Can You Get Car Insurance in Michigan After a DUI?

You might lose your Michigan car insurance after a DUI, or your provider could charge you more for insurance coverage.
Written by Jessica Gibson
Edited by Sarah Gray
If you’re a
driver and you’ve landed yourself a
charge, your
car insurance
situation is about to change drastically. On top of higher rates, you’ll also have to deal with an SR-22 certificate.
  • You might be able to get insurance after getting a DUI, but it will cost significantly more.
  • You’ll face more penalties and steeper fines if you’re repeatedly charged with a DUI.
  • Michigan requires you to get an SR-22 certificate to confirm that you meet the state’s minimum liability coverage.

Can you get car insurance in Michigan after a DUI?

If you’ve been charged with a DUI in Michigan, your car insurance company will increase your rates significantly—that is if they let you renew at all. It’s possible that your insurance provider will drop you altogether since you’ll be labeled as a
high-risk driver
. Companies try to steer clear of drivers that may cost them more money. 
If that happens, you’ll need to find new car insurance ASAP. While finding car insurance after a DUI conviction isn’t impossible, finding
cheap car insurance
after a DUI might be—as a high-risk driver, your quotes for coverage are guaranteed to skyrocket. In Michigan, drivers with DUIs pay up to
191% more for insurance coverage
than drivers without a DUI. 

Michigan’s DUI laws and penalties

First off, a DUI in Michigan can be categorized into several different (and confusing) categories, which include the following:
  • OUIL (operating under the influence of intoxicating liquor): Applicable if it’s believed that the driver consumed enough alcohol to substantially reduce their ability to operate a vehicle (no test necessary). 
  • OWVI (operating while visibly impaired): Applicable when a driver is impaired enough that another person would notice their inability to operate a vehicle safely.
  • UBAL (unlawful bodily alcohol level/content): Applies when a driver’s BAC is found to be above the 0.08% legal limit.
  • OWI (operating while intoxicated): The overall term for any of the previous charges that can (but don’t have to) include an OUIL or UBAL.
Since all of these terms can get complicated, for this article, we’ll just stick with calling it an OWI or DUI. According to
Michigan’s DUI laws
, it’s illegal for a driver to operate a vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of at least 0.08% or is under the influence of alcohol or any controlled substance. 
All states also have an implied consent law, which means you automatically consent for your BAC to be tested if you have a
Michigan driver’s license
and are presumed to be driving under the influence. Refusing a BAC test in Michigan will come with a fine of up to $150 and an automatic one-year driver's license suspension. 
If you’re officially charged with an OWI in Michigan, here’s
what you can expect after each offense

First offense OWI

If your BAC is below 0.17% and you’ve never been charged with an OWI before, you’ll face the following consequences:
  • Up to a $500 fine
  • Up to 93 days in jail
  • Up to 360 hours (45 days) of community service
  • Up to 180 days of
    license suspension
  • 6 driver's license points
Even if it is your first offense, if your BAC is .17% or higher, the consequences get more serious:
  • Up to a $700 fine
  • Up to 180 days in jail
  • Up to 360 hours of community service
  • Up to one year of license suspension
  • 6 points on a driver's license
  • Mandatory completion of an alcohol treatment program
In order to
get your license back
after the 45-day license suspension period, you’ll also have to use an ignition interlock device to get a restricted driver's license. 

Second offense DWI

Earning a second DWI charge in Michigan increases the penalties to the following:
  • Up to a $1,000 fine
  • Up to one year in jail
  • Up to 90 days of community service
  • Minimum of one year of license suspension (up to five-year maximum)
  • Vehicle immobilization for up to 180 days

Third offense DWI

If you run up a third DWI charge, you can expect the following penalties:
  • Up to a $5,000 fine
  • Up to five years in jail
  • Up to 180 days of community service
  • Up to five years of license suspension
  • Vehicle immobilization for up to three years 

Other penalties

Other than expensive fines and possible jail time, all Michigan drivers convicted of drunk driving are hit with a $1,000 penalty for two consecutive years under the
Driver Responsibility Act
, adding up to a total of $2,000 in extra costs. In some cases, drivers can apply for a restricted license with an ignition interlocking device—which you’ll be financially responsible for.
Other than your car insurance rates increasing, your DUI charge will also appear on any background checks. As in most states, a DUI charge will stay on your Michigan driving record for life.

How to get car insurance after a DUI 

Once you get the green light to hit the road, you’ll need car insurance before you can get back behind the wheel. Most states, including Michigan, require drivers with major violations to get
SR-22 insurance
before they can drive again. 
SR-22 insurance isn’t actually a
type of insurance
policy—it’s an official certificate an insurance company files with the Michigan Department of State (DOS) to confirm that you’re covered with the
state’s minimum required liability coverage
Not all auto insurance providers offer
Michigan SR-22 insurance
, so make sure you ask your provider if filing your SR-22 is an option. Auto insurance providers in Michigan typically charge an extra $15 to $25 to file an SR-22. 
Here’s how to start the process of getting your DUI insurance coverage:
  • If you already have car insurance coverage, you’ll just contact your insurance agent to ask them to file the SR-22 form for you. It’s important to note that not all companies provide this service, so it’s possible you may need to
    shop online
    for a new policy. 
  • If you need to buy a new car insurance policy, you’ll start the car insurance shopping process like normal—by comparing insurance quotes from multiple companies. Since not all companies offer SR-22 insurance, using an
    online comparison tool
    will narrow down your search to the companies that have what you need. This will also help you find the
    cheapest car insurance
    available for your situation. 

How much does auto insurance in Michigan cost after a DUI?

According to Forbes, a DUI in Michigan can elevate your annual auto insurance rates by around 191% on average! For comparison,
drivers’ rates jump to 131% after a DUI,
drivers pay 94% more for coverage after a DUI, and drivers in
South Carolina
only pay 49% more for insurance after a DUI. 
The average
full coverage
policy in Michigan costs $2,995—but with a drunk driving conviction, that average jumps to around $8,719 for the same full coverage policy. All providers weigh violations differently, though, and your exact costs will also depend on your driving history before the DUI. On top of that, your car insurance costs are influenced by a variety of factors that have nothing to do with your driving record—like your ZIP code, your vehicle, and your gender. 
A DUI is one of the most serious driving violations, and insurance companies don’t take them lightly. Finding a cheap car insurance policy won’t be easy, but you can find the most affordable car insurance by comparing prices across as many companies as possible. 

Best car insurance companies for Michigan drivers with a DUI

When you have a DUI on your record, finding the most affordable car insurance policy is critical. For the most part, Michigan drivers with DUIs and other major infractions find the best rates with
Bristol West
are also good options for drivers looking for DUI car insurance. 
That being said, these may not be the best options for your unique situation, so make sure to do your homework instead of settling for the first policy you find. 


A DUI stays on your Michigan driving record for life. In some cases, you may be able to have it expunged from your criminal record after five years, but that’s unlikely to affect your driving record.
Car insurance companies will cover DUI accidents in most cases. However, you can expect increased rates afterward—or your car insurance provider may choose to drop you altogether.
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