Are you a high-risk insurance driver? What exactly are the parameters that’ll classify you as a high-risk insurance driver? There are lots of ways auto insurance companies complete their risk assessment. First of all, If you have too many driving convictions, at-fault accidents, or a combination of the two, you can be classified as a high-risk insurance driver.
While you are waiting to reduce the count on your profile which can take years to complete drop, you still can’t stop driving altogether to work or leisure with family and friends. I mean to say you need auto insurance to drive. A lot of factors come into play when evaluating your liability quotient; gender, age, driving history, and credit scores. Your liability quotient is evaluated to determine whether you are a high-risk driver or not.
In this article let’s look at what high-risk insurance is and best of all let us review and compare the top 4 auto insurance companies that offer high-risk auto insurance at affordable premiums. Let’s get started.
Are you a high-risk insurance driver?
Generally, drivers are considered as high risk by most insurance companies if they fall into any of these groups:
1. Inexperienced drivers
Have you been driving for less than ten years? If yes, most insurance companies will categorize you as a high-risk driver. Consequently, you will be charged a high premium.
Drivers who just got their licenses are charged more but as the year goes by, charges are reduced gradually.
2. Young drivers
Teenagers are generally classified as high-risk drivers having their car insurance among the very highest. This is due to the fact that young people are by far prone to more accidents.
Generally, Insurance companies classify their age grouping differently. However, if you’re below the age of 25, you shouldn’t expect to be off the young driver’s list.
3. Drivers with a bad record
As a driver, getting a single ticket might not make you high-risk, however, multiple tickets or serious violations such as reckless driving or drinking under influence will certainly make you one. These will compel you to acquire an SR-22; a form issued by the insurance company that ascertains you possess SR-22 insurance.
4. Drivers not currently insured
Having a license with no insurance puts you in a bad position with insurance companies. It will be assumed that you’ve been driving uninsured which is risky and therefore makes you a high-risk driver.
5. Drivers with bad credit
An analysis carried out by insurance.com found out that drivers with poor credit are charged 71% more than what drivers with good credit get charged for.
This might be because of the more frequent claims drivers with poor credit tend to file.
High Risk Auto Insurance
Simply put, the high-risk car insurance is the insurance category reserved especially for high-risk drivers.
Being a “high risk” driver will always mean high premiums to pay. Most insurance companies will always charge drivers who they consider as high risk for more, irrespective of whether they are applying for a new policy or are currently a policyholder.
However, there are still some insurance companies out there willing to take a bet on high-risk drivers. Not only are these insurance companies willing to give high-risk drivers another chance, but they also offer the very best rates.
Best High Risk Car Insurance Companies
The General (For Minimum Coverage)
Dairyland Insurance (For Drivers who need An SR-22)
State Farm: Finest Rates After a DUI
GEICO: Best Finest After a Traffic Violation
1. The General Insurance
The General insurance prides itself as a company that is always willing to provide auto insurance policies to anyone including high-risk drivers.
In the insurance industry, The General falls into the non-standard auto insurance category because of its specialization in protecting high-risk drivers.
For a non-standard car insurance company, The General is one of the best companies out there that offers the best coverage. They are present all over the United State except for Massachusetts, Michigan, and New Jersey.
Advantages and Disadvantages Of The General Insurance Company
The company offers coverage for even the highest-risk drivers
Numerous extraordinary discounts
Claims are easy to process through the mobile app
Poor liability coverage
Customers complaints are just a little above average
Provides insurance for cars only
The General only offers car insurance, it is quite impossible to work around different insurance policies and save cash. Nevertheless, The General does offer some great rebates such as:
Multi-car; offered to clients who insure more than a car
Double Deductible; which practically doubles the deductible for comprehensive and wreck coverage for the first one and half month of a policy which in turn reduces your premium
Paid In Full; offered to customers who pay a full year premium rather than the monthly installment.
Previous Insurance; offered to those who switch directly from another provider to the General insurance.
Customers are given the opportunity to monitor all activities online. Be it the quote process, filing claims, and even changes to policies. This can be done via the mobile app or over the phone
Also, The General’s website and mobile app are equipped with built-in chat features that give clients immediate access to customer service. This helps to improve the communication process and allows customers to lodge complaints easily.
Furthermore, the app’s Easy Claims feature, allows customers to make a claim and upload evidence all from the mobile. This considerably simplifies and improves the process; less waiting time, and reduction in stressful back and forth.
Additional Insurance Offerings
The General’s primary priority on low-cost and lowest coverage alternatives for high-risk drivers, it doesn’t offer any unique coverage choices for customers. However, through partner companies, Mexico Tourist are provided with Auto Insurance policies
It’s also vital to point out that even though The General fulfills all state minimum regulations for the total 47 states it serves, the company does not provide high dollar amount policies.
To note; bodily injury harm max out at only $100,000 per person or $300,000 per accident, and property damage harm caps out at only $100,000 per accident.
Customer reviews are not all positive; slow processing of claims and increase in rate after an additional violation is mostly complained about. The numbers of customer’s complaints are quite numerous.
2. Dairyland Insurance
Generally, drivers with major violations, DUIs, or with the history of uninsured driving in most states, require unique evidence of insurance. This document is referred to as SR-22.
However, not all insurance companies are ready to cover high-risk drivers some insurance companies don’t even offer SR-22 documentation.
Luckily for you, if your driving history mandates you to file for SR-22 documentation, you can easily qualify for a Dairyland car insurance policy.
A quick registration on their website gets you the required SR-22 documentation you need to get back on the highway.
Advantages and Disadvantages Of The Dairyland Insurance Company
Accessible 24/7 online or through phone
Autonomy to assign your personal body shop
High competitive ratios for high-risk drivers
Delayed payments which lead to loss of coverage
Customer grievances with the claims procedure
Absent local agents
Astonishingly, quite a whole number of discounts are offered by Dairyland Insurance. These discounts include:
Quarterly/Yearly Payment Plan
Similar to most insurance companies, Dairyland provides lots of services via its mobile app and website.
Ultimately, customers are able to access account information, make a payment, tender ID cards and procure quotes online through the app and website
However, it is required that all customers file all claims over the phone because it can’t be done via the online portal or mobile app. Furthermore, alterations can’t be made to coverage without putting a call through directly to Dairyland
Additional Insurance Offerings
When compared to other bigger insurance companies like GEICO, Dairyland has limited insurance offerings to provide.
Apart from the auto insurance coverage (motorcycles included), no additional offering is provided by Dairyland. Not even homeowners or life insurance.
When compared to other non-standard insurance companies, customer satisfaction in states where Dairyland is accessible seems incredible and consistent. As a matter of validity, Dairyland Insurance maintains an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau.
Also, customers have always given credit to Diaryland on the ease and effectiveness of getting a policy and SR-22 documentation which is crucial for high-risk drivers who want coverage promptly.
However, customers complaints about Dairyland Insurance on various review sites has always been about billing issues and claims processing being delayed
3. State Farm Insurance
It’s quite normal for most insurance companies to drastically increase rates after a driver is being charged with a DUI. Some insurance companies even go as far as nearly doubling the rates post-DUI.
This is so because DUI related accidents take a lot of lives. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration records approximately 30 deaths every day in DUI related accidents
The good news is State Farm is a more tolerant insurance company when it comes to DUI. It is a fact that State Farm has the lowest rates in more than 20 states for drivers who receive DUIs.
Advantages and Disadvantages Of State Farm Insurance
Lowest rates for drivers with DUI in more than 20 states
Provides Drive Safe & Save discount plan
Offers homeowners & other policies
The burden of working via the local agent
Limited smartphone app
Fair customer satisfaction
Poor claims processing
State Farm provides lots of discount options for safe drivers, safe vehicles, and customer loyalty. You can get a minimum discount of 5% and a maximum of 65% in savings.
The Drive Safe & Save plan is one of the tremendous discount options State Farm has to offer. It makes use of a smartphone app to monitor the driver’s driving habits.
A 5% sign up discount is guaranteed and the longer the driver drives safely (avoiding unexpected stops, driving within the speed limits and), the more savings he/she builds up.
Eventually, you can save up to 30% to cover your monthly premiums.
Just like other insurance companies, State Farm customers can always monitor their car insurance account online via the company’s website and mobile app.
This online avenue allows drivers to have easy access to account information at any time, request roadside assistance, and even make a claim should an auto accident occur.
The most vital part of the app is the ease of communication with the State Farm agent anytime and anywhere.
Additional Insurance Offerings
State Farm is one of the insurance companies that can provide all of your insurance needs.
They offer coverage for traditional car insurance and other types of vehicles such as motorcycles, off-road vehicles, and boats.
In addition, State Farm also provides a wide range of other types of insurance such as life insurance, supplemental medical policies, renters and homeowners policies, and even disability insurance policies.
With a great network of good local service agents, State Farm offers unique customer services when compared to many other high-risk insurance companies. In 2019, State Farm ranked seventh out of 25 insurance companies in the claims satisfaction study conducted by J.D. Power.
4. GEICO Insurance
Before you can be labelled as a high-risk driver, you must have committed numerous driving violations or gotten into a few accidents. Sometimes, that’s not the case. Many insurance companies tend to find fault in a few violations and auto accidents and ultimately increase their rates.
This always makes it difficult for these drivers to sustain their car insurance. However, with GEICO, competitive rates are offered to drivers with few violations or accidents on their record.
Advantages and Disadvantages Of GEICO Insurance
Impressive discount offerings
One of the best mobile app services
Outstanding customer reviews
An insufficient network of agents
Zero GAP coverage
Homeowners and other policies are underwritten by partner companies
GEICO’s greatest selling point has always been the wide range of discount options it provides for its client.
Amazingly, GEICO does not only offer discounts on car safety alone, but it also provides discounts based on driving habits and loyalty to the company.
Furthermore, GEICO is in partnership with quite a number of companies and organizations to offer unique discounts to customers and members of those organizations.
When it comes to digital experience, no insurance company does it better than GEICO. They offer a remarkable digital experience to customers. All your insurance needs can be managed and monitored at any time on the online mobile app and website.
Activities ranging from filing claims, checking claims, viewing, and printing of insurance ID cards, requesting for roadside assistance, and viewing of vehicle information can be done online.
Additional High Risk Insurance Offerings
In comparison to other insurance companies, GEICO offers the most when it comes to extensive car insurance. GEICO also provides coverage for a wide range of other vehicles such as motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles, RVs, and boats.
Apart from car insurance, they also offer health insurance, life insurance, homeowners and renters insurance, and lots more. However, a lot of these additional insurance offering is provided through partners.
Nevertheless, customers can always bank on these policies and get the best discounts possible.
GEICO has always been known for its extraordinary customer services. Presently, the company retains an A+ rating with the Business Bureau (BBB). Also, J.D. Power consistently rated GEICO has one of the best when it comes to customer satisfaction.
Furthermore, Customers have always endorsed GEICO for its low rates, extraordinary digital experience and readiness to insure high-risk drivers.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the cost of high risk car Insurance?
Rates are not constant all over the states as insurance regulations and other conditions vary from one state to another. However, an increase of up to 10-50% in cost can be sustained once you are considered a high-risk driver.
What is the effect of being a high risk driver on coverage?
Generally, low-risk drivers pay lesser than high-risk drivers for the same amount of coverage. It is even quite difficult for high-risk drivers to qualify for standard car insurance coverage. Only non-standard auto insurance comes to the aid of high-risk drivers.
For how long is one considered a high risk driver?
Poor driving history like traffic violations, accidents, and tickets don’t affect insurance rates for very long. Your insurance rates should reduce 3 years after the violation
However, an exception to this rule is the DUI conviction. This affects your insurance rates up to a period of 5 years.
Do all Insurance companies offer coverage to high risk drivers?
No. Only a handful of standard insurance companies will consider high-risk drivers. However, non-standard insurance companies are all ready to welcome you with an open arm.
How do you de-risk your driving coverage?
There’s typically nothing you can do about some factors like age, gender, and inexperience. However, what is entirely manageable is your driving risk class. Here are some recommendations you can follow in de-risking your driving coverage
Try as much as possible to increase your credit score
Register for a driver safety course
Look for a favourable insurance rate three years after your last traffic violation
Make sure your auto coverage does not expire
How can I get the best high risk auto insurance?
A lot of time and personal research must be put into finding the best non-standard insurance company.
Getting online quotes from various insurance providers and comparing their rates will give you an insight.
You can apply for quotes from different insurance providers online. Make sure you compare and contrast results before you make your decision.
It is quite the struggle for high-risk drivers to find good car insurance. However, if you search enough, there are a number of great companies out there who are willing to offer coverage for high-risk drivers even at a competitive rate.
If you are a high-risk driver, it’s not only vital that you find the best insurance company that offers a good rate but it’s also important you get all the required documents like the SR-22 from the insurance company to certify that you are insured.
Let me know your thoughts and comments below. Thanks for reading!
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Sagar Sridhar is a personal finance blogger from Canada. His genuine passion for personal finance coupled with his unique style of writing is what stands out. Professionally, he is a computer engineer, agile certified and has a master’s degree in Project Management. His writing has been featured or quoted in the leading Canadian publications such as Credit Canada and many other personal finance publications. While he is juggling between his day job and blogging, he is the main author on this blog and has miles to go before making the final pit stop.