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An operator may incur a surcharge for any one of these reasons:
An accident is defined as a surchargeable at-fault accident if:
Your insurance company will notify you and the Merit Rating Board (MRB) if you are determined to be more than 50 percent at fault for causing an accident. The MRB will then add the at-fault accident to your driving record. An increase to your auto insurance premium as a result of the accident depends on the terms of your insurer's merit rating plan. A merit rating plan is used by an insurance company to adjust an auto insurance premium based on the operator's driving record. Contact your insurance company or agent to find out about their merit rating plan.
Accidents outside of Massachusetts may be subject to surcharge.
Insurance companies are required to use the Massachusetts Standards of Fault to determine if the involved operator is more than 50 percent at fault in an accident.
A Bodily Injury To Others liability claim resulting from an at-fault accident will be reported to the Merit Rating Board if:
The amount of the claim payment (in excess of any applicable deductible) determines if the at-fault accident is a minor or major at-fault accident.
A citation received for a traffic law offense is surchargeable if the offense is included in the list of surchargeable traffic law offenses in Appendix A of the Safe Driver Insurance Plan (SDIP) Regulation and if the cited operator:
Major and Minor Traffic Law Offenses
Traffic law offenses are added to an operator's driving history and are used in calculating an operator's Safe Driver Insurance Plan rating. The number of surcharge points assigned to traffic law offenses is determined by the incident classification defined in the Safe Driver Insurance Plan.
For a full list of major and minor traffic law offenses, refer to Appendix A of the SDIP Regulation.
The RMV may use traffic law offenses to:
When an operator applies for an insurance policy in Massachusetts, the insurance company may request the operator's out-of-state driving record. The insurance company will forward the operator's prior out-of-state driving record to the Merit Rating Board. The information in the operator's prior record is used along with the Massachusetts driving history to determine surcharges and credits under either the Safe Driver Insurance Plan (SDIP) or the insurer's merit rating plan.