Those who have marred driving records, such as having a moving violation or DUI/DWI conviction, makes them high-risk representatives to auto insurance companies. The problem is that many of these individuals still need to drive in order to maintain their livelihood; commute to jobs and otherwise take care of themselves and their families. New programs present more options for high risk drivers to help them deal with the higher costs of their liabilities on the road. Here are some common tips for securing some of these high risk insurance options.
Many states in America now have their own assigned risk pools, where the state government forces auto insurance companies to provide insurance premiums for high risk drivers. In an assigned risk pool, a state agency may assign a high risk driver to a specific auto insurance company. The high risk driver may not get to shop around, but usually will end up being covered. Some of these kinds of auto insurance policies are called SR22 policies because drivers have to provide a certificate called a SR22 to the state government to show that they have obtained the insurance they need to stay legally on the road.
The response of auto insurance companies to the emerging high risk driver market is a product called non-standard auto insurance. In the industry, non-standard auto insurance is generally a kind of insurance policy that works to cover high risk drivers. In some states, this kind of insurance is part of a “high risk tier” with its own premium averages for those who can’t take advantage of a clean driving record.
This kind of strategy is not a common method for high risk drivers who want to secure auto insurance. The reason is that, although a few states have begun to consider cooperative auto insurance policies for group coverage, only Vermont has a significant cooperative auto insurance program, according to many industry resources. Some high risk drivers can get onto family auto insurance plans if they are young enough and live with their parents. However, although group coverage is very desirable for many drivers, it is not available in most states.
For some drivers whose higher risk is less significant, it may be possible to bring down their premium costs with a standard auto insurance policy that provides less coverage. One of the main ways to do this would be a limited use policy, where the driver would make their insurance payments according to monthly or annual mileage. The average insurance company offers something similar to this with “mileage and use tiers,” where representatives will ask those signing onto policies how often they drive their vehicles. New “pay as you drive” systems make this even more concrete with mileage tracking systems and per-mile premium calculations. Another way to bring down the cost of any auto insurance policy is with deductibles. A deductible shifts more of the accident cost onto the policy holder, but it’s something worth looking into if a high risk driver is just a little bit more of a risk, pushing insurance costs just above what he or she can afford.
Though a motorcycle driver may be a very safe driver, the mere fact that motorcycle driving is inherently dangerous will make any coverage more expensive than car insurance. Off road insurance, also being more dangerous than driving a car, will also be more expensive.
There are a number of car insurance companies that also specialize in providing “special” insurance coverage for motorcycle and off road driving. Sometimes these companies will include this coverage and give a discount if you carry your regular car insurance, and even house insurance with them.
When inquiring about high-risk vehicle insurance coverage be sure to check your states’ specific minimum requirements for coverage. This coverage can vary from state to state. Underinsuring yourself can be costly since you will be liable for any costs not covered by your insurance company.
Determine the minimum requirements for the particular vehicle you wish to insure. If looking to increase these amounts, do this before starting your comparable price quote research. Enter these numbers in the online questionnaire or state these to the customer representative if you decide to make inquiries by phone. Keeping these numbers consistent during this research will allow you to compare “apples to apples”. Inquire about any options such as uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage. Remember if the person who causes an accident is either uninsured or underinsured, you will be covering those costs or you may have to incur legal costs in order to sue them for the difference.