How A DUI Affects Insurance Rates
Quite aside from the threat to life and property, and the emotional toll taken by drunk driving, there is also a huge financial impact. Too many people take the risk of trying to drive home after “a few drinks”, and end up finding themselves not quite as sober as they thought. Even if any tragedy is avoided, a driver in Lincoln County, MT could still end up paying about $10, 828 in total costs before all is said and done.
How DUIs Impact Car Insurance
There are a lot of deleterious effects of DUIs, and one of them is the increased risk assessed by car insurance companies. A driver with a DUI is a high-risk diver and can expect any insurance premiums to double – or their policy to simply not be renewed.
According to Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), the average first time offender in DUI cases can see car insurance rates range between $3,600 and $6,600 a year. These rates could remain for up to seven years, depending upon state law. Any additional claims filed or any additional traffic violation may raise the rates still further.
The Further Price of DUI
Only people in major cities with an excellent public transportation system can get along well without a car. It is almost a necessity for survival. It will cost more than just additional insurance premiums to recover from a DUI. While it varies from state to state, a DUI offended can generally expect to pay for:
Towing ($300 - $1,200)
Bail ($250 - $2,500)
Fines and Court Fees ($500 - $2,500)
Average Attorney Fees ($2,500)
Mandatory Education and Treatment ($350 - $2,000)
Electronic Home Monitoring ($150 - $2,250)
Ignition Lock ($730 - $2,800)
Aside from the above costs is the time it will take to fulfill and complete all these obligations. It takes time to get the car from towing, and to sit in court, and to take classes – not to mention any possible jail time. Some states even suspend driving privileges, even on the first offense, making it that much harder to get to court or classes.
A DUI is a criminal offense, which means an offender's driving record will have a black mark. Getting a job in certain occupations will be much more difficult, in much the same way finding affordable car insurance will be more difficult.
Is It Possible to Get Affordable Car Insurance After a DUI?
A DUI is a vast mistake, but it is possible to come back from such a disaster. Keeping clean after a conviction will slowly lower car insurance rates, especially if the offender was young at the time. It is even more important for a driver with a DUI to shop around for lower premiums. The options will be diminished, but that is no reason to sign up with the first provider that is willing to take on someone with a black mark on their record. Research and compare, just as usual, and most importantly avoid any other accidents or tickets.