How can I check my auto insurance claims history?

Auto insurance companies keep digital records of your insurance profile, including claims, for up to seven years and you can access these records by asking for them. You can also go through consumer reporting agency LexisNexis.

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Rachel Bodine graduated from college with a BA in English. She has since worked as a Feature Writer in the insurance industry and gained a deep knowledge of state and countrywide insurance laws and rates. Her research and writing focus on helping readers understand their insurance coverage and how to find savings. Her expert advice on insurance has been featured on sites like PhotoEnforced, All...

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Written by Rachel Bodine
Feature Writer Rachel Bodine

Dan Walker graduated with a BS in Administrative Management in 2005 and has been working in his family’s insurance agency, FCI Agency, for 15 years (BBB A+). He is licensed as an agent to write property and casualty insurance, including home, auto, umbrella, and dwelling fire insurance. He’s also been featured on sites like Reviews.com and Safeco. He reviews content, ensuring that ex...

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Reviewed by Daniel Walker
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent Daniel Walker

UPDATED: Jul 5, 2022

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Things to remember...

  • You might need to provide information about your claims history when getting auto insurance quotes so companies can determine your risk level
  • One way to provide proof of your claims history to an insurer is to ask your insurer for a letter of experience
  • If you don’t want to contact your insurance company, you can get your claims history by ordering your C.L.U.E. report

Auto insurers use your claims history to determine your rates. Here’s why insurance companies look at your claims history, what a letter of experience is, how your past claims affect your rates, how long claims affect your rates, and how to order your claims history outside of your insurance company. 

Check Your Auto Insurance Claims History 

Having access to past claims records means you’ll know whether your auto insurance payments will be on the higher side or the lower side, giving you a better idea of how much you’ll need to budget for car insurance every month. It can also help you see if there are errors or omissions in your profile that are holding your rates high. These might include accidents you were originally deemed at fault for but which were later determined to be not your fault. 

If you haven’t done it before, you might be wondering how to check your insurance history or how to get your insurance claim history report.

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Why do insurance companies look at your claims history?

You probably already know that insurance companies check your driving record when assessing your insurance rates. But auto insurers also look at your claims history to determine your personal rates. Since insurance companies can’t reasonably follow drivers around to see if they’re driving responsibly, the solution is to base risk and rates on the driver’s past driving and claims history.

By looking at your claims history, your insurance company can put you in the right risk group.

What is a letter of experience?

A letter of experience is a document that shows detailed information about your policy with a company and the claims they’ve investigated and settled. So, what exactly does a letter of experience contain? 

A letter of experience contains the following information:

  • Name insured on the policy
  • Policy number
  • Current status of the policy
  • The start date of the policy
  • The termination date of the policy
  • Date of claim
  • Type of claim being filed
  • Fault determination
  • The driver who was operating the vehicle
  • Total payout for each coverage
  • Injuries claimed

The letter of experience has to be printed on company letterhead and signed by an authorized representative. It contains all the information that the carrier needs to assess your rates.

How do past claims affect your future insurance rates?

If you’ve never been in an accident or been in a situation where you had to file a damage claim, you have nothing to worry about as far as your claims history.

If you’ve had at-fault claims or you’ve been convicted of infractions, you won’t qualify for the lowest-priced risk class. If your claims are all old, you might qualify as a low-risk driver.

Your risk affects your rates, but so do the surcharges applied for each claim and each ticket. An auto insurance surcharge is a fee added to your insurance premium, typically because of a ticket or at-fault accident. Late payments or coverage lapses could mean an added surcharge also. 

How long do claims stay on your record?

Claims will remain on your auto insurance history for seven years, but accident claims will usually only affect your rates for 36 months. After that period is over, any surcharge applied will automatically fall off.

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Is there another way to request information on your claims history?

If you don’t want to contact your insurance company or the company has shut down, you can order your Claims Loss Underwriting Exchange report directly through consumer reporting agency, LexisNexis.

This is free insurance history check and it can be helpful when applying for a job and when you have to disclose accidents so you can get a new insurance policy. You can order your C.L.U.E. report by visiting the company’s website or calling the toll-free number to order it by phone. You’ll have 30-day access to your report online, but you’ll be able to download and save it to your computer if you want.

If you find that anything is incorrect on your C.L.U.E. report, you can dispute it through LexisNexis.

Obviously, the easiest way to check your claims history is through your insurance company, but if you can’t, this is the next best thing.

Benefits of Knowing Your Claims History

Knowing your claims history ahead of time can give you peace of mind when shopping for new insurance. You can rest assured you’ll get the best possible rates because insurance companies don’t see you as a high risk.

If you have a short claims history or no claims history at all, you’ll be classified as low risk and you’ll get the best rates on your auto insurance. Once you know your claims history, you can confidently begin searching for a new auto insurance company that’s right for you.

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