Will Insurance Coverage Apply in a DUI Collision?
Policyholders usually have some idea of what will happen to their car insurance coverage after they are caught driving under the influence. Your premiums will either skyrocket or your policy will be canceled when it comes up for renewal. However, drivers tend to be less clear on how their policy applies if they have an accident while under the influence. Will your auto insurer pay out towards the collision costs if you were driving under the influence? Read on to learn the answer to this question.
How Will My Situation be Taken Care of?
Very few policies contain an exclusion for driving under the influence. In other words, most car insurers will cover a collision even if the policyholder was under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time. The full benefits of your plan should apply. Your liability coverage will be especially important, as other drivers will likely sue you if you cause any injuries or property damage. Once you are convicted of a DUI, however, your plan may eventually be canceled. At the very least, your premiums will rise substantially.
Consequences of a DUI Conviction
After you are convicted of a DUI, most states will require you to file an SR-22 with the department of motor vehicles. An SR-22 is a certificate provided by your insurer proving that you are insured. Not all car insurers provide SR-22 policies, so this is one of the reasons an insurer may cancel your plan following a DUI conviction. In certain states, auto insurers cannot cancel your plan before the term of your agreement expires as long as you are current on your premiums. Check with your state's department of insurance for information on the laws pertaining to your situation.
Finding a Plan after a DUI-Related Collision
If you have an accident while driving under the influence, you have two factors working against you in finding a well-appointed policy in the future. For one, you will have an accident on your record, which will keep your premiums high for three years in most cases. Additionally, you will have a DUI conviction on your record, which can drive your premiums up for as long as five years. If you need a new plan after you receive a DUI, compare rates on SR-22 policies with different carriers. These policies will be expensive, but it is your only option once you have a DUI on your driving record.