Cheap Car Insurance Quotes for High-Risk Drivers (2024)

Multiple violations, limited driving experience, luxury vehicles, coverage lapses, and poor credit can all get you labeled a high insurance risk.
Written by R.E. Fulton
Edited by Kathleen Flear
When you
request a car insurance quote
, the insurer will create an estimate of the risk you pose. You might be deemed a high risk driver if you: 
  • Have multiple driving violations or at-fault accidents on your driving record 
  • Have a DWI or DUI conviction
  • Have an SR-22 certificate on file with the DMV
  • Have very little or no driving experience
  • Had a major car insurance lapse
  • Have a very low credit score
  • Own a rare or luxury vehicle
  • Driving violations, lack of experience, or an insurance lapse can make you a high risk to an insurance company. 
  • In some cases, insurance companies will deny coverage to high-risk drivers. 
  • If you can get coverage as a high-risk driver, your rates will likely be much higher than low-risk drivers. 

High-risk drivers should compare quotes from major insurers and non-standard providers

All car insurance companies base premiums on risk—but they don’t all handle risk in the same way. 
For example, let’s look at how some of
the best-known insurance providers
deal with high-risk drivers: 
  • Progressive
    has the lowest average rate increase after a DUI (37%), but the highest increase after a speeding ticket (42.5%). 
  • GEICO
    has some of the cheapest average rates overall, but policyholders with DUIs see an average rate increase of 120%. 
  • Allstate
    has the smallest average rate increase after a speeding ticket (15%), but high rates for drivers with poor credit. 
  • Nationwide
    has the smallest average increase for families adding a teen driver to their policy, but high rates after a speeding ticket or DUI. 
  • USAA
    offers high-risk auto insurance to military members and their families, but average rates will be higher. 
But high rates aren’t the only problem: Depending on your driver profile, an insurance company can decide that you’re too great a risk and deny you coverage

Non-standard insurance companies for high-risk drivers

That’s where
non-standard insurance companies
come in. These companies specialize in insurance for high-risk drivers, and they may sell you a policy if you’ve been turned down by another company. 
We compared rates from some of the best non-standard auto insurance companies for high-risk drivers, including drivers with violations and drivers under age 20:  
Insurance company
Average monthly rate for drivers with violations
Average monthly rate for young drivers
Bristol West
$192
$271
Dairyland
$187
$242
Gainsco
$168
$243
The General
$231
$296
Kemper
$150
$210
Infinity
$174
$245
National General
$157
$189
Safeco
$160
$218
If you go with a non-standard insurer, your car insurance costs will likely be higher than with a major insurer—but some drivers actually find cheaper rates with non-standard companies. Here’s what drivers in the same categories paid with major providers: 
Insurance company
Average monthly rate for drivers with violations
Average monthly rate for young drivers
Allstate
$170
$219
Nationwide
$152
$217
Progressive
$164
$234
Travelers
$163
$281
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When can insurance companies deny coverage?

In general, insurance companies have the legal right to deny or cancel coverage based on the following factors: 
  • Repeated or serious traffic violations
  • Lapse in insurance coverage or no previous coverage
  • High-performance or collector vehicle
  • High rate of crime or accidents in the garaging location
  • Applicant under age 25
  • Suspended driver’s license or unlicensed driver
  • Low credit score
  • No permanent address
  • Verified health condition posing driving risks
Federal laws prohibit insurance companies from denying coverage based on an applicant’s age, gender, sexual orientation, race, national origin, religion, or marital status—and in some states, like California and Michigan, insurance companies can’t use your credit score to deny coverage. 
If you feel that you’ve been unfairly denied coverage, file a complaint with
your state’s department of insurance
Read More

Special programs, incentives, and discounts for high-risk drivers

Being labeled “high risk” can put you at a disadvantage when it comes to
shopping for auto insurance
—but there are also special programs available to individuals whose driving record, age, or other factors make them high risk. 

If you’ve been denied coverage: Look into state-sponsored assigned-risk coverage

Some drivers can’t get car insurance through conventional shopping. If you’ve been rejected by multiple insurance companies, you may need to enter your state’s assigned risk pool for car insurance. 
Each state has an assigned risk plan that allows drivers who can’t get coverage through the voluntary market to meet the
state’s minimum insurance requirements

State-sponsored assigned risk auto insurance plans

State
Assigned risk auto insurance plan
Alabama
Alaska
Arizona
Arkansas
California
Colorado
Connecticut
Delaware
Florida
Georgia
Hawaii
Idaho
Illinois
Indiana
Iowa
Kansas
Kentucky
Louisiana
Maine
Maryland
Massachusetts
Michigan
Minnesota
Mississippi
Missouri
Montana
Nebraska
Nevada
New Hampshire
New Jersey
New Mexico
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota
Ohio
Oklahoma
Oregon
Pennsylvania
Rhode Island
South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee
Texas
Utah
Vermont
Virginia
Washington
West Virginia
Wisconsin
Wyoming

If you lack experience on the road: Enroll in a driver education program

Drivers with less than three years of driving experience
pay about 14% more, on average, for insurance—and if you’re under age 25, expect even higher rates. 
Inexperienced drivers can enroll in driver education or defensive driving course to improve their driving habits and demonstrate to prospective insurance companies that they’re dedicated to safety. 
Look for approved local courses and check with your insurance company to make sure you’re eligible for a discount.
Keep in mind: Some insurance companies, like State Farm and American Family, have their own safe driving programs to help
teens
and other new drivers learn the rules of the road and adjust their auto insurance rates accordingly. 

If you’re ready to prove you’re a good driver: Sign up for usage-based insurance

Moving violations on your driving history are one of the most common ways to become a high-risk driver. If you’re confident in your driving skills and ready to prove yourself, take advantage of a usage-based safe driving program to work for lower rates. 
Most insurers offer some form of telematics program that allows policyholders to track their driving in exchange for potential discounts. Typically, your usage-based insurance app will track driving behaviors like: 
  • Speeding
  • Hard braking
  • Harsh acceleration
  • Phone use
  • Late-night driving
Using a telematics app won’t automatically make you a low-risk driver: You’ll still have a surcharge on your policy until you
achieve a clean driving record
. But if you practice safe driving habits, you could bring down your base car insurance premiums. Some companies offer a discount just for signing up! 

If you’ve been denied for bad credit: Pay off small bills and update your credit report

In most states, it’s legal for a car insurance company to refuse to sell someone a policy based on their credit history. If that’s your situation, there are a few ways to build your credit to get the auto insurance coverage you need at the best rate: 
  • Pay off small bills: Make sure to pay off your debts on time, starting with the smallest and working your way up. 
  • Focus on repaying existing loans: If you already have a car loan, student loan, or other major debts, focus on paying them off. 
  • Get rent and utilities added to your credit report: In many cases, bills that you pay regularly might not show up on your credit report—and adding them could help to improve your score. 

Never try to conceal high-risk factors from your insurer

No matter what, never attempt to hide a high-risk factor like a car accident or violation from your insurance company. When requesting auto insurance quotes or submitting a claim, always make sure that the information you provide is accurate. 
The possible consequences of lying to your insurance company include: 
  • Your policy could be canceled: If your insurer finds out you’ve concealed information or bent the truth, they can cancel your auto insurance policy outright. 
  • Your premiums could go up: Even if your policy isn’t canceled, you can expect higher premiums on renewal when your insurer discovers the error. 
  • Your claims could be denied: If you’ve entered false information in the past, you might not be able to get coverage if you submit a claim with conflicting information. 
  • You could face criminal charges: Lying to your insurance company constitutes fraud if you did so knowingly and with the intent to keep your rates low. 
Any of these consequences could leave you without sufficient car insurance coverage—and
driving uninsured
is a sure recipe for fines and higher rates down the road. 

High-risk car insurance isn’t forever

Being a high-risk driver is generally a temporary situation. Here’s how long you can expect to stay high-risk: 
  • If you have violations: Most minor violations, like speeding tickets, stay on your record for three to five years, after which the surcharge will be removed and your auto insurance costs will decrease. A serious charge like driving under the influence or reckless driving may remain on your record for 10 years or more. 
  • If you’re a new driver: Drivers with at least three years of driving experience pay about 15% less than brand-new drivers. 
  • If you’re a teen driver: You should see your rates go down by 5 to 10% each year, and by the time you turn 25, your age should have a minimal impact on your premiums. 
  • If you had a car insurance lapse: Maintaining continuous car insurance coverage for just one year can help your rates recover from a lapse. 
  • If you have poor credit: It can take time to build good credit. The time you spend in the high-risk category for auto insurance depends on how long it takes your credit score to rise. 
  • If you own a hard-to-insure vehicle: You’ll likely be dealing with high rates and limited coverage options as long as you own the vehicle—that’s why comparing rates from the best car insurance companies is so important! 

What to do if you feel you’re overpaying for insurance

If you feel you’re overpaying for car insurance based on your high-risk driver status, here’s what you can—and can’t—do. 
You can’t: 
  • Appeal your rates: Car insurance isn’t negotiable; once you have a quote from an insurance company, all you can do is accept or reject it. 
  • Hide information from your insurance company: Concealing or altering information in your insurance paperwork constitutes
    fraud
    and carries a much higher risk than your driver profile. 
You can: 
  • Compare quotes: Don’t just assume that because your profile carries risk, all insurers will quote you an unmanageable price. Use the Jerry app to look at several insurers and find the lowest rates.
  • Raise your deductible: Raising the deductibles on a full coverage car insurance policy is a convenient way to shave a little off your premium without sacrificing coverage. Just be sure you can afford your deductible!
  • Switch insurance companies: If your current insurer raised your rate after an accident or violation—or if you expect them to at your next policy renewal—switching to a different provider could help you lower your insurance costs again.
  • Explore discounts: Too young for affordable insurance? Look into good student discounts and driver education discounts. Poor driving record? Ask your insurer about defensive driving courses and discounts for vehicle safety features.
  • Bundle your policies: Homeowners qualify for some of the biggest car insurance discounts if they purchase auto insurance from the same company as their
    homeowner’s policy
    .
  • Enroll in telematics: Take advantage of the latest tech to let your insurance company track your driving in exchange for safe driver discounts.
  • Exclude a driver: If only one driver in your household is high risk, you may be able to list them as an excluded driver on your policy to minimize the impact of their profile on your rates. 

FAQs

An at-risk driver, usually called a high-risk driver, is someone who is found to have a higher chance of being involved in an accident by auto insurance companies.
Drivers with serious traffic violations, like DUIs or reckless driving charges, are the most significant group of high-risk drivers. Teen drivers also pose a higher risk than most drivers due to limited experience on the road. 
On average, Florida drivers pay around 30% more than the national average for full coverage car insurance—but Floridians with DUIs see an average premium increase of just 47%, making it the second-cheapest state for drivers with DUIs. 
Exotic luxury cars, like Ferraris or Lamborghinis, are a common type of high-risk car that many insurance companies won’t cover. 
A more unexpected category of high-risk vehicles includes certain older Hyundai and Kia models, which have become major targets for auto theft thanks to a TikTok “challenge.”
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