You’ve likely heard that auto insurance is all about risk, and the price of a policy is largely based on how much risk is involved (as well as several other factors). Some drivers are considered high-risk, which means they need high-risk auto insurance. If you’re curious about what these policies entail, keep reading for some valuable information!
What is high-risk auto insurance?
High-risk auto insurance is a specific type of coverage built for drivers who are deemed high-risk. These drivers are considered more likely to make an auto insurance claim for being in an at-fault accident than drivers with a normal insurance risk.
What makes a driver high-risk?
There are several things that can result in a driver being classified as high-risk.
- Multiple tickets
- Driving a high-risk vehicle
- Multiple at-fault collisions
- A poor driving record, including DUIs
Interestingly, insurance companies tend to have their own criteria for exactly what makes a driver high-risk. For example, the threshold for some companies to deem a driver high-risk might be 5 speeding tickets within 5 years, while for other companies that threshold could be 3 tickets in 5 years.
What happens when I become a high-risk driver?
Most drivers know to expect an increase in their auto insurance premium after they’re in an at-fault accident, commit a traffic offense, or other driving related incidents. But what many people don’t know is that their auto insurance could be cancelled entirely.
High-risk auto insurance tips
If you’ve already been deemed a high-risk driver, your premium could go down over time. But this will take a clean driving record, as well some other considerations.
Here are some ways to help lower your auto insurance risk and save you money on your policy:
- Avoid getting tickets by practicing safe driving
- Keep proper documentation in your vehicle at all times
- Utilize your cruise control to minimize your risk of speeding
- To prevent distracted driving tickets or accidents, use hands-free, voice-activated technology to use your phone
Distracted driving in Utah
This importance of using a hands free device while you’re driving is a critical point because more and more drivers are being classified as high-risk after violating distracted driving laws. Under Utah Code 41-6a-1716(2), texting and driving is prohibited, along with using a cellphone to:
- Dial phone numbers
- Go on the internet
- Record videos
- Send email messages
- Use instant messaging services (like Facebook Messenger)
- View videos
- Otherwise “enter data into a handheld wireless communication device”
These are in violation of the law if they’re done manually. That means, using your cell phone with voice activated and hands free technology — rather than manual input — is permitted.
The law does make a few exceptions when drivers can use their phone manually. The current laws state it is legal to use your phone for any of the following purposes while driving:
- Talking on the phone (NOT dialing, however)
- Reporting a medical emergency (e.g. calling 9-1-1)
- Reporting a safety hazard
- Reporting criminal activity
- Viewing a GPS or navigation device, including apps
If you’d like to learn more about how to save money on the best car insurance policy that gives you all of the coverage you need, get in touch with ASA Insurance today!