In a 2017 report, more than 2.5 million adults were hospitalized because of no fatal injuries¹. There’s no way to prevent accidents, but you can take steps to help prepare for them. Having personal accident insurance gives you another layer of protection to deal with the unexpected costs and hassles associated with getting into an accident or having an accidental injury.
How much does insurance typically go up after an accident? Accident insurance isn’t medical insurance, but it can help supplement the medical insurance you have and give you the money that you need to pay for additional costs related to the accident that your medical insurance won’t typically cover. Medical insurance will cover the cost of your medical care from an accident but it typically won’t cover things like lost wages if you can’t work, private ambulance transportation, or medical devices that you might need during your recovery. Accident insurance will give you a lump sum of cash that you can use to pay your bills while you are recovering from the accident and can’t work.
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Most of the time when people are thinking about protecting themselves from unexpected expenses after an accident they may only think about the cost of medical care. But if you have an accident that leaves you with a broken arm, a spinal injury, or another serious injury which would prevent you from working for a long time you would also need to worry about how you would pay for bills, mortgage or rent, food, and other living expenses. Accident insurance can help protect you from those costs by paying out a lump sum of money typically based on the type of injury you have and the severity of that injury. That lump sum of money can be used for any living expenses or other expenses related or not to the injury. Accident insurance shouldn’t take the place of medical insurance, but it can be used to complement and help pay for unexpected medical insurance cost beyond what your medical insurance typically covers.
Accidents can sometimes affect insurance rates, but that usually affects auto insurance². Auto insurance rates typically go up after you’ve had an accident in certain circumstances³.
While it’s always best to do whatever you can to avoid an accident, if you do have an accident and you’re worried about your insurance rates going up, there are things that you can do to help keep your premiums as low as possible like:
Increase your deductible: If you choose insurance that has a higher deductible you may be able to keep the same coverage you had without an increased premium cost since you are agreeing to pay more of the direct costs of an accident if you have another accident.
Shop around: Don’t be afraid of shopping around to get the best price on the coverage that works for you. Even if you have filed insurance claims that doesn’t mean that you will necessarily get a high quote from another insurance company. Compare rates and coverages and you may be able to get a better deal with another insurance company.
Urgent care cost without insurance
A visit to an urgent care facility for treatment after an accident may cost less than a visit to emergency room, but don’t expect your medical insurance to cover all the costs⁴. Urgent care costs without insurance can still be out of reach for people who live paycheck to paycheck or don’t have a lot of savings. You may need to pay for medications, and other out of pocket costs yourself. You also may find that your insurance won’t typically cover the cost of an ambulance if you needed an ambulance to get to the urgent care, or if you need to be admitted to the hospital and need to take an ambulance to get to the hospital from the urgent care facility.
Most ambulance companies these days are private companies who charge fees for transporting injured or sick people. Some ambulance bills can run up to thousands of dollars that you will likely need to pay out of pocket⁵. And when you need medical care right away or you’re being transported from urgent care to the hospital it’s not like you can take your time, compare rates, and choose the ambulance with the lowest cost.
The cost of fees for medication, ambulance fees, and the deductible for your medical insurance can be hard to cover if you don’t have a lot of savings and you’re too sick or injured to work for a time. Supplemental personal accident insurance will typically pay you cash to help you pay for the unexpected expenses that your medical insurance won’t typically cover or to help cover the cost of your medical insurance deductible.
Football & soccer injuries and cost
Football and soccer related injuries are common. Both football and soccer score in the top 10 of the activities that had the most injuries in 2019⁶. There were almost 300,000 injuries caused by playing football, and almost 200,000 caused by playing soccer⁷. The costs of treating common injuries caused by these two sports, leg fractures and arm fractures, is usually several thousand dollars. According to a 2014 study, in children and adolescents a broken leg can cost up to $4000 or more to treat, while a broken arm can cost over $2000 to treat. In adults a broken leg can cost around $3000 to treat while a broken arm can cost over $7000 to treat⁸, not including peripheral costs like loss of wages from being unable to work.
Those costs don’t typically include the costs of paying the deductible for medical insurance, the ambulance transportation, medication, adaptive devices like crutches or walkers, and medication or over the counter medications. It also doesn’t typically include costs associated with hospital stays or surgeries that may be needed for complicated fractures. Accident insurance can help make those additional costs more affordable.
Difference between Occupational Accident Insurance (OAI) and Workers Comp insurance
What about Worker’s Comp or Occupational Accident Insurance? It’s true that both of these types of insurance can help pay for some medical costs, but accident insurance is still a smart backup to have because both of these types of plans typically offer limited coverage. If you are injured on the job and you’re classified as an employee then Worker’s Comp will pay for your medical bills and any direct care that you need, but it won’t typically pay for physical therapy or some of the other out of pocket costs associated with an injury. If you are an independent contractor and you have Occupational Accident Insurance that OAI insurance basically covers the same things that Worker’s Comp would cover, leaving you responsible for some of the costs related to the injury even if the injury wasn’t your fault⁹.
Individual accident insurance
Supplemental accident insurance is still something you should have so that you don’t get stuck paying a lot of extra out of pocket costs when you can’t work. The money that you get paid after an accident when you have accident insurance is cash that you can use for any expense. You can use it to pay for medical costs, but you can also use it for your day-to-day expenses like bills, groceries, and your mortgage or rent. When you’re injured and out of work that cash infusion can help ensure that you don’t end up in tough financial spot because of an accident. Expenses can add up fast when you are living paycheck to paycheck and those paychecks stop because you are injured on the job.
Accident insurance coverage & insights
If you are looking for more information on Accident Insurance, Guardian Direct® has many resources that you can use to help make an informed decision.
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GUARDIAN DIRECT ACCIDENT INSURANCE IS NOT CURRENTLY SOLD OR OFFERED IN THE STATE OF COLORADO.
Individual Accident Insurance products are underwritten by The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, New York, New York. Products are not available in all states. Policy limitations and exclusions apply. The actual limitations and exclusions that apply to your Accident Plan are governed by the policy forms approved for use in your state. Please refer to your policy for a complete list of limitations and exclusions. In the event of a conflict between this document and the language stated in your Guardian insurance policy, the language of the policy shall control. This policy provides limited benefits only. Rates are guaranteed for one year for your policy of benefits initially selected. Policies renew annually up to age 90. Accident Individual Policy Form IP- Accident: IP-ACC-16 et. a
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https://www.debt.org/medical/emergency-room-urgent-care-costs, accessed February 2021
https://www.iii.org/fact-statistic/facts-statistics-sports-injuries, accessed February 2021
https://www.iii.org/fact-statistic/facts-statistics-sports-injuries, accessed February 2021
https://aspe.hhs.gov/report/common-sports-injuries-incidence-and-average-charges, accessed February 2021
https://www.gilbertsrisksolutions.com/occupational-accident-insurance-vs-workers-compensation-insurance, accessed February 2021