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Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol isn’t just dangerous to you and those around you — even if you manage to avoid a fatal accident, the implications could last well beyond the event. Getting arrested and charged with a DUI could cost you thousands in legal fees, higher insurance premiums and even cause your driver’s license to be revoked, among other penalties. Learn why it pays to drive safely and avoid getting behind the wheel while impaired.
How much does car insurance go up after a DUI?
If you’re charged with a DUI, you can expect your car insurance rates to be affected for years to come, depending on your state’s regulations. Insurers consider drivers with serious convictions on their driving record to be high-risk drivers, and potentially more likely to be involved in future accidents. For this reason, car insurance for drivers with a DUI is significantly more expensive compared to those with clean driving records, although the actual costs may vary based on a variety of factors, including which carrier you choose. Here are some average rates we obtained from Quadrant Information Services for well-known car insurance companies, both before and after a DUI conviction.
|Company||Annual average cost of full coverage premium||Annual average cost of full coverage premium, after a DUI||Difference|
Other financial implications of a DUI
The financial consequences of a DUI aren’t just limited to a fine and insurance surcharges. There are numerous other fees associated after receiving a DUI citation, which could add up to thousands of dollars over several years. While actual costs might vary based on state and situation, the American Addiction Centers estimates that a DUI could cost between $10,000 to $25,000 or more.
Some potential expenses after a DUI could include:
- Posting bond
- Car towing or impound fee
- Attorney costs
- Court and jail fees, including sentencing and probation
- Random drug screenings
- Driving school
- Ignition interlock installation
- License reinstatement fee
- Lost income for court and/or jail time
How to lower auto insurance rates after a DUI
After a DUI, the average cost of full coverage car insurance jumps nearly $1,650 per year. If you’re finding car insurance rates after a DUI to be far out of your budget, here’s some things you can consider:
Research your state’s requirements
Not all states treat DUIs the same, so research your state’s requirements regarding DUI and DWI charges. You may need to look into non-standard auto insurance, and which car insurance carriers will submit an SR-22 or FR-44 on your behalf to the DMV.
Each insurer measures risk differently. Shopping around and comparing car insurance companies could help you find cheaper auto insurance rates, even after a DUI. Many other factors, like your location, type of vehicle, annual mileage and more could influence your final rate.
Check discount opportunities
If you’ve received a DUI citation, you likely won’t be able to earn a good driver discount for many years. However, that’s not the only car insurance discount available. If you own your home, you could add a multiple policy discount by bundling your home and auto insurance with the same carrier. You could also get a discount by being a member of certain affiliate or professional groups, driving infrequently, and more.
Safeguard your driving record
Be more cautious than ever after a DUI conviction. Minor accidents or driving infractions like speeding tickets can trigger your insurance company to hike your rates again — or even drop you.
The differences between DUI, DWI, OVI and OUI
For the sake of simplicity, we refer to convictions from driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol as a DUI. But there are several related terms that are often categorized together:
- DUI: Driving under the influence
- DWI: Driving while impaired or intoxicated
- OUI: Operating under the influence
- OVI: Operating vehicle intoxicated
- OMVI: Operating a motor vehicle impaired
Many of these distinctions vary based on the state you’re in. DUI and DWI are terms often used interchangeably, but a state may use just one of these to refer to a driver with a blood alcohol level above the legal limit. If that’s the case, then a DWI typically has the stronger penalty compared to a DUI. In many states, these offenses also apply to driving while under the influence of drugs.
Some states use alternative acronyms like OUI, OVI and OMVI to include broader types of vehicles. For example, states like Ohio got rid of “OMVI” in favor of OVI so that people riding bikes or other non-motorized vehicles could also be held accountable while doing so under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Frequently asked questions
Shopping for car insurance is always important, but it’s even more critical when you have a recent DUI on your record. When shopping for the best car insurance, be sure to request quotes from more than one carrier so that you can see which one offers you the best coverage at an affordable price. Although this may be difficult, also try to be upfront about your record and allow the insurance company to run your driving record, as this will give you the most accurate estimate and avoid any surprises when you’re ready to move forward with binding the policy.
After a DUI, average rates for full coverage car insurance increase from $1,771 to $3,421 per year. Rates vary by state and could be different for every driver. For example, drivers in Maine, New Hampshire and Idaho pay an average rate of just under $2,000 per year for full coverage car insurance after a DUI, while drivers in Michigan, New York and Louisiana pay over $5,000 per year, on average.
Getting cited for a DUI can become a massive financial burden. The average cost of a DUI will vary by state and the type of offense, so it’s difficult to provide an accurate or comprehensive estimate. Start by educating yourself about your state’s regulations and then you can work with a knowledgeable professional to learn more.
Bail fees can vary depending on location and are also often subject to judicial discretion. The American Addiction Centers estimates that bail could cost anywhere from $100 to $2,500.
Bankrate utilizes Quadrant Information Services to analyze 2022 rates for all ZIP codes and carriers in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. Rates are weighted based on the population density in each geographic region. Quoted rates are based on a 40-year-old male and female driver with a clean driving record, good credit and the following full coverage limits:
- $100,000 bodily injury liability per person
- $300,000 bodily injury liability per accident
- $50,000 property damage liability per accident
- $100,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per person
- $300,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per accident
- $500 collision deductible
- $500 comprehensive deductible
Our base profile drivers own a 2020 Toyota Camry, commute five days a week and drive 12,000 miles annually.
These are sample rates and should only be used for comparative purposes.
Incidents: Rates were calculated by evaluating our base profile with the following incidents applied: clean record (base) and single DUI conviction.