Your driving record plays an important role in determining your rates for car insurance. A prior conviction for driving under the influence (DUI) or driving while intoxicated (DWI) suggests you have a risky driving history. Since auto insurance rates depend on what your insurer judges your risk of being in an accident, DUIs and DWIs lead to higher car insurance rates. Typically, a DUI can increase an average premium by a few hundred dollars.
High Risk Driver Classification
A DUI offense will classify you as a high risk driver, which could result in one of the following consequences:
- Your car insurance rates will increase
- You will have to purchase “high risk” insurance which will be more expensive
- Your existing car insurance policy will be cancelled
Increased insurance rates
The chart below shows the annual premium increase for major traffic violations (such as a DUI) for five common insurance companies. As shown below, the coverage cost is almost doubled with the DUI Cost Difference.
Cancelled Insurance Policies
Most car insurance companies will raise your rates after your DUI conviction. However, some companies may choose to cancel your policy altogether if they feel it is in their best interest.
The True Cost of DUIs
DUI convictions are incredibly expensive. The exact costs vary depending on the state and the circumstances, but can be upwards of $9,000! According to California Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs (ADP), you will have to pay additional charges on top of your premium increase such as towing/impounding fees, fines and penalties, license reissue fee, treatment program, court costs, and attorney costs.
Remember, a clean driving record is the way to cheap car insurance. If you’ve had a DUI in the past, driving safely and doing your best to remain accident-free can go a long way toward lowering your premium. A long period of safe driving can really help counterbalance the cost of a DUI to your premium.
Don’t hesitate to call us today at 415-386-2283 with any questions you may have regarding your auto insurance policy and coverage options.