UPDATED: APRIL 27, 2023 | 1 MIN READ
Having too many drinks with your friends costs you more than a morning hangover. You probably never thought you would get a DUI, a severe offense. Once you get charged with a DUI, legal and insurance consequences must be sorted out. You will likely see a spike in your car insurance rates increase after DUI.
The average auto insurance rate increase for drivers with a DUI is 74%. It’s a significant expense that negatively influences people’s lives. Not everyone can afford an extra $1,470 added to their car insurance.
How to Get Cheap DUI Insurance
It might be tough finding cheap car insurance after a DUI. High-risk drivers often find that they pay a lot more for car insurance. Getting cheap auto insurance is possible if you follow these steps:
- Compare car insurance companies immediately: Each company has different rates for a DUI. Call various insurers to receive car insurance quotes to ensure you get the best rate possible.
- Let the insurer know you have a DUI: To get an accurate quote, they need to see any traffic infractions and your DUI.
- Get multiple quotes: DUI insurance is expensive, so you want to call around to ensure you get the best deal.
- Switch carriers after three years: If your company isn’t offering the cheapest rate, it’s time to switch companies.
- Avoid future violations: It’s time to start trying to lower your insurance premium. That means avoiding accidents and speeding tickets which raise your premium.
Car insurance rate increases by the company
An insurance provider has different rates depending on their view of a DUI, as the rates vary depending on the auto insurance companies. Rate increases range from 28% for Progressive to 156% for GEICO.
It’s best to look at your overall premium, not just the surcharge or deductible. State Farm has an increase of 38% after DUI, but the cheapest rate is $1,942 for full coverage. That’s $400 cheaper than Progressive, which has the lowest percentage increase. Allstate has the most expensive DUI insurance premiums, increasing to $1,440.
Financial consequences of a DUI
The NHTSA reported that 36,750 people died from drunk driving accidents in 2018. There are severe financial penalties for getting behind the wheel impaired. You’ll likely feel the economic impact of a DUI for years.
A DUI costs thousands of extra dollars a year in fines, testing, fees, and insurance premiums. The Alaska DMV estimates that a DUI costs the convicted party $25,000 over five years. Some people never recover from it and are forced not to drive. The following comprehensive costs are associated with a DUI:
- Lost income for court or jail time
- Attorney costs
- Posting bond
- Court fees
- License reinstatement fee
- Driving school
- Ignition interlock installation
Can Your Insurance Company Drop You After a DUI?
An insurance company does have the option of dropping you if you have a DUI on your record. If you have multiple violations and a DUI, you are considered a high-risk customer to an insurer. They might assume that you’re going to cause future expensive claims.
In some states, an insurer can’t legally cancel your coverage after a DUI. Still, they do have the option of not renewing you.
How much does insurance go up after a DUI?
A DUI is a serious offense; once you receive one, you’re considered a high-risk driver. That means that it’s now more expensive to insure you. Moving forward, you’re expected to pay higher premiums. On the low end, expect your coverage premium to go up at least $800 a year. On the high end, it can jump as high as $3000 in additional costs yearly. How much you pay depends on your insurance company and your previous premium.
Extra costs after DUI
You have a rate hike to look forward to, but there are a few more expenses to keep in mind that come after DUI.
- Bail: If you’re a first-time offender, you likely won’t have to worry about bail. A repeat offender will probably pay anywhere between $500 to $100,000.
- Tow truck: If being handcuffed isn’t bad enough, you must also spring for a tow truck and pay impound fees which average about $330.
- SR-22: Almost all states ask insurance companies to submit an SR-22 form to ensure that DUI offenders carry proper SR-22 insurance. The insurance agent will expect you to foot the cost of the form.
How long will a DUI affect my car insurance rates?
When you apply for a policy, insurers review your driving record. If a car insurance company sees a DWI or DUI, it’s a red flag. A DUI is a significant infraction that increases your premiums and stays high for up to 3-5 years.
One factor that comes into play is whether your state insurance laws allow a DUI to raise your premium. In North Carolina, insurance companies can look back on your driving record for three years, but Massachusetts allows five years.
Even after a DUI is dropped from your record, it’ll affect your rates. In California, you’re not eligible to obtain a 20% good driver discount until ten years after the DUI.
How long does a DUI affect your insurance in California?
Your insurance premiums are affected at least ten years after your DUI. You can only receive a good driver discount ten years after the DUI drops off your record.
How long does a DUI affect your insurance in NJ?
A DUI in New Jersey affects your insurance for up to ten years. Depending on how far back the insurance company checks your driving record, it might be longer.
How much does your insurance go up after a DUI in Florida?
A DUI affects your insurance premium for three years after the conviction. Your rates increase after DUI, and you likely must get an FR-44 insurance certificate to prove you’re insured.
Do you have to tell your insurance company about drunk driving?
If you have a DUI conviction, you must tell the insurance company. If you don’t disclose it and the insurer finds out later, they can drop you. Getting a new insurer after another drops you is quite a bit more challenging because they know you withheld information.
How long does a DUI stay on your record?
It depends on your state, as the insurance laws differ from state to state. For example, suppose you have a DUI conviction in Florida. In that case, it stays on your driving record for 75 years and your criminal record for life.
Is your insurance valid if you’re drunk?
It’s essential to check the wording of your insurance policy. Not all insurers are the same. Some insurers deny coverage if they find out you were doing something illegal while driving. In other cases, the insurer does cover the damages.
How long do you lose your license for drunk driving?
If it’s a first offense without bodily injury, it’s a minimum of 180 days revocation and a maximum of one year. If it’s the first offense with bodily injury, it’s a minimum of three years. For second offenses within five years from prior convictions, it’s a minimum of five years revocation.