Driving while under the influence of alcohol and drugs can pose a danger to your safety as well as others. Even if you don’t cause an accident, being arrested and charged for DUI could result in thousands of dollars in legal fees, higher insurance premiums, and even job loss.
One in three people will be involved in a drunk driving accident during their lifetime. The Federal Bureau of Investigation estimates that for every drunk driving arrest made, there are 500-2,000 unpunished drunk drivers.
Drunk driving is a common problem in our society. Being caught behind the wheel while intoxicated can lead to serious consequences in terms both of risk and insurance rates.
What is the cost of insurance after a DUI conviction?
DUI is a serious offense. DUI convictions are considered high-risk drivers by insurance companies and therefore more costly to insure. DUI insurance will have higher costs. Your annual full coverage premium will increase by $800 per year on the low end. On the other end of the spectrum, you could see your annual full coverage premiums jump to as high as $3,000 per annum. Your provider and your previous insurance premium will affect the penalty. Here are some guidelines for insurance rates for DUI victims from a variety of insurance companies.
A DUI can follow you for up to seven years, and will count against your car insurance rates for at most three years. A DUI conviction can remain on your driving record for up to five years, depending on where it was committed. A DUI conviction in Pennsylvania or California will remain on your driving record for ten years. A Texas DUI conviction will stay on your driving record for the rest of your life.
A DUI can have financial consequences
According to the NHTSA, 36,750 people were killed in drunk driving incidents in 2018. Driving under the influence can lead to serious financial consequences.
A DUI can cost you a lot of money over the long-term. NOLO, an online legal library that is user-friendly, calculated the cost of a first DUI.
Over several years, a DUI can cost thousands of dollars in fees, testing and insurance premiums. According to Esurance the Alaska DMV estimates that DUI will cost the driver nearly $25,000 in five years. The following are the comprehensive costs of a DUI.
- Bond posting
- Attorney fees
- Court fees
- Driving school
- Ignition interlock installation
- License reinstatement fee
- Loss of income to pay court or jail time
Is it possible for an insurance company to drop you for a DUI conviction?
A DUI conviction can lead to insurance companies denying coverage.
Insurers may not approve of you if you have multiple convictions and a DUI. If they believe you could cause costly insurance claims in the future, they may drop your coverage.
An insurer cannot legally cancel your coverage in certain states after a DUI. However, they can choose to not renew you. The Automobile Insurance Plan Service Office offers an online directory that provides information about each state’s requirements. This directory will allow you to find a provider who will provide coverage regardless of your criminal record.
How to lower your auto insurance rates after getting a DUI
After a DUI, insurance rates can rise by at least $800 annually. These are some ways to lower DWI insurance rates.
Find out what your state requires
Different states have different DUI laws. Make sure you check the requirements of your state regarding DUI and DWI. Many states offer high-risk drivers assistance and support through nonstandard insurance programs offered by companies such as Geico or Progressive.
Take a look around
Every insurer evaluates risk differently. Comparing car insurance companies can help you get lower auto insurance rates even after a DUI. Progressive Insurance says that rates are only increased by about 13% per year after a DUI.
Protect your driving privileges
After a DUI conviction, be more careful than ever. Your insurance company may raise your rates or drop you if you are convicted of minor driving offenses, such as speeding tickets.
What are the differences between DUI, DWI and OVI?
We will refer to DUI convictions for driving while impaired by drugs or alcohol, just for simplicity. There are many related terms that you need to be aware of.
- DUI: Driving under the Influence
- DWI: Driving while impaired/intoxicated
- OUI: Operating under the Influence
- OVI: Operating vehicle impaired
- OMVI: Driving a motor vehicle with impairment
These distinctions can vary depending on where you are. While DUI and DWI are often interchangeable terms, a state might use one to describe a driver whose blood alcohol content is higher than the legal limit. A DWI usually has a stronger penalty than a DUI. These offenses can also be applied to driving under the influence of drugs in many states.
DUI is a serious offense that can have long-lasting consequences. It’s hard enough to feel shameful and embarrassed by a DUI conviction, but the financial consequences are even worse. Higher insurance premiums will follow, as higher legal fees and court costs can cost thousands of dollars.
However, all is not lost. There are ways to get affordable and comprehensive insurance coverage, even despite the severe consequences. Everybody deserves another chance. These insurance companies can help you save money and put your life in order.
Questions frequently asked
Which is the best auto insurance company?
It’s important to shop for car insurance if you have a DUI. There are many options for what insurance companies charge. Compare quotes from the best car insurance companies .
What happens next after you get your first DUI?
You may have to pay fines or have your license suspended if you get your first DUI. Additionally, you may have to attend a class in driving or substance abuse education. You might also be required to have an ignition interlock device fitted on your car. This serves as a breathalyzer test for you before you can drive.
Is it possible to get jail time for your first DUI conviction?
Alabama and Kentucky do not have minimum jail sentences for first DUIs. However, other states do. Minimum jail sentences, when necessary, can be up to 2 years.