Rachael Brennan has been working in the insurance industry since 2006 when she began working as a licensed insurance representative for 21st Century Insurance, during which time she earned her Property and Casualty license in all 50 states. After several years she expanded her insurance expertise, earning her license in Health and AD&D insurance as well. She has worked for small health insuran...

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Chris Harrigan has an economic degree from Limestone College and an MBA from Clemson University. He previously managed auto insurance claims for Enterprise Rent-A-Car. Currently, he is using his business and insurance expertise to provide insurance data analysis and visualizations to enhance the user experience.

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Reviewed by Chris Harrigan
Former Auto Insurance Claims Manager

UPDATED: Aug 30, 2021

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Key Takeaways

  • A high-risk driver is any driver that a car insurance company deems more likely to make claims or be in an accident
  • Some of the best auto insurance companies for high-risk drivers include The General, Dairyland, State Farm, GEICO, and Direct Auto
  • High-risk drivers will likely have to pay higher rates for three to five years after a violation

High-risk drivers may have a difficult time finding cheap car insurance since they are more likely to cost the insurance company money. If you have bad credit or one or more traffic violations, you may be a high-risk driver.

What is a high-risk driver?

There is no solid definition for who is considered an at-risk driver since each insurance company uses different criteria to determine risk. In general, a high-risk driver is a person who a car insurance company feels is more likely to file claims or be in an accident.

Read more below about who may be considered a high-risk driver, the best car insurance companies for high-risk drivers, and how much you may have to pay after a driving violation.

Enter your ZIP code into our free quote comparison tool above to get high-risk driver car insurance quotes from companies in your area.

What are the best car insurance companies for high-risk drivers?

High-risk drivers have characteristics that affect their car insurance rates. These may include:

  • DUIs
  • Traffic violations and tickets
  • Young or first-time drivers
  • Gaps in insurance
  • Bad credit
  • Accidents or other driving incidents

If you have one or more of these characteristics, you could be considered a high-risk driver, which could increase your car insurance rates. It could also make it difficult for you to be approved for car insurance. That’s why it’s important to shop around and find the cheapest auto insurance company for high-risk drivers near you.

Get started now. Below is our top five list of the best car insurance companies for high-risk drivers:

The General

The General specializes in providing car insurance for high-risk drivers. It is available in 46 states and offers policies that meet those states’ minimum liability requirements. However, it does not offer higher coverage amounts.

Car insurance products from The General are limited compared to other car insurance companies, but they do offer affordable liability coverage and a few other policies for high-risk drivers.


Some high-risk drivers are required to file an SR-22 form with their state’s Department of Motor Vehicles. If this is the case for you, Dairyland is an affordable high-risk driver car insurance company that can provide the proper documentation.

Dairyland also offers a variety of discounts to help you further save money, but its insurance products are limited compared to larger companies.

State Farm

In 2016, over 10,000 deaths were caused by alcohol-related accidents, about 28% of the total deaths from traffic-related incidents.

Many car insurance companies will raise rates after a driver gets a DUI. State Farm car insurance reviews find that the company is more tolerant of DUIs than other providers, so you’re likely to find cheaper rates through State Farm than other companies if you have one or more DUIs on your driving record. 

State Farm also offers a variety of other insurance products and discounts, which can help you save even more money.


If you are in an at-fault accident or if you get a speeding ticket or similar driving violation, GEICO may be able to give you the best insurance for a bad driving record. They are more likely to give smaller or no rate increases after a violation.

GEICO offers many different ways to save, and they partner with other companies to offer other insurance products.

Direct Auto

Direct Auto is willing to work with high-risk drivers who have bad credit. They provide flexible payment options, and they can provide SR-22 documentation for those who are required to have it for their state’s Department of Motor Vehicles.

If you are unable to find car insurance from any available companies, you may need to seek state assistance from your state’s high-risk insurance pool.

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How much is high-risk driver car insurance?

High-risk driver car insurance rates will vary based on what characteristics deem you a high risk, what company you buy your insurance from, and how much coverage you get.

Below are some average annual rates from some major car insurance companies by driving record:

Average Annual Auto Insurance Rates by Driving Record
CompaniesClean Driving RecordOne Speeding CitationOne AccidentOne DUI
Liberty Mutual$3,184.72$3,442.90$3,811.97$4,044.73
State Farm$3,987.31$4,382.83$4,778.37$4,382.83
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Next, we can take a look at how credit score impacts car insurance rates:

Car Insurance Rates Based on Credit Score
Car Insurance Rates Based on Credit Score Good Credit Fair Credit Poor Credit
American Family$2,691.74$3,169.53$4,467.98
Liberty Mutual$4,388.18$5,604.24$8,802.22
State Farm$2,174.26$2,853.00$4,951.20
Average $3,166.07$3,686.92$5,150.76
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High-risk drivers are going to pay higher rates than people with good credit and a clean driving record.

How long are you considered a high-risk driver? You may have to pay increased rates for three to five years after a violation. Driving education courses may help to reduce your rates, but time is the only thing that will eliminate the label as a high-risk driver.

How can I save on car insurance for high-risk drivers?

There are several ways in which high-risk drivers may be able to reduce their rates over time. However, many of these strategies will take time, and the insurance company is unlikely to reduce your rates to a normal range until you have proven that you are a safe driver.

If you have bad credit, work on increasing your credit score. Do this by making payments on time, pay down your debt, get co-signers when needed, and consider secured credit cards or loans.

You can also take driving education courses, such as defensive driving. Some car insurance companies also offer usage-based insurance (UBI) programs that will reward you for safe driving.

You should also avoid having gaps in coverage. Make sure you have car insurance consistently, even by buying non-owner car insurance if you don’t have a car.

How to Find the Best Car Insurance Companies for High-Risk Drivers

Different car insurance companies may label you as a high-risk driver for different reasons. Some may count drivers with bad credit as high-risk, while others may only consider traffic violations and accidents.

However, if you’re looking for auto insurance that doesn’t check your driving record, you’re out of luck. All car insurance companies will check your driving history. Some may accept self-declared driving histories, but this could result in higher rates.

If you’re looking to buy high-risk driver car insurance, enter your ZIP code into our free quote comparison tool below.