Will hitting a deer raise my insurance rates?

If you hit a deer, your auto insurance rates will likely not increase because this sort of accident doesn't count the same as hitting another vehicle or stationary object. Comprehensive coverage pays for damage to your vehicle and averages $12.33/mo.

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Leslie Kasperowicz holds a BA in Social Sciences from the University of Winnipeg. She spent several years as a Farmers Insurance CSR, gaining a solid understanding of insurance products including home, life, auto, and commercial and working directly with insurance customers to understand their needs. She has since used that knowledge in her more than ten years as a writer, largely in the insuranc...

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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

UPDATED: Jul 16, 2021

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Things to Remember

  • Hitting a deer likely won’t raise your auto insurance rates after just one incident.
  • You should contact your insurer as soon as you can after the accident happens, and document the damage and your surroundings with pictures.
  • In order for the damage caused by hitting a deer to be covered, you will need to have comprehensive coverage.

Will hitting a deer raise my insurance rates? Hitting a deer doesn’t count the same for insurance purposes as hitting another vehicle. That means it likely won’t raise your rates, but you will need to pay your deductible before insurance will pay out the claim. Learn more about the difference between collision and comprehensive auto insurance.

Should you call the auto insurance company if your car hits a deer? First, make sure you are in a safe situation — then call the police and your insurance company.

If you drive a lot during dawn and dusk when deer are most active, it’s a good idea to keep full coverage on your vehicle. Before learning more about whether hitting a deer will raise your insurance rates, enter your ZIP code above to get FREE quotes from multiple insurers.

Does car insurance go up after hitting a deer?

Will hitting a deer raise my insurance rates with Geico or State Farm? Hitting a deer with Geico or Progressive insurance (or most insurers) will not usually raise your rates.

Since hitting a deer is considered to be a random event, one claim isn’t likely to affect your car insurance rates.

Does hitting a deer go on your driving record?

Normally, a claim to your insurer makes your auto insurance rates rise. However, hitting a deer is not likely going on your driving record and counts very differently from hitting another vehicle or something stationary, such as a tree.

However, if you make multiple similar claims within a few years, that’s going to cause a spike in rates.

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How does hitting a deer affect insurance?

Will insurance cover hitting a deer? That depends on what your coverage level is.

Drivers of older vehicles may choose to keep liability-only coverage — or the state minimum required coverage. These laws, compiled here by the Insurance Information Institute if you’re curious, are there to protect other drivers. Liability is also much cheaper than full coverage.

But if you are financing your vehicle — which requires full coverage — or just choose to keep it, your insurance should cover damages from hitting a large animal.

This video from Allstate goes over some of what a comprehensive claim for auto insurance covers.

This table shows the average rates from 2011 to 2015 for the different types of auto insruance coverage. Comprehensive coverage is what will cover damage from hitting a deer or other large animal.

Average Annual U.S. Auto Insurance Rates
Type of Auto Insurance CoverageAverage Annual U.S. Auto Insurance Rates
Full Coverage$954.99
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Keep in mind that you’ll still have to pay your car insurance deductible. If it costs $1,500 to fix the damage to your car, but your comprehensive deductible is $500, you’ll have to pay that first $500 before insurance will cover the rest.


What to do after hitting a deer?

It is not illegal to hit a deer and drive off, but it’s also not something that you should do.

What do you do if you hit a deer and it runs away? If you hit a deer but it ran off, there’s not much you can do for the animal. However, there are a few things you should do.

State Farm suggests the following steps you should take after hitting an animal with your vehicle.

  1. Move your vehicle over to a safe place and turn on your hazards lights.
  2. Call the police and explain the situation.
  3. Document the accident. Take pictures of the damage, your surroundings, and any injuries that may have been sustained. If there are witnesses, take their contact information.
  4. Do not approach the animal. Wounded and scared animals may lash out.
  5. Contact your auto insurance agency and report the accident.
  6. Verify your vehicle is still safe to drive. If it isn’t, you may need to get it towed.

Basically, stay safe and contact the relevant parties.


Should you speed up to hit a deer?

This is a common misconception that a lot of people believe, but the truth is that speeding up when you’re about to hit a deer is usually a bad idea and can increase the damage to your vehicle.

It’s not recommended.

If you’re driving a lot, you probably want to make sure you have full coverage. We can help you get the best rates. Enter your ZIP code below to see rates available in your area.

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