Car insurance companies divide drivers into two distinct groups: “low-risk” and “high-risk” drivers. Since low-risk motorists drive safely and obey all the rules of the road, they get great coverage for lower premiums. High-risk drivers, on the other hand, have to pay higher insurance premiums because they have a higher probability of making claims. In addition, despite paying more, they may also not get the type of coverage they desire.
High risk drivers may have a poor driving record, have poor credit history or be inexperienced drivers. They may also have been responsible for accidents or serious traffic violations.
Since driving without insurance is illegal, you just have to pay more to get insured. Without insurance, of course, you will not be able to pay for the huge costs of an accident and if caught driving without insurance, you could lose your license.
In addition to paying more for insurance, you may also have to find a company that offers SR-22 if a court has found you guilty of a serious driving violation. This is not something that all insurance companies offer.
According to acceptance insurance, a car insurance company that offers this service, “This type of insurance is generally required for drivers who have been caught driving without insurance, especially those who were involved in at-fault accidents while driving without insurance. It is also typically required for those who have been convicted of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, had their license revoked or suspended or had too many tickets or traffic offenses in what is deemed a short time period.”
How to Shop for Car Insurance
Fortunately, if you know how to shop for car insurance, you can get affordable insurance even if you’re a high risk driver, and here are 3 tips to lower your insurance costs:
1. Dig a little deeper.
When you shop for auto insurance as a high risk driver, you may quickly come to the conclusion that most auto insurance companies only insure people with almost unblemished driving records. Still, if you dig a little deeper, do a bit more research, you will find “non-standard” auto insurance companies. These are reputable auto insurance companies who are willing to give people with a troubled driving record a second chance. It’s not always easy to find these insurers, so you have to be persistent when shopping for auto insurance.
2. Compare insurance companies.
Although you might consider yourself lucky for finding a car insurance company that is willing to help you get back on the road again, you should continue to compare the company you find with other insurers.
In other words, you should shop for several possible providers instead of just settling for the first one you find.
Although one insurance company may appear to be cheaper than other, you also have to look at the coverage they offer. The cost may be lower because the insurer only offers minimal coverage. What looks like a good deal at first glance may not be worth buying when you look a little deeper.
How will you know you’ve found the best insurer?
You will know you’ve found an excellent insurance company if they offer superb service, give you lots of coverage options, and provide everything at a reasonable price.
In addition, this insurance company may be sympathetic to your situation and offer you a flexible payment plan. There are many ways a payment plan can be made more flexible—for instance, you could pay your premiums according to your payday schedule or within the limits of your monthly budget.
3. Getting SR-22 Insurance.
If you’re a high risk driver who also needs SR-22 insurance, you also have to make sure that the insurer you like that offers you an affordable plan with great coverage and a flexible payment schedule can also provide an SR-22.
Although SR-22 is often referred to as insurance, it has nothing to do with insurance. This is just a colloquial misnomer.
An insurance policy is something that covers risk after you pay a premium. An SR-22 is a form that the insurance company has to file with the state to verify that you have met with the minimum financial responsibility to drive on the road. The DMV defines it in the following way: “An SR-22 is a certificate of financial responsibility that ensures that you are meeting your state’s car insurance requirements, and that you will continue to meet these requirements for a specified amount of time (generally 3 years).”
Your Situation is Temporary
Although being classified as a high risk driver causes you a lot of inconvenience, it’s not irrevocable. Although you have made a few bad choices, the label won’t last forever. Every state has a specific length of time when a driving penalty has to stay on your record.
After that period, penalty points in your record are dropped. In addition, insurance companies offer incentives for drivers to clean up their records like attending courses in defensive driving or traffic courses. If you are proactive about it, you will eventually be able to drop the high risk label.