Elijah Black is a Greenville, South Carolina native with a B.A. English from Coastal Carolina University. He is a fiction writer and also works as a freelance writer and editor. He’s worked as a Production Assistant for WYFF 4 and has been published in several publications and websites across the United States.

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Rachael Brennan has been working in the insurance industry since 2006 when she began working as a licensed insurance representative for 21st Century Insurance, during which time she earned her Property and Casualty license in all 50 states. After several years she expanded her insurance expertise, earning her license in Health and AD&D insurance as well. She has worked for small health in...

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Reviewed by Rachael Brennan
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Jun 3, 2021

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Don't Forget These Facts

  • Accidents can stay on your driving record for three to five years
  • As long as accidents are on your driving history, you’ll pay higher than average rates
  • You could pay up to 40% more per year for car insurance if you have an accident on your record

How long does an accident stay on your record? Most auto insurance companies look back three to ten years to see if you’re a high-risk driver. If you have too many infractions, such as accidents, you’ll have to deal with SR-22 insurance costs.

Our guide explains how long an accident stays in your record and what you can do to lower auto insurance rates.

Continue reading to learn how long accidents remain on your driving history and use our free comparison tool to get affordable SR-22 insurance quotes from the top companies in your local area. . Enter your ZIP code above to get started.

How long does an accident stay on your record?

Accidents and other driving violations can stay on your driving record for three to five years, depending on the state. However, DUIs can remain on your driving record for about ten years.

Read on to see examples of how different states respond to accidents on a driver’s record.

How long does an accident stay on your record in California?

Accidents remain on a driver’s history for three years in California. DUIs stay on your driving record for ten years in the state of California.

How long does an accident stay on your record in Texas?

Expect the same in Texas. An accident will stay on your driving record for three years. Meanwhile, DUIs can remain on your driving history for five to ten years, depending on the number of offenses.

Can an accident be removed from my driving record?

The short answer is no. The only way an infraction can be removed is by waiting out the three to ten years.

If you go to court and win your dispute, you’ll still have an accident on the Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange (C.L.U.E.). This record-keeping organization holds onto your auto insurance history.

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When does auto insurance go up after an accident?

You may see an increase when you want to renew your auto insurance. Some states allow car insurance companies to increase rates even if you weren’t at fault in an accident.

Minor fender benders aren’t significant concerns, but filing claims drive up your auto insurance rates.

Let’s look at how accidents affect the average auto insurance rates of the best auto insurance companies in the United States.

Average Annual Rates by Driving Record
CompanyAverage Annual Rates With Clean recordAverage Annual Rates With 1 speeding violationAverage Annual Rates With 1 accidentAverage Annual Rates With 1 DUI
Liberty Mutual$904$1,260$1,571$1,571
USAA$1,531$1,868$1,902$2,827
State Farm$2,256$2,418$2,580$2,418
GEICO$2,316$2,767$3,665$5,662
Nationwide$2,526$3,051$3,638$4,698
Farmers$3,434$3,434$4,437$4,326
Progressive$3,740$4,147$4,820$4,616
Allstate$3,925$4,485$4,642$5,635
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Accidents increase car insurance rates by more than $300 at the best companies. Sometimes, you’ll end up paying 40% more for car insurance.

If you didn’t have an accident before your policy, some auto insurance companies will likely forgive the first accident in a perk called Accident Forgiveness.

When your rates do go up because of an accident, it will affect your auto insurance costs for at least three years.

How do you lower auto insurance rates with an accident on your record?

Target car insurance discounts. Cheap SR-22 insurance rates are only eligible through auto insurance discounts.

Equipment-related discounts, like anti-theft and safety features, can help you save about 15% on auto insurance. Always ask which discounts you qualify for before you buy SR-22 insurance to get the best rates.

How Long an Accident Stays on Your Driving Record: What’s the bottom line?

If you have an accident on your driving record, your auto insurance rates will increase. SR-22 insurance rates aren’t too far from accident-based auto insurance rates.

Some car insurance companies have an Accident Forgiveness perk, and your rates won’t go up after an accident. However, accidents are recorded on C.L.U.E. and your local DMV.

Now that you know more about how long accidents stay on your record, use our free online quote tool to compare multiple companies near you.