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October 17, 2018

Will Car Insurance Cover A DUI Accident?

Man Being Arrested For DUI

Driving while intoxicated is a crime. Most of us already know that. Yet, thousands of people make the mistake of committing this offense every year. When they do, many cause accidents. And in most cases, those accidents are the fault of the driver. If you face a charge of DUI resulting in an accident, will your insurance coverage pay for the damage?

Following DUIs, you might find your insurance coverage beneficial. However, you’ll likely face considerable challenges, even with coverage.

How Insurance Assists DUI Recipients

Committing DUI is a dire mistake. However, it’s often not something for which your auto insurer might deny a claim.

When you’re under the influence, you do not have the ability to make fully informed decisions. Therefore, wrecks or other harm you cause often fall into the category of accidents. You might have made other choices to prevent the accident. However, the choices you did make were still unintentional. Though you didn’t intend to harm anyone, you did anyway. That’s different from taking intentional actions to damage someone’s car, for example.

As a result, your insurance policy will likely pay for the losses you and others sustain. First, your liability insurance will pay for the damage of others. Those affected by your actions can claim their damage on your policy because you were at fault for their losses. Your policy will generally pay for damage you might receive to your own vehicle, as well. Medical payments or personal injury protection might also pay if you get hurt.

Keep in mind, any payment your policy offers will stay within the policy’s limits. Thus, if you face significant damage claims, there’s a chance your policy might not cover all the costs. That means you could still face financial challenges even after your policy pays.

Other Penalties Will Exist

DUIs are serious infractions. Therefore, you’ll likely face penalties not covered by your insurance. Not only that, your insurance itself might face a few challenges.

Most insurance companies will view DUIs as a signal that you are a high-risk driver. The fact that you caused an accident will only increase that risk. As a result, you’ll more than likely see your premiums rise, often considerably. You might even face coverage cancellations, SR-22 penalties and other undesirable outcomes.

Not only that, if you face legal penalties or jail time, you won’t get any assistance from your insurer. Your insurance coverage will not pay for most court costs or fines levied. Some exceptions might exist for certain legal fees or settlements.

The best way to avoid DUI penalties? Don’t drink and drive. It’s that simple. You can do so by planning and seeking other transportation if you plan to drink. With care and attention, you can take more responsibility for your own safety — as well as that of others around you.

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