Common Vehicle Insurance Issues: What Would Cause Your Insurance Company to Drop Your Policy?
While most drivers aren’t spending as much time in their cars these days as they were in January or February, they still don’t want to risk non-renewal or cancellation of their auto insurance policy. Georgia law prohibits insurers from canceling an auto policy without reason. But what reasons could lead to cancellation? Are multiple traffic incidents a factor? What if you are having trouble paying your premiums?
Here are some common reasons for cancellation or non-renewal, as well as tips for working with your insurance agent to retain coverage under these circumstances.
Non-payment of premium
In the state of Georgia, an insurer may cancel an auto insurance policy if an insured has failed to pay the premium. Most insurers offer a grace period following the due date during which payment can be made and a policy not cancelled. Each insurer is different and grace periods can range from a few days up to 30, so it is important to check your policy or call your insurance agent.
Many insurers are being more lenient during the coronavirus pandemic, recognizing that due to layoffs or furloughs some policyholders are having trouble paying on time. While some insurers have publicized blanket policies, don’t assume you are OK. Call your agent or company directly to discuss late payment alternatives such as an extended grace period or payment plan.
Too many claims or accidents is not a reason for cancellation mid-policy in Georgia, but an insurer has the right to raise your rates or refuse to renew your policy. Too many at-fault accidents, driving under the influence citations, speeding tickets and other violations could lead to a high-risk driver categorization. Regardless of fault, some insurers drop policyholders or raise rates if too many claims are filed within a short period of time. It’s best to know your insurer’s policy on evaluating multiple claims and take it into consideration when filing. Your agent might advise you to not file claims that are within a certain dollar amount of your deductible.
Fraudulent claim or application information
If you knowingly omit information about your driving record, your insurance company has the right to cancel your policy at any time. While it might be tempting to omit what seems like a minor offense in the hopes of a better rate, omission of a moving traffic violation or at-fault accident could lead to cancellation.
Likewise, if you make or aid someone else in making a fraudulent claim, your insurer has the right to cancel your policy.
If you or any person on your auto policy has had a driver’s license suspended or revoked within the last 36 months, your carrier can cancel your policy. If your teenager loses their license, your insurer may require you remove that child from the policy but still be willing to insure you and other family members.
Certain medical conditions
Drivers who develop epilepsy or heart attacks must have a physician certify their ability to safely operate a vehicle or risk losing their insurance coverage.
Make sure you have UM/UIM coverage
Now that you know what to do to avoid a cancellation or non-renewal, it’s important to make sure that you are covered for uninsured or underinsured motorists (UM/UIM). This coverage protects you if you are injured by another driver’s negligence and that driver does not have sufficient insurance to cover your damages. Insurers are required under Georgia law to offer UM/UIM up to the limits of your liability coverage. Then you choose from two options: added-on or reduced UM/UIM coverage. Hudson King recommends choosing the added-on coverage, which adds on to any coverage the UM/UIM driver has should you be in an accident and sustain damages. The cost is usually minimal and the benefit to you great. Under reduced coverage, your UM/UIM coverage is reduced by whatever amount of coverage the other driver has and might result in you having no additional coverage.
Contact the Experienced Person Injury Attorneys at Hudson King
If you or someone you love has been injured or wrongly faulted in an automobile accident, Hudson King’s team of experienced personal injury attorneys can help. Our knowledgeable and experienced team can evaluate your claim and pursue the best results in your case. Contact us today at 229-515-8585 for a free consultation.
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