Get charged with a DUI, and you typically lose your license for one to six months. Your auto insurance coverage and rates will also be affected. Learn what you can do to find coverage and earn affordable insurance rates after a DUI.
Understand Insurance After a DUI
Every state has strict laws that prohibit driving under the influence. However, each insurance company uses slightly different criteria to evaluate your risk as a driver. Companies consider your traffic and driving violations differently, too. For example, some companies punish at-fault accidents more severely than DUIs.
Typically, your risk and rates are based on several factors, including:
- Marital status
- Credit rating
- Employment status
- Driving history
- Other violations (speeding, recklessness, drug possession) that occurred at the time you received the DUI
After a DUI, your insurance company will look at these factors and decide how to handle your policy. They may continue insuring you at a rate increase or drop your coverage.
How to Qualify for Insurance After a DUI
If your current insurance coverage is significantly raised or dropped, you may still be able to get coverage. Contact national and local insurance agents, and ask for free quotes. To ensure you receive the most accurate quotes, tell the truth about details like your age, marital status, address and traffic violations, including your DUI. Also, use the same coverage limits for each quote.
Investigate SR-22 Proof of Insurance
Many DUI offenders use the SR-22 form to verify that they have insurance coverage. It’s designed for drivers with serious violations like DUIs, violent crashes and excessive speed. You still need to maintain the minimum insurance requirements for your state, but this form shows that you have auto insurance coverage.
The SR-22 is filed with your state’s department of motor vehicles or department of licensing by you or your insurance agent. In many cases, this form is necessary for up to three years after a situation where your driver’s license is suspended.
Lower Your Rates After a DUI
Of course, maintaining a pristine driving record after a DUI and keeping your credit score high will help your rates go down. Additionally, you can ask for a new quote every year. Be sure to notify your insurance company, too, after you move, when you buy a different vehicle or when you switch jobs. These actions might help you earn more affordable insurance rates.
While obtaining auto insurance after a DUI is challenging, it isn’t impossible. Try these tips and talk to your agent about other options that might assist you in finding the coverage you need.