While a DUI is not great, it is not a death sentence for car insurance
By this question, we do not mean there are specific companies that cater to DUI recipients more than others. We are, however, referring to the way your insurance changes after you receive DUI from both your insurance company and your state. You can certainly expect your rate to jump up after a DUI conviction as well as a few changes with your relationship with your state DMV department. Let’s break it down.
Understandably so, your insurance company will raise your rates after you are convicted of a DUI. Insurance companies are all about anticipating and avoiding risks and driving impaired is the exact opposite of that. According to studies by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, approximately one-third of all traffic fatalities are caused by intoxicated drivers. Now, to an insurance company, that’s a lot of bodily injury, property damage, and death benefits that have to be paid out. Moreover, if their client (i.e., the drunk driver) as another liability-type policy with them that protects them in the event they are sued, the insurance company might be on the hook again.
So, looking at our chart below, you can see why a DUI conviction is significantly higher than any other notable violation. In addition to having your rate jump up, you can expect all safe/good driver discounts to fall off your policy. Which, depending on your insurance company, can have heavy implications.
|Accident/Violation||Avg Annual Premium||Increase in Premium|
|Cell Phone Violation||$1,354||$31|
|Texting while Driving||$1,354||$32|
|Speeding 11 - 15 MPH Over Limit||$1,604||$282|
|In 65 MPH Zone||$1,710||$388|
Your rate isn’t the only thing that can change after you are charged with a DUI. It also changes your relationship as a whole with your insurance company and with your state DMV department.
Depending on your insurance company and your previous driving record, your insurance company might non-renew your policy because of the risk you pose. By this, we mean your insurance company will decline to cover you for another 6 months or whatever your policy length was. Moreover, while you have a DUI on your driving record, you will be ineligible for some discounts such as a good driver.
After a DUI or other major driving convictions, the state will usually require you to fill out an SR-22 (or FR-22). This form is a certificate of financial responsibility that proves you have purchased at least the minimum amount of car insurance required by your state. Most of the time, your insurance company will file these for you (usually for a fee) but if they don't, you would need to speak with your state's DMV department.
No matter what, you’ll have to endure a higher premium than you had before for at least 3 years. In some states, such as California, a DUI will stay on your record for 10 years. Still, you have the option of looking at companies that are often referred to as “non-standard companies.” These companies cater to high-risk drivers which, if you have a DUI, you’re often considered one. You can compare all kinds of insurance companies here.
Although you should expect your insurance to jump up, having a DUI conviction doesn’t mean you will never be able to get insured again. Shopping around frequently with non-standard companies and waiting out your convictions are two good ways to help lessen the burden of a DUI.