How Long Does a Car Accident Stay on Your Record?
Most drivers do their best to avoid a collision, but based on accident numbers, people can expect to be in at least one car accident during their lifetime. When an accident occurs, it can significantly impact a person’s insurance rates. Given the consequences of a collision, it is natural to wonder how long a car accident stays on your record.
Here, car accident lawyers from the Tawwater Law Firm, serving the Oklahoma City, OK, area answer some common questions regarding car accidents, driving records, and insurance rates.
How Long Does Oklahoma Keep a Car Accident on My Driving Record?
In Oklahoma, a person’s driving record is known as their MVR, or motor vehicle report. This record is maintained by the Department of Public Safety. When a driver or insurance agency requests a copy of an MVR, the data provided is limited to the previous three years. This means that any car accident, citation, or other conviction will be cleared from your record three years from the date of the incident.
Will a Car Accident Be on My Record if it Wasn’t My Fault?
When a car accident results in damage or personal injury, it needs to be reported to the police and each driver’s respective insurance company. Any accident that is reported will appear on a person’s driving record. It does not matter how minor the accident is, or whether the driver is found at-fault for the collision; it will remain on record for three years. However, it is important to mention that a driving record should indicate whether the driver was at-fault for a collision, or simply involved in the accident.
How Long Does an Accident Affect My Insurance Rates?
Technically, insurance rates can be affected as long as a car accident remains on a person’s driving record. However, in most cases insurance companies increase rates immediately following an accident and then gradually decrease them over time if the driver avoids accidents and other driving citations.
As far as insurance rates go, Oklahoma is one of only two states (along with California) that prohibits insurance companies from raising a driver’s rates after involvement in a no-fault car accident. This is why it is especially important to check that an accident is labeled appropriately when it is put on a driving record.
How Can I Check My Driving Record?
Since a driving record can directly affect car insurance rates, it is important that Oklahoma City drivers are aware of the information on their MVR. Drivers can request a copy of their MVR online (they will need the Camera ID number found on their driver’s license), or in-person at the Department of Public Safety or a tag agency in the state. Drivers should be aware there is a nominal fee to obtain these records.
Schedule a Consultation
If you have been injured in a car accident, lawyers at the Tawwater Law Firm are ready to assist you in pursuing financial compensation for accident damages. To discuss the details of your accident with our legal team, send us a message online, or call our Oklahoma City law firm at (405) 607-1400 and schedule a consultation.