Elijah Black is a Greenville, South Carolina native with a B.A. English from Coastal Carolina University. He is a fiction writer and also works as a freelance writer and editor. He’s worked as a Production Assistant for WYFF 4 and has been published in several publications and websites across the United States.

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Rachael Brennan has been working in the insurance industry since 2006 when she began working as a licensed insurance representative for 21st Century Insurance, during which time she earned her Property and Casualty license in all 50 states. After several years she expanded her insurance expertise, earning her license in Health and AD&D insurance as well. She has worked for small health in...

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Reviewed by Rachael Brennan
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Apr 23, 2021

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Don't Forget These Facts

  • High-risk drivers can lower their insurance rates by taking a defensive driving course.
  • Maintaining a clean driving record for at least three years can lower rates since most insurance companies only look back 3-5 years.
  • Each insurance company will assess risk differently so shopping around for quotes is the best way to get cheap high-risk insurance.

Buying car insurance for high-risk drivers doesn’t mean you’re doomed to pay expensive insurance rates forever. If you can avoid getting another violation on your driving record for at least three years, you can lower your car insurance rates. 

High-risk drivers have multiple options when it comes to lowering rates and finding affordable high-risk insurance.

Taking a defensive driving course, trading in your vehicle for a safer model, improving your credit score, and comparison shopping online for cheap SR-22 insurance quotes can all lower premium costs.

If you’re thinking to yourself “I’m a high-risk driver. What are my options?”, start right here. Enter your ZIP code into our free insurance calculator above and get free quotes from local companies to find the best rates.

What is a high-risk driver?

The term high-risk driver doesn’t just apply to those with DUIs or reckless driving tickets, although charges like that will definitely put you in a higher risk category. In reality, insurance companies consider high-risk drivers to be anyone more likely to make an expensive claim.

The different types of high-risk drivers usually fall into one of the following categories:

  • Drivers with multiple speeding tickets and traffic violations
  • Drivers with accidents on their claim history
  • Drivers with multiple insurance claims
  • Drivers with DUI/DWI charges
  • Drivers with a suspended license
  • Drivers with poor credit scores

Each insurance company will assess risk differently, and many use drunk driving statistics when determining car insurance rates for high-risk drivers.

Some providers consider younger drivers to be high-risk and charge more for teen car insurance. Others will categorize high-risk drivers based on the kind of car they drive, meaning a Lamborghini can increase your risk level and raise your auto insurance rates.

How long are you considered a high-risk driver?

Depending on your driving record and your insurance provider, you can be considered a high-risk driver for six months or up to 10 years. On average, most insurance companies look back 3-5 years when assessing risk.

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I’m a High-Risk Driver: What are my options?

Since every provider uses different criteria to determine risk, and since insurance rates vary widely based on your age and where you live, shopping around for high-risk car insurance quotes from multiple companies is the only way to ensure you’re getting the best rates.

Time is the best option for high-risk drivers. The more time that passes between speeding tickets, traffic violations, and insurance claims, the less of a risk you pose to the insurance company.

You can make it easier on yourself by signing up for a defensive driving course to improve your driving record. Or work on your credit score by consolidating your debt and making more than the minimum payment, but there’s little you can do about your claims history except wait.

How to Find High-Risk Car Insurance Companies

If you’re a high-risk driver and want to know what your options are, start comparing high-risk auto insurance quotes online. Get multiple high-risk insurance quotes from local companies right here to find the right provider.