DUI Conviction Affects Car Insurance Rates – Yes, No?
After being convicted for a DUI, many have concerns how a DUI conviction affects car insurance rates. The best way to avoid a DUI as well as the ramifications that stem from it is of course to avoid drinking and driving. However, for our readers who have had their license suspended or have been convicted for a DUI, our Petaluma DUI attorneys can answer all your concerns about what happens with your insurance.
Do I Have to Tell My Insurance Company About the DUI?
Fortunately, California does not require you to let your insurance company know about a DUI conviction. This means that your insurance company might not find out about the conviction until your insurance policy needs to be renewed; however, the DUI will likely cause your rates to go up at that point.
The situation gets tricky, however, when we take into consideration that a DUI generally results in a license being suspended. In order to get your license back, the state of California will likely require you to get what is called SR-22 insurance, which is also known as ‘California Proof of Insurance Certificate.” This insurance provides the following minimum coverage: $15,000 for the death of injury of one person; $30,000 for the injury or death of more than one person; and $5,000 for any property damage. SR-22 insurance is essentially a form filled out by your insurance company that shows you meet the minimum insurance requirements described above. It is a way for California to ensure that by reinstating your license, there is some minimum liability insurance should you be involved in another accident.
Unfortunately, notifying your insurance company that you need SR-22 insurance lets them know about your DUI conviction. While insurance companies are not permitted to stop covering you in the middle of your policy, your “Good Driver Discount” may no longer apply if you get a DUI. This means for most people a DUI conviction will result in increased fees for insurance. In addition, some insurance companies don’t provide SR-22 insurance because it is considered high-risk, and the result is a loss of your insurance policy entirely.
However, our Santa Rosa DUI attorneys know that since California requires all drivers to have insurance, there are certain insurance companies out there who will provide you with SR-22 insurance. This is good news for many people who think getting insurance is impossible after a DUI conviction.
Get the Best Legal Advice for a DUI
To ensure that your insurance premiums do not go up drastically, it is important that you work with a skilled attorney if you have been arrested for a DUI. Our North Bay DUI attorneys have won many of our cases and can work with you to get your insurance reinstated and make sure you are covered for SR-22 insurance should you need it. Getting arrested for a DUI is a traumatic experience. Make sure it’s as stress-free as possible by calling one of our Santa Rosa DUI attorneys today.
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(Photo courtesy of chris meller)