What will happen to my auto insurance rates if I am convicted of a DUI?
DUI convictions come with far-reaching consequences, many of which are commonly overlooked by those facing a DUI charge. A DUI conviction may result in mandatory jail time, hefty fines, suspension of your driver’s license, probation, ignition interlocks, and more. In addition to these well-known penalties, an often overlooked collateral consequence of a DUI conviction is drastically increased auto insurance premiums or potentially even dropped coverage. Our Phoenix, Arizona DUI lawyers discuss the impact of a DUI on your auto insurance rates below.
Calculating Auto Insurance Rates
Auto insurance companies will set your insurance rates based on the company’s calculated risk in insuring you. The insurance company will consider many factors that influence your risk as a driver, including your age, the state and city in which you live, your type of car, accident history, and how far you drive, as well as your credit score, gender, and marital status.
DUIs and Your Premium
A DUI is considered a risky behavior that can greatly impact your auto insurance rates. One DUI has been found to correlate to an increased rate of accidents. Further, the insurance company believes that those with one DUI conviction are more likely to be a subsequent DUI. For these reasons, a DUI will raise your rates substantially.
Typically, the auto insurance company will discover your DUI when your policy goes to renew. During the renewal period, the insurance company will check your driving record to look for accidents and other risks. Driving records go back several years, so your DUI will be taken into account when calculating your premium for years after the conviction.
The exact increase in your insurance will depend on what state you live in and your insurance company, but nationally drivers convicted of a DUI should expect their premium to jump upwards of 80 percent in the first year following the conviction. Afterward, the increase will gradually reduce for a few years. Your car insurance may not be the only insurance affected. You may also pay more for health insurance or life insurance if you are convicted of a DUI. You can potentially avoid all of these collateral consequences of a DUI by hiring an experienced DUI defense attorney to help you beat the charges you face today.