After experiencing the effects of a surprise injury – whether from an automobile accident, an intentional act of violence, a defective product, or any other situation in which you were injured by the wrongful actions of another – you are no doubt dealing with a host of confusing questions that you never wanted to confront. One question that often arises when a person has suffered a significant injury due to the negligence, recklessness, or intentional act of another is whether filing a personal injury lawsuit will affect his or her own insurance rates. It’s a fair question – especially in an economic climate where many people are seeing their health and auto insurance rates skyrocket with each passing year – but, generally, if you have been injured due to another’s fault, your insurance rates will not be affected.
Your Liability Insurance Premiums Should Not Rise Based on Another’s Negligence
It is the case that, when you are found to be at fault in causing an accident for which you or another party makes a claim on your liability insurance policy, one likely outcome is that your liability insurance rates could rise. The logic there is clear: an insurance company in the business of paying out claims based on your liability will of course need to incorporate your potential for liability as evidenced by an accident that you caused in calculating the cost of future premiums necessary for your coverage. After all, a person who is responsible for causing five accidents a year is a much more costly investment for an insurance company than a person who has no record of causing an accident.
But, if you are pursuing a personal injury suit against another party, by definition you are making the argument that the other party and not you was primarily responsible for causing the accident, based on their negligence, recklessness, or intentional act. The fact that you happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time through no fault of your own should not affect how an insurance company views you as a liability.
Counterclaims and Contributory Negligence
That said, it is possible that a defendant could make a counterclaim for damages and/or make the argument that was caused by your own contributory negligence. You should speak with an attorney about this possibility, but whether or not you file a personal injury lawsuit may not ultimately make a difference either way for your premiums. This is the case because the counterclaim could have been brought against you regardless of whether you brought a claim, and, if it is determined that you caused the accident, you would be in the position of making a claim on your own insurance anyway.
Health Insurance Premiums Will Not Rise as a Result of a Lawsuit
With regard to health insurance premiums, those are also unlikely to be affected by your filing a personal injury claim. In addition to the fact that filing a personal injury claim is arguing that another party is responsible for your injuries and not you (and thus that they and/or the insurers should pay for your medical bills, among other things), health insurance rates are generally not based on individual claims but rather on market conditions.
Contact a Utah Personal Injury Attorney You Can Trust
Steve Jensen is a personal injury attorney based in Utah committed to seeking justice on behalf of plaintiffs who have suffered serious injury. With years of experience in obtaining significant settlements and verdicts for plaintiffs at one of the largest personal injury firms in Utah, Steve has the resources and skills to work on your behalf in pursuing justice in your personal injury claim. Contact him today to set up a consultation to discuss your personal injury matter and your best options for relief.