Will a DUI Conviction Raise My Car Insurance Rates?

Have you just gotten a DUI conviction? Even worse, is it your repeated DUI offense in Orangeburg, SC? A DUI conviction in SC means:

  • Payment of fines and penalties
  • Suspension of driving license
  • Attending alcohol correction program
  • Imprisonment time

These are some of the common aftereffects of DUI conviction in SC. However, do you know you may raise your car insurance rates due to a DUI conviction?

Yes, according to the best DUI defense lawyers near me, a DUI conviction will certainly raise your car insurance rates in Orangeburg, SC. The question is, by how much?

Factors impacting the car insurance rates after a DUI conviction

The rise in your car insurance rates after a DUI conviction will depend on several factors like:

  • Age of the driver

As per insurance companies, the younger drivers are riskier to insure as they are more likely to be involved in a DUI conviction at some point in their life. Not only once, but it is also common for youngsters to drink and drive, drive rashly, and be distracted. For this reason, the car insurance premium after a DUI conviction is higher for 18 years old compared to a 30-year-old driver with the same driving history.

Insurance rates for 18-year-olds are likely to be increased three times than for a 30-year-old following a DUI conviction.

  • Number of DUI offenses

Another factor that decides the rate by which your insurance premium will rise is the number of your past offenses. If it is a repeat offense, are you convicted of DUI for the second, third, or fourth time? The insurance companies follow a past 3-year rule.

The number of offenses in the past three years would affect your insurance rates. If a 30-year-old has more than three DUI in the past three years, they can expect the insurance premiums to increase by a whopping 285% compared to someone else with only one DUI in the last three years.

  • Time before your last DUI offense

It also matters how frequently you are convicted of DUI offenses. Insurance companies generally consider the last 3 to 5 years to judge your driving record. Some insurance companies have a minimum number of months set for clean driving. If a person has a clean driving record within that period, say 30 months, then only a normal insurance policy will be granted.

  • Insurance company

Lastly, the insurance rate premium also varies from company to company. Each insurance company also follows different criteria to fix its rates. You can compare the quotes of two or more companies and see the difference.

They will have minimal to exponential difference; however, you still cannot get insurance rate at a normal rate after a DUI conviction in SC.

What DUI laws in Orangeburg, SC?

Orangeburg has the same DUI as followed all over South Carolina. As per this,

  • If your BAC is found to be lower than 0.08: You cannot be convicted of a DUI offense, but the police have to prove the impairment levels.
  • If your BAC is above 0.08: You will be considered driving under influence and be convicted of DUI.

Your penalties for DUI conviction will depend on your BAC level and the offense number.

The fines, penalties, jail time, driving license suspension period, IID installment, and community service increase depending on your first, second, third, or subsequent offenses.

How do insurance companies know about DUI convictions?

The common question many people ask is how can insurance companies know they are charged with a DUI conviction? Well, this is because your DUI conviction goes on your driving record.

When you go to your insurance company to renew your insurance, they access your driving record and know all your recent DUI convictions.

Also, after your DUI conviction, your driving license gets suspended. To reinstate your driving license, you would have to ask your insurance company to file for SR-22 on your behalf. Thus, there is no way you can get away with not informing your insurance company about your DUI conviction.

SR-22 is the sinecure form your insurance company has to file on your behalf after major traffic violations.

How long does a DUI conviction stay on a driving record in SC?

A DUI conviction stays on your driving record for up to 10 years. It is removed after ten years.

Most insurance companies check up to 3 to 5 years of your past driving record. Chances are that the DUI conviction may not affect your insurance rate directly but may finish your chances to claim discounts and offers provided to people with good driving records.

In Orangeburg, SC, the average annual rate of getting insurance without a DUI is $1414. However, with DUI, it increases to around $2000. This means you can expect your insurance rates to go up by at least 40% after a DUI conviction.

If it’s a repeated offense, the number can go much higher up.

How can a DUI attorney help you?

In such circumstances, a DUI attorney can help you get a DUI conviction on your driving record.

If you are proven not guilty of a DUI offense in SC, it won’t show up on your driving record, you won’t get your driving license suspended, and thus, your insurance premiums would not go high.

A DUI attorney can help if you are wrongly convicted of a DUI offense. For the better, a DUI attorney can also help in reducing your punishments. An attorney works to challenge the tests that prove the presence of alcohol in your body.

They can come up with valid reasons to challenge the field sobriety tests, the chemical test, and the breathalyzer test as they need be.

They can also help reduce fines, penalties, and jail time. A DUI attorney can help convicts replace their jail time with additional time spent on a voluntary correction program.

Thus, there are many ways in which a DUI attorney can help you in a DUI conviction in SC. It can save you from spending highly inflated insurance premiums.

If you are not convicted of a DUI offense, your insurance premium can gradually decrease and return to normal. If you feel you are being wronged at any point time during a DUI conviction or dealing with the insurance company, you can contact an experienced criminal defense lawyer in Orangeburg, SC. 

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