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Insurance after a DUI

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Being charged with driving under the influence is a serious offense and the consequences can be both expensive and embarrassing. You will be subjected to fines, attorney fees and even license suspension, but further than that, there are long-term consequences that you will have to face as well, primarily your car insurance rates and coverage. DUI convictions are dealt with in one of two ways with your insurance company – they will either raise your insurance rates or simply cancel your insurance policy all together. Chances are that when you are convicted of a DUI, your insurance company will find out about it. If your insurance company decides to raise your premiums and keeps you insured, chances are they will label you as a ‘high risk driver’. Many of the states require that your insurance company provide the Department of Motor Vehicles for that state with an SR-22 proof of insurance certificate, which removes the suspension on your license showing that you are insured with your vehicle. However, not all insurance companies offer SR-22 policies. If your insurance company does not offer SR-22 insurance policies, you may have your insurance cancelled simply because they can no longer insure you. The laws in some states furthermore state that insurers can not cut off your insurance policy in the middle of a term – be sure to check the laws where you live to find out if this applies to you. There is a small chance that your insurance company will not find out about your DUI, perhaps because it slipped through the cracks of all the red tape. On some occasions, your insurance company won’t raise your rates because you’ve been insured with them for a long time and you have a pristine driving record otherwise, while this sounds very nice and dandy, it’s very unlikely to happen. If your insurance policy is cancelled or not renewed, you should still be able to find insurance, however it will likely be with a different insurance company and none of the preferred carriers. Some of the other well known insurance companies and smaller companies will be able to file an SR-22 for you and your license may then be reinstated. Do not doubt that your insurance rates will indeed rise. A DUI stays on your driving record for a minimum of five years and perhaps as long as the rest of your life, depending on the state that you live in. Some states and insurance companies may also require you to have a breathalyzer box in your vehicle after a DUI. The breathalyzer box is connected to your vehicle and you must breathe into it in order to start your vehicle. There’s a catch to this system as well – the box will beep occasionally and at random intervals while you are driving. When it beeps you have a set period of time to blow into the box or your vehicle becomes disabled. If you are looking for insurance coverage after you have been charged with driving under the influence, it’s best to go through an independent insurance agent who works with many insurance companies to find you the best insurance coverage you can get, at the best price.

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