High risk auto insurance has been the subject of debate for quite some time. Consumers that are considered a higher risk feel that rates are too high while auto insurers feel that these consumers make up the largest amount of expenditures and thus should foot the largest amount of the bill. While both sides have an argument, you really only care about finding quality coverage at an affordable price. This is possible in many cases as long as you understand the basics of high risk auto insurance.
High Risk Auto Insurance: What is a High Risk Driver
Knowing how you are viewed by car insurers can help you find a better bargain. Most car insurance companies consider anyone with the following to be of the highest risk.
- 3 convictions or guilty pleas for moving violations in the past year
- DUI or DWI conviction
- Hit and run conviction
- Reckless driving conviction
- Vehicle negligence resulting in an injury
These are the big ones that will get you on all insurance companies list of risky drivers. You may also be considered a higher than normal risk by some providers if you fit the following criteria.
- Have filed numerous claims
- Show recent gaps in car insurance coverage
- Are a first time driver
- Have a poor credit history
High Risk Auto Insurance: Levels of Risk
As you can tell from the above information, there are levels of risk. If you are simply a first time driver, you will not be considered in the same category as someone who has recently had a DUI. If you are on the lower rung of the ladder as far as risk, you can most likely still find rather affordable coverage simply by shopping around and taking advantage of discounts. For instance, as a young, first time driver, you may be able to get a discount on your policy by having good grades.
If you are the top of the ladder as far as risk, things will be tougher. A recent DUI may force you to get what is known as a SR-22.A SR-22 is a form that some states require you to file if you have had a DUI or other major traffic offense. Though they vary by state, the form typically provides proof that you have a specific amount of insurance. Some auto insurance companies prefer not to deal with customers who are required to file a SR-22.
High Risk Auto Insurance: Choosing the Right Company
Choosing the right car insurance company is even more important if you are a high risk driver. There are some companies that penalize risky drivers more than others and some companies will not even offer you insurance if your driving record is too checkered. However, there are companies that specialize in high risk auto insurance and you can probably get better coverage, service and rates from these types of insurers. Here are a few companies that are generally more accepting of drivers posing a higher risk.
- American Family
- The General
High Risk Auto Insurance: Rate Quotes Still Work
As a high risk driver, you may benefit more from rate quotes than any other type of consumer. There is more variance from company to company for high risk auto insurance than any other type. You may need to get more than 5 rate quotes, but certainly no less than 5 to truly get a gauge of how much you will have to pay for coverage. Take the 15 minutes or so to get your quotes; it could truly save you a considerable amount on money on high risk auto insurance.