Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (DUI) is a serious crime that can have legal, financial, and personal consequences. One of the most significant repercussions of a DUI is an increase in auto insurance premiums, which can affect drivers for several years.

Why does car insurance increase after a DUI?

Car insurance companies calculate premiums based on the risk each driver represents. A DUI indicates that the driver has committed a serious violation and is more likely to cause an accident or be sued for damages. Therefore, insurers consider drivers with DUIs to be high risk and charge them more for coverage.

How much does car insurance increase after a DUI?

The increase in car insurance after a DUI depends on several factors, such as the insurance company, driving history, the type and amount of coverage, and the state where you live. The national average car insurance increase after a DUI is 80%, which means the annual premium increases by about $1,300.

However, in California, the increase in car insurance after a DUI is much higher than the national average. According to the same study, California drivers pay 186% more for car insurance after a DUI, which is equivalent to about $3,000 more per year. This is because California has very strict auto insurance laws and requires DUI drivers to file an SR-22 form, which certifies that they have the minimum coverage required by the state.

How to reduce the impact of DUI on car insurance?

Although a DUI can have a negative impact on your auto insurance for several years, there are some ways to reduce or minimize it. Some of them are:

1. Compare different insurance companies and quotes. Each insurer has its own criteria and rates for evaluating DUI drivers, so it’s a good idea to shop around for the best deal possible.
2. Take advantage of available discounts. Some companies offer discounts for having a good academic record, completing a defensive driving course, installing anti-theft devices, or combining multiple policies.
3. Maintain a good driving record. Avoiding further violations or accidents can help improve reputation and trust with the insurer, which can result in a gradual reduction in premiums.
4. Choose a safe and economical vehicle. More expensive, luxury or sporty vehicles tend to have higher premiums, as they involve more risk and more repair costs. Opting for a more modest vehicle with good safety ratings can make insurance cheaper.

Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is an irresponsible decision that can endanger your own life and the lives of others. Plus, it can have a significant impact on your wallet by increasing the cost of auto insurance. Therefore, it is best to avoid driving if you have consumed alcohol or drugs or resort to other options such as public transportation, taxis, or shared services. This way, you can save money and avoid legal and personal problems.