Washington Car Insurance with a DUI

The Zebra
Aug. 24, 2018

If you commit DUI in Washington, your auto insurance is going to get pricier — it's just a question of how large the penalty will be. Fortunately, Washington auto insurance costs aren't swayed much by a motorist's DUI history, when measured against other American states.


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How does being convicted of DUI impact auto insurance in Washington?

In Washington, a DUI conviction can raise your annual auto insurance rate by an average of $664. That’s 54% less than the U.S. average rate increase after a DUI.


CAR INSURANCE AFTER DUI IN WASHINGTON — AVERAGE ANNUAL PREMIUM
Area Avg. rate - no DUI Avg. rate - with DUI Avg. increase after DUI
Washington $1,160.33 $1,824.64 57%
United States $1,397.11 $2,416.87 72%

Shopping for car insurance in Washington after a DUI conviction

Getting affordable car insurance after a DUI offense isn’t simple. In fact, a DUI generally results in a larger rate increase than does any other driving violation — more than reckless driving, racing, or an at-fault accident.


Cheapest car insurance with a DUI in Washington

If you're convicted of a driving under the influence violation in Washington, it’s essential to consider your insurance choices carefully. Car insurance rates after a DUI often vary greatly depending on the company. For instance, the cheapest car insurance company with a DUI in Washington, PEMCO, advertises yearly premiums 33% less than the state average insurance premium after a DUI violation. The next-most affordable option for car insurance after a DUI in Washington is Progressive, while the most expensive company is State Farm, with premiums 38% above average.


AUTO INSURANCE RATES WITH DUI IN WASHINGTON — BY COMPANY
Insurance company Avg. rate after DUI
PEMCO $1,219
Progressive $1,490
USAA $1,666
Farmers $2,102
Allstate $2,117
Liberty Mutual $2,296
American Family $2,315
GEICO $2,443
State Farm $2,525

There’s no auto insurance company in particular that offers cheap DUI car insurance. The recommended strategy to save post-DUI citation is to compare policies.

Get quotes via The Zebra or contact an insurance agent to assess the choices and find a cost-effective plan.

Read more on auto insurance after a DUI.


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Washington DUI laws

Drivers are DUI in Washington when their blood alcohol concentration measures 0.08% or higher. Commercial drivers are held to a stricter standard and are considered DUI when their BAC reads 0.04% or higher.

Drivers under 21 years old are DUI in Washington if their BAC is 0.02% or higher.


DUI penalties in Washington

The DUI lookback period in Washington State is seven years. Repeated DUI offenses within this timeframe subject offenders to harsher penalties and fines.

In addition, a BAC of 0.15% or higher, a DUI with a passenger under 16 years old, or reckless or negligent driving results in enhanced penalties.

First-time DUI offenses in Washington lead to:

  • 24 consecutive hours to 364 days in jail
  • $940.50 to $5,000 in fines
  • License suspension for 90 days
  • Possible requirement to use an interlock ignition device for at least one year

A second DUI offense in Washington results in:

  • 30 to 364 days in jail
  • $1,195.50 to $5,000 in fines
  • License revocation for two years
  • Possible requirement to use an IID for at least five years

Penalties for three or more DUI offenses in Washington are:

  • 90 to 364 days in jail
  • $2,045.50 to $5,000 in fines
  • License revocation for three years
  • Possible requirement to use an IID for at least 10 years

In addition to the above penalties, a judge may order DUI offenders an alcohol or drug education program, 24/7 Sobriety Program, victim impact program, or treatment.


DUI penalties for underage drinkers in Washington

A driver under age 21 with a BAC less than 0.08% is still DUI in Washington. Penalties include up to 90 days in jail and a fine of up to $1,000. An underage DUI offender's license may be suspended until they turn 21.

Sources and references:

https://www.courts.wa.gov/newsinfo/content/duigrid/duiGrid_20150926.pdf

https://www.dol.wa.gov/driverslicense/dui.html

https://www.edgarsnyder.com/drunk-driving/driving-alcohol-laws/washington.html

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