Virginia takes drinking and driving seriously, and the penalties drivers face after receiving a conviction for driving while intoxicated or driving under the influence are considerable. In addition to possible time in jail or prison, you may face any number of other penalties, some of which are financial in nature.
While fees, fines, bail and similar expenses may arise after an arrest for drinking and driving, Insure.com notes that your DWI- or DUI-related expenses do not end there. Once you become able to drive again, you are going to have to pay much more for auto insurance than you did before your conviction.
Anticipating your rate increase
Every driver’s situation is different. However, most Virginia drivers who receive first-time convictions for drinking and driving watch their annual insurance premiums go up by about 63%. This means that if you paid what the typical Virginia driver paid for insurance coverage before your DUI or DWI, you likely paid about $993 a year. After a first-time drunk driving conviction, the average Virginia driver pays about $1,619, which is an annual increase of $626.
Finding the lowest rate available to you
Some auto insurance providers may offer lower rates than others, and some may be more forgiving when you have a DWI or DUI in your driving history than others. Thus, it often pays to shop around. In some cases, you may have no choice but to get quotes from other insurance providers if your current one decides not to insure you after your conviction.
Keep in mind, too, that every insurance provider relies on a different formula to determine how much of a risk each driver poses.