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Denver Criminal Defense Attorney Explains How DUIs Impact Your Car Insurance

May 16, 2018

A DUI conviction does more than leave a mark on your permanent record. It can impact your relationship with friends, cost you your job, and even increase your expenses day to day. While an experienced Denver criminal lawyer will help you navigate the legal proceedings and mount a fair defense, you’ll still need to be prepared to face the realities of how a conviction can impact your daily life. One of the most noticeable ways a DUI can change your monthly expenses is through your car insurance.

Increased Perceived Risk

When insurance companies offer you a rate quote for a policy, they base their decision largely on your driving history. Those with few to no negative marks on their record are considered to be low-risk drivers. This means they’re less likely to get into an accident and thus less likely to need to file a claim with the insurance provider. The fewer claims an individual files, the more money they save the insurance company, making them more attractive clients and safer investments. If an individual with an extensive history of speeding tickets, traffic infractions, or even a single DUI looks for a policy, they’ll likely receive a higher monthly premium rate.

Though higher rates can be expected when searching for new policies after a DUI conviction, you may end up having to pay more each month to your current insurance provider. For many drivers, a single conviction can cause their rates to increase several hundred dollars.

Insurance Records Can Change

Unlike court record and criminal records where a DUI conviction is not likely to get expunged, insurance companies are a bit more forgiving. Most drivers see increased rates for no more than seven years after a conviction. However, during that time, you may be required to submit additional documentation to your insurer as proof of safe driving and financial responsibility. This may mean you’ll need to purchase additional liability insurance to satisfy state requirements or to address the increased financial risk the insurance provider assumes by issuing your coverage.

After those years, your insurance premiums should go down. If your existing insurer is not willing to lower your premiums back to a standard rate, you’ll want to shop for a new policy. Keep in mind that shopping for new coverage before the DUI conviction expires on your insurance record, you’ll likely be ineligible for discounts and should be prepared to pay a significantly higher monthly premium.

How to Lower Your Rates Quickly

Look for an insurance company that specializes in coverage for high-risk and post-DUI conviction drivers. When shopping for a policy, be honest with the insurance agent and let them know the details of your conviction if they ask for them. The more they understand your unique situation, the better prepared they’ll be to provide you with a fair quote.

DUI convictions can have far-reaching effects on your life and your finances. However, with the right representation, you’ll be able to mount a proper defense and argue your case. If you need help getting through a DUI conviction, contact The Law Office of John L. Buckley today.