Finding Cheap Car Insurance with a Bad Driving Record

You can find cheap car insurance rates even with a bad record. Your state can assign you to a high risk pool and this will guarantee you receive coverage.

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Zaneta Wood, Ed.S. has over 15 years of experience in research and technical writing bringing a keen understanding of data analysis and information synthesis to reach a wide variety of audiences. She studied adult education and instructional technology at Appalachian State University as well as technical and professional communication at East Carolina University. Zaneta has prepared technical p...

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Joel Ohman is the CEO of a private equity backed digital media company. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, author, angel investor, and serial entrepreneur who loves creating new things, whether books or businesses. He has also previously served as the founder and resident CFP® of a national insurance agency, Real Time Health Quotes. He has an MBA from the University of South Florida. Jo...

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Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder & CFP®

UPDATED: May 13, 2020

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Here's what you need to know...

  • If you have a bad driving record, you may have a hard time finding cheap insurance
  • When shopping for car insurance with a bad driving record, you may have to pay higher premiums now
  • However, if you make a commitment to change your record, you can start saving money in the future

The best way to find cheap insurance is to:

  1. Compare insurance premiums
  2. Clean up your driving record
  3. Improve your credit
  4. Purchase just  enough insurance to meet state requirements

Compare car insurance rates now by entering your ZIP code into the tool box on this page!

What makes a bad driving record?

Before you can learn how to find the best insurance, you should know what kind of driving record you have.

Driving records update and clear every three years in most states, so it is always a good idea to pull your driving record from the Department of Motor Vehicles before shopping for insurance. This way you won’t be shocked when the insurance company comes back with a quote.

See, insurance companies quote you a rate based on your risk factor. If you have a bad driving record, then there is a good chance you pose a higher risk to an insurance company.

Risks correlate directly with claims. Claims are usually made because of moving violations and accidents.

There are three risk categories in the insurance industry:

  • Low risk
  • Moderate risk
  • High risk

Individuals in the high-risk category are going to pay the highest rates and have the hardest time finding a company willing to insure them.

Often, the insurance company is mandated by the state to designate a bad driver as high risk. This is usually in the case of a convicted DUI or DWI.

Under these circumstances, the insurance company has to provide a form known as a SR-22 to the Secretary of State proving the individual has obtained insurance.

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How do I find the best insurance rates with a bad driving record?

The best way to find cheap insurance rates with good coverage for individuals with a bad driving record is to compare insurance cost and coverage. You cannot simply choose the cheapest insurance.

You must review your quote to determine the kind of coverage you are getting for the cost.

You should obtain at least three quotes from three different insurance companies to be able to make a thorough decision.

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How do I clean up my driving record?

The best way to clean up your driving record is to first make sure it is accurate.

  1. Pull your record from the Department of Motor Vehicles and make sure it is correct. If it is not, you should consult an attorney.
  2. Make a commitment to obey all driving laws. Do not speed, drive distracted or tired, or drive while or after drinking. Always wear your seat belt.
  3. Take a driver’s education course or defensive driving course to learn how to become a better driver. These courses are inexpensive, and you can often receive a discount on your insurance policy if you complete a course.

How can I clean up my credit?

You may wonder what your credit has to do with your insurance rating. Insurance companies pull a credit check to see if you pay your bills. If you pay your bills, you usually have good credit.

The insurance company will consider you a lower risk because they believe you will pay your car insurance premiums on time due to your credit rating.

If you do not pay your bills, the insurance company is going to see a low credit score and believe that you will not pay your insurance premiums on time. This presents a risk to the insurance carrier.

Pull your credit report to see how to clean up your credit.

Maybe some of the things on the report are not true. Maybe you need to straighten these items up with the businesses that put them on there. Maybe there are some items that can be removed if you make good on them.

Finally, pay your bills on time to raise your credit score.

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How can I get insurance while still saving money?

If you have a bad driving record, you can get insurance that you can afford by purchasing only the state-required coverage.

Each state has a different insurance requirement. Purchase only what is required by law.

Once you do the things mentioned in the article above, you can slowly increase your insurance coverage as your premiums drop.

You can also start shopping around to find even better rates with better coverage.

Enter your ZIP code into the FREE box on this page and start comparing online car insurance quotes now!



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Enter your ZIP code below to view companies that have cheap car insurance rates.

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