Question

Can car insurance discounts be retroactive?

My husband and I moved from New York to Illinois last year and needed a new auto policy since ours was from NY. We decided to stick with our prior insurance company but had to get a new agent since we were no longer living in New York. I was just recently speaking with our agent about how to lower our rate and she told me that there is an accident on my record that is keeping me from getting an accident-free discount. When I mentioned that I was a passenger in the vehicle at the time of the accident she told me that I could submit the police report and receive a discount. Am I entitled to have this discount applied retroactively and get credit for the additional money I have been paying for the last year? Is it my responsibility to ask for the discounts for which I am eligible?

Jul 14, 2016 Chicago, IL

Answer
Neil Richardson

Jul 14, 2016

While there is no guarantee that your insurance company will backdate that discount if you are able to submit the police report, it is most definitely worth making an attempt. At the very least, this will allow you to start seeing lower rates on your next bill. It sounds like the agent who originally sold the policy without notifying you of the accident dropped the ball, but mistakes like these happen more often than you might think so it's always smart to review your paperwork before you sign it. A good agent will review the necessary details of your policy, including all applicable discounts and discounts you may qualify for down the road, before you make your first payment, but it is good to ask just to be sure. It sounds like an honest mistake so I think you should have success backdating your discount if you are able to submit the police report to dispute the accident. Best of luck!

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