothing is stopping you from taking your business elsewhere when you’re dissatisfied with the service you’re receiving from your current insurer.
But what about your claim? The truth is, nothing there changes. Your current insurance company must still process the claim and see it through until the matter is fully resolved. In fact, they are contractually obligated to do so and must pay out any damages that are valid and owed under the terms of the policy and the claim that you’ve filed.
Whether or not you’ve decided to move on from your company should have no bearing on your current claim and they must proceed as if no change has taken place.
Of course, the claim itself may not be pay out as much as you expected or the process is already so difficult, ridiculous, and convoluted that you wish you’d never filed the claim in the first place. This is a common problem that too many policyholders encounter each and every day. You decided to go with a lesser-known company because the premiums were low and incredibly affordable.
But an accident has occurred and you’ve been forced to file a claim and every aspect of the experience has been nothing short of a nightmare. Now you know why those rates were so affordable and you regret choosing this insurer.
Luckily, you have the freedom to dump that company and go with another that has a better track record and more positive customer service reviews.
Filing Two Claims
If you’re planning to change insurance providers while you have an open claim, be sure you’re doing it for the right reasons. Some policyholders are under the mistaken impression that when they are unsatisfied with the claims process of their present company, they will change providers and file a claim with their new company.
This is outright insurance fraud and it can get you into significant trouble. You are not allowed to file a claim for the same accident with more than one insurance company. Just because you are annoyed with the timing or the outcome with one insurance provider does not empower you to change companies ant try to submit that same claim for a better result.
So while it’s perfectly acceptable to change your insurance provider in mid-claim, don’t expect your new company to also process that claim for you.
Of course, the big question now is how changing companies can affect what you pay for insurance each month. You’ve (hopefully) learned your lesson about trying to save money by going with a cut-rate policy. Now that you’re changing insurers, how will your open claim impact what you will be paying each month?
You can expect to pay more for your insurance policy with the new company. Bottom line. That’s because an open claim is visible to every insurer in the marketplace and they may deem you an elevated risk, particularly if you’re deemed the party at fault in the matter.
You’ll have a much easier time of it if you’re not at fault in the present claim. Shopping around for a new insurer in order to save money on your premiums is always a good move, but it may not do you too much good if your current claim deems you at fault for the accident. Your rates are going to go up either way.
But if you are not the responsible party in the accident and the claim finds in your favor, then your rates should remain largely unchanged.