The penalties for driving while under the influence (DUI) may not come as a surprise to many as they expect serious consequences such as fines, probation, license suspension, or even jail time. However, they may not expect a DUI conviction to affect their auto insurance rates. When a person is convicted of a DUI their premium insurance rates are negatively affected as their coverage increases significantly. If you or someone you care about has been charged with a DUI, contact a trusted Chesterfield County DUI Lawyer who can help you get your charges reduced or dropped. Please continue reading to learn more about how insurance companies charge individuals with DUI convictions higher rates.
Could a DUI affect my auto insurance rates in South Carolina?
After a DUI conviction, individuals should expect their auto insurance rates to rise. When insurance companies calculate insurance quotes, they consider a motorist’s future risk of being involved in an auto accident to help them determine an appropriate rate. Motorists who have DUI convictions are considered to be “high-risk” drivers. Essentially, this means they have a significantly higher chance of being involved in an auto accident. This causes motorists’ auto insurance rates to go up. According to statistics, insurance premiums after a DUI can raise by 69% or increase by up to two times what a person currently pays. This can affect a motorist’s ability to make payments. Furthermore, when estimating an insurance rate, insurance companies will review a driver’s record. DUI convictions stay on a driver’s record permanently. Typically, insurance companies look back 3-5 years to evaluate a person’s driving history to determine the likelihood of them being involved in an auto accident. Auto insurance rates could be affected by a DUI conviction for up to 10 years.
Could my insurance company cancel my policy?
Insurance companies are private institutions which means they can refuse to renew or cancel their policyholder’s policy based on whether the driver has a DUI conviction on their record. As mentioned above, insured drivers with DUI convictions are considered “high-risk” which means they are more likely to be involved in an auto accident. This may give insurance companies enough reason to refuse to renew or cancel a policyholder’s policy. However, for the most part, insurance companies will simply charge their policyholders higher rates rather than terminate their coverage.
In the unfortunate event that you or someone you love has been charged with a DUI, it is critical to obtain the legal services of an experienced Chesterfield County DUI lawyer who can help represent your interests in court. A DUI conviction has serious penalties and repercussions such as causing your insurance rates to skyrocket. DUI convictions can affect your auto insurance rates for several years. Allow our firm to fight on your behalf to help you get your charges reduced or dropped.