If you've been arrested for a DUI, it's time to start thinking about your car insurance. Things are going to change once your insurance company finds out, especially if you're convicted of the charges. A couple of different things can happen to your car insurance after a DUI conviction. First, your insurance company may cancel your policy. Second, if your insurance company doesn't cancel your policy, you can expect the rates to increase. That doesn't mean you'll be without car insurance. It does mean that you'll need to be prepared for the outcome. Here are four steps you can take to protect your insurance after a DUI.
Understand State Requirements
If you've been arrested for a DUI and you expect a conviction, now's the time to learn about the requirements in your state. Each state has different requirements for DUI convictions. For instance, some states require that you file a SR22 form following a DUI conviction. The SR22 form ensures that you maintain car insurance at all times. Also, some states require higher insurance premiums after a DUI conviction. Before you're convicted of the DUI, make sure you understand the requirements you'll be facing.
Start Looking for a New Policy
If it looks like you're going to be convicted of a DUI, start looking for a new insurance policy. Chances are good that your current insurance policy will be canceled or that it will be too expensive for you to continue with. The best way to avoid lapses in your insurance policy is to have another one lined up before your current policy is cancelled. When shopping for a new policy, be sure to let companies know that you're facing a DUI conviction. That way, you know you're getting an accurate quote.
Don't Settle on One Quote
If you're preparing for your DUI conviction, don't settle on the first quote you get. Insurance companies charge different rates for individuals with a DUI conviction. You may find a lower rate by requesting quotes from more than one insurance company. While you're shopping for quotes, don't stick with the big-name insurance companies. It's possible to find lower rates at smaller insurance companies.
Finally, if you are going to be required to file an SR22 form but you're not going to be driving your own car, consider filing a non-owner form. This is especially beneficial if you are going to be driving someone else's car or only driving for essential purposes, such as school or work. A non-owner form may reduce the cost of your insurance following a DUI conviction.