The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported over 28,000 fatalities in car accidents in the United States during the first nine months 2020. Montana is only responsible for a small percentage of the auto accident deaths (213 in 2020), but high-risk driving habits still pose major problems for the state. If a driver is caught driving in violation of traffic laws, their insurance provider will evaluate their risk and penalize them with higher premiums. It can be difficult to find affordable Montana car insurance for high-risk drivers. However, there are steps drivers can take in order to lower their premium after a traffic violation.
Bankrate defines a high-risk driver to be someone who has a clean driving record, and one speeding ticket, one DUI conviction or one at-fault incident. This definition is used to calculate rates for all information in this article.
Montana rates for high-risk auto insurance
In order to set their rates, insurance providers need to assess each policyholder’s risk. They typically look at your driving record for the last five years. Your insurance provider may increase your rates depending on the traffic offense. High-risk drivers should shop around after being cited for a traffic violation. Not all insurance companies will increase your rates the same way.
Rates for speeding tickets
Montana drivers who speed in Montana will be given three points. A driver who accumulates 15 points in a period of 36 months will have his license suspended for six month. Your license will be revoked for three-years if you accumulate 30 points or more within 36 months. These high-risk drivers may also be subject to a rate hike from their provider. Below is a table that shows what Montana’s most popular car insurers charge policyholders for speeding tickets.
Rates for an accident
Montana law requires you to report any accident you are involved in. Four points will be added to your driving record if you fail to report an accident or run from the scene. An accident is a serious offense that insurance companies don’t take lightly. They will be responsible for any damages you cause. It is not surprising that rates for at-fault injuries are more expensive than those for speeding.
Rates for DUI
In Montana, driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs was the number one cause of auto accidents in 2020. One DUI conviction will result in 10 points to your record. You will also spend up to six months in prison and be fined between $600- $1,000 for your first DUI offense. Your license may also be suspended for six months. You may also need an ignition interlock device in your car.
Drivers convicted of DUI in Montana must also have an SR-22 certificate which verifies that they have the minimum state-required auto insurance coverage. In Montana, drivers convicted of DUI must also have SR-22 insurance. This will lead to license revocation and jail time. For a DUI conviction insurance companies can impose severe penalties. High-risk drivers in Montana will likely pay 25% to 120% more for coverage.
Rates for teenage drivers
The Centers for Disease Control states that teens aged 16-19 are more likely to be involved in a car crash than any other age group. Teens are more likely to be distracted drivers, speeding, following too closely, and other high-risk driving behavior due to their inexperience. Insurance companies charge teens more for coverage. These rates will drop as long as the driver has a clean record. Montana parents who add a 16-year old driver to their auto insurance policy will be charged the following rates:
Who are high-risk drivers?
Bankrate defines high-risk driver for the purposes of this article as someone who has a clean driving record and is convicted of at least one of these offenses:
- DUI Conviction
- Speeding Tickets
- At-fault Accident
- Coverage Lapse
However, this definition is not the one used by insurance companies. A high-risk driver, according to the traditional definition, is someone who has a higher likelihood of filing an insurance claim than the average driver. If you are:
- You were caught driving without a valid license
- Be reckless
- Overall, have a poor driving record
- Are you a new driver?
- You can own a high-risk vehicle such as an exotic car, sports car, supercar, collectible car, or supercar.
- Are you 70 years old or older
Reach out to your agent to find out if your driver record is high-risk and what options are available to you to improve your relationship with your provider.
How to lower your rate for high-risk drivers
Although high-risk drivers in Montana pay more for coverage than average drivers, there are still ways they can reduce their rates following a traffic violation. These are:
- Compare rates: Different insurance companies may charge different rates for the same violation. It is worth looking around to find the best rate for you.
- Driver’s education: Many insurance companies offer policyholders the chance to take a driver’s education or defensive driving course in order to receive a special discount on premiums.
- Discounts available: You can ask your agent about other discounts, such as multi-policy, good student and paperless billing discounts.
- You will need patience and time: Insurance companies typically only look at the last five years of your driving record. This means that you should be able, once you’ve completed this period, to get lower rates (as long you adhere to safer driving practices and have not been cited).
Questions frequently asked
Which is the best company to insure high-risk drivers with car insurance?
The best car insurance company is determined by the particular infraction and how much your premium has been raised due to that violation. It is worthwhile to shop around for the best rates. Not all insurance companies charge the same rates depending on the infraction.
Which Montana insurance company offers the best car insurance?
USAA is the most affordable car insurance provider in Montana, according to Bankrate. This is not always true if you’re a high-risk driver. If you are convicted of DUI, you’ll pay $1,844 per year for insurance with USAA, as opposed to the $1,399 that you would pay for the same driving record at State Farm. High-risk drivers should shop around after a DUI conviction.
What amount of Montana car insurance does a Montana driver need?
- $25,000 per person for bodily injury
- $50k bodily injury per accident
- $20,000 property damage per accident