Car Insurance and Drunk Driving

Car Insurance and Drunk Driving: You are arrested while driving drunk. What should you tell your insurer? What are the consequences of drunk driving on your car insurance premium?

Here are the answers to the most frequently asked questions. Also remember that driving while impaired by a drug (e.g.: cannabis), alcohol or even fatigue remains very dangerous.

Should I report the suspension or revocation of my driver’s license to my auto insurer?

Yes, you must promptly inform your car insurer:

  • when your driver’s license is suspended (usually for 90 days) due to an arrest for drunk driving;
  • when you are convicted of impaired driving and your license is revoked;
  • when you’re shopping for new car insurance and you’ve already been convicted of drunk driving.

In the event of a claim, your past could resurface. Your insurer could refuse to compensate you if you have made a false declaration, or if you have “forgotten” to mention a change.

Will my car insurance premium increase because I lost my license?

An arrest followed by a conviction for impaired driving certainly increases your risk factor in the eyes of your insurer. And greater risk means a higher premium.

You are not found guilty following your arrest? There should be no impact on your premium. On the other hand, as soon as you are found guilty, there is one. This increase can be very significant: your premium could go up to triple. 

See examples of the financial consequences of drinking and driving for two drivers, particularly regarding car insurance premiums.

Can I be insured even if I have a criminal record due to drunk driving?

If you are convicted of driving while impaired by alcohol, you will have a criminal record. When you are allowed to drive again, you will be able to be insured, but it may be more difficult for you to find an insurer.

Once again, it all depends on the risk you represent for insurers. Your insurance premium will increase significantly for a first conviction, but if you didn’t cause an accident, you shouldn’t have too much difficulty finding an insurer. 

On the other hand, if you have several convictions in a few years, or if you caused an accident, you could be refused by certain insurers. You will then have to turn to a specialized insurer.

As you can see, the impact of auto insurance on drunk driving is great. Be careful: there are many myths about eliminating alcohol. When you drink, consider finding a safe way home.

Read also: Car Insurance: To Better Understand and Save

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