How Does a DUI Affect Car Insurance Rates? | San Diego Law Blog
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How Does a DUI Affect Car Insurance Rates?

By San Diego Attorney on May 15, 2022

DUIs and insurance rates

DUI (driving under the influence) charges can have a major impact on your life. Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs can result in a DUI conviction, which carries with it serious penalties, both criminal and financial.

In addition to these immediate consequences, DUIs also have long-term consequences that can affect your ability to get car insurance coverage at an affordable rate.

Car insurance companies factor in past criminal convictions when determining how much you will pay for coverage, especially if you were convicted of driving under the influence. Your premiums may increase significantly if you have been convicted of a DUI.

Increases in insurance rates

Car insurance rates can increase by up to 165 percent when a driver has been convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Additionally, repeat DUI offenders may experience a double or triple increase in their auto insurance rates.

In California, the length of time that a DUI affects your car insurance depends on the type of insurance you have. If you are under 21, you may only be able to get a low-risk policy for three years after your conviction date.

If you are over 21, it will take five years for your rates to return to normal after you’ve paid off all fines and penalties associated with the DUI conviction.

The different car insurance companies and their rates

If you’ve had a DUI in California, there are several different car insurance companies that will offer you coverage. However, each company has a different rating system and may have different rates for the same driver. It is also important to consider your entire premium package, not just the cost.

For example, While Nationwide has the largest percentage increase after a DUI, it is still cheaper than Allstate.

Additionally, State Farm has the overall cheapest rate of $1,942 but increases by 38% after a DUI. It costs $1,440 less than Allstate, which has the highest DUI insurance rate, and is over $400 less than Progressive, which experienced the lowest percentage rise.

It is fundamental to contact an experienced Attorney at jD Criminal Defense Attorneys to discuss your options moving forward.

What is an SR-22?

The court or the state may order you to purchase SR-22 insurance if you are found guilty of a DUI. An SR-22 is a document that insurance companies issue to confirm a driver has specific auto insurance coverages in place, it is not an insurance policy in itself.

States might demand this following a serious traffic infraction such as a DUI, because they consider you to be a high-risk driver and need evidence that you are carrying the bare minimum in auto insurance cover.

The insurance provider will inform the state if you cancel the policy for any reason, and you could face consequences such as having your license suspended.

What are the ways you can combat the impact of a DUI?

When you’re convicted of a DUI, your insurance rates can skyrocket. It’s important to remember that the impact of a DUI on your insurance rates is not set in stone, there are ways you can combat it. Here are some tips for how to manage your auto insurance rate after a DUI:

Keep your driving record clean! After getting pulled over and charged with a DUI, you should make sure that you don’t get another ticket or citation while awaiting trial or sentencing. If you do get another ticket, the judge might raise your restitution or other fees associated with your case, making things even more expensive for you.

Don’t drive without insurance! If you’re caught driving without insurance after being convicted of a DUI, not only will you have to pay fines but also additional penalties that could include losing your license, and having higher premiums for years to come.

Get proof of enrollment in an alcohol abuse program or treatment program as soon as possible after being convicted of a DUI so that it can be included on your driving record; this will help lower the cost of your auto insurance premiums in the future because most insurance companies offer discounts for drivers who complete alcohol abuse programs or treatment programs within one year.

How can a lawyer help you when you’ve been accused?

At jD Criminal Defense Attorneys we can help you determine which insurance company is best for your situation, ensuring that you get the best possible coverage at an affordable price. We can also explain any potential legal options for contesting a DUI charge or appealing a conviction. Reach out to us at (760) 630-2000.

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