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by Michael Ponce | May 18, 2023

Usage-based insurance (UBI) programs can be relevant to a motor vehicle accident because they can provide key information about the driving locations, calls and texts, habits, and practices of the drivers involved in an accident.  Most insurance companies offer safe driving rewards and discounts if the insureds agree to enroll in UBI program. These programs sometimes are colloquially referred to as “pay how you drive” programs.   The idea is that your car insurance premiums are cheaper if you drive safer. 

UBI programs collect data through individuals’ smartphones and global positioning system (GPS) technology built into newer vehicles.  Because smartphones are so prevalent in modern society, GPS tracking can capture a litany of important driver data. Such information can include cell calls made from a car, miles driven, speed, location, levels of hard braking, and other driving patterns.  

This data potentially could be quite relevant in a motor vehicle accident.  It could provide key information on the location of a driver at a particular time, whether the driver made cell phone calls or texted while traveling in her vehicle, and whether the driver drove at excessive rates of speed or engaged in reckless driving patterns. 

Thousands of accident fatalities occur because drivers engaged in distracted driving practices. For example, texting while driving has proven to be the cause of many motor vehicle fatalities.  A usage-based insurance program that comprehensively tracks and compiles driver data may contain key information about the location of a driver when she or he placed or call or sent a text. Obviously, this information would be relevant to the question of fault in a motor vehicle accident. 

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