You already know that a DUI could land you in jail, and costs thousands of dollars in legal fees, but did you know that car insurance for DUI offenders can spike anywhere from 30-200 percent? That's why you should always have a designated driver or plan on catching a ride after a few drinks.
If you've already been involved in a DUI and you're wondering what to expect from your car insurance in Illinois, then you're in the right place. Let’s discuss how a DUI impacts your car insurance rates and policy.
Expect to Pay Higher Insurance Rates
You should still be able to carry insurance on your vehicle after a DUI, but it will cost you significantly more. Depending on various factors, your current policy could be canceled, so you may need to shop around with different insurance companies to find one that will insure you and your vehicle.
When you do find one that will offer coverage, you can expect to pay higher rates than what you're used to.
Here are some factors that influence how the car insurance companies decide your rates.
Factors that Influence Your Car Insurance in Illinois After a DUI Conviction
If you are facing your first offense, you may not face as many problems as someone that has had a prior DUI or other traffic convictions in the past.
Most first-time offenders shouldn't have any problem acquiring insurance coverage, although you will still pay significantly higher rates than someone without a DUI on their record.
Your insurance company will base your rates on several different aspects of your driving record. Keep in mind that where you live also determines your rates.
Your Age at the Time of your DUI
Younger drivers will pay more for the same insurance policy, on the same vehicle, than a more experienced driver. Even if this is your first DUI conviction, if you are under the age of 21, you could risk losing your insurance altogether.
Likewise, an older driver with more than one DUI conviction in the past 12 months to three years could experience rates comparable to a younger driver with only one conviction.
How Many Moving Violations
Another factor that influences your rates depends on how long it's been since your DUI was placed on your record. Insurance companies generally base your rate on the past three to five years’ worth of driving history. This could also mean that if you have other traffic violations on your record, your rates will go up even further after a DUI.
How Many DUIs Have You Had?
Your rates will soar higher and higher the more DUI’s you end up with. It's important that you learn your lesson the first time and don't get caught up in a string of DUIs or you could risk losing your insurance all together.
Otherwise, you can expect to pay the maximum premium with two or more DUI’s on your record.
Your rates will also be affected by the insurance company with which you're trying to get insurance. Different companies handle driving under the influence differently so it’s' a good idea to get as many quotes as possible when you're shopping around.
Even if your insurance company isn't planning to cancel your policy after your DUI, you should shop with other insurers to ensure that you're getting the best possible rate.
How Do Insurance Companies Find Out About a DUI?
Now that you have a DUI, you're considered a high-risk driver by your insurance company.
They will find out when they check your driving record
When you receive a DUI, you could lose your license for a period of time. When it's time to have your IL drivers license reinstated, you'll need to file a specific form called an SR-22 with your insurance company. At very least, they will find out about your DUI when you present them with this form.
The SR-22 is required by the department of motor vehicles to ensure that you have insurance coverage before you can have your suspended or revoked license reinstated, so it's important to be honest with your insurance company before presenting this form.
How Much Can a DUI Raise Your Insurance Rates?
It's difficult to say exactly how much your rates will increase with a DUI conviction. It depends on where you live, what you drive, how old you are, and other traffic violations that you may have. On average, you can expect to pay no less than 30 percent more than you would pay with a clean driving record.
How Long Does a DUI Stay on Your Insurance?
A DUI remains on your driving record forever in the state of Illinois and thus will also remain on your insurance. Again, it depends on where you live as to whether a DUI will remain on your insurance for a specified period of time. On average, most people can expect to pay higher rates for at least 7 years.
A Serious Matter
A DUI is a serious offense for which you will pay the consequences in one way or another. While it is possible that an experienced lawyer can help you with reinstatement, car insurance in Illinois for first-time offenders could rise by up to 44 percent and will remain on your record for years to come.
The best thing you can do if you've been convicted of a DUI is to recognize your mistake, pledge to do better moving forward in life, and be grateful that you didn't hurt yourself or somebody else.
Having your IL driver’s license suspended or revoked and dealing with the process of getting it reinstated, just to find out that your insurance rates have spiked will be a daily reminder to help your will to improve.
If you need help reinstating your IL driver’s license, or if you have questions related to your DUI charges, feel free to contact us. We may be able to help.