Jessica Sautter is a Content Writer for CarInsuranceCompanies.com with a Bachelor’s Degree from Eastern Michigan University in Elementary Education with a Major in Reading and a Minor in Mathematics.

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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: Oct 13, 2020

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Here's what you need to know...

  • In determining whether to off you auto insurance coverage and what rate you will pay for insurance coverage, insurance companies check your driving record along with other information about you.
  • It does not pay to lie about your driving record or try to cover up an accident or ticket because the insurance company can verify all of that information.
  • It pays to shop around for different auto insurance companies when trying to get the lowest rate because they may consider your driving record differently in determining the premium that you will pay for auto insurance coverage.
  • The amount of time since a driving infraction or claim for an auto accident will matter in terms of your auto insurance rate.

It probably comes as no surprise that your driving record has an impact on the price that you pay for auto insurance.

Keep in mind that even if you are asked questions about your driving record by an auto insurance agent, the auto insurance company will verify that information independently before signing off on your auto insurance policy.

The length of time that an auto insurance company looks back for your driving record will vary. Enter your zip code above to find the best car insurance rates for your budget!

Table of Contents

What is included in your driving record?

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Your driving record contains much more than simply a list of the accidents that you have been involved in. Rather, this can be a very detailed report and include plenty of personal information about you.

Basically, though, the better your driving record looks, the lower the premium you can expect to pay for auto insurance and the more auto insurance options will be available to you.

Your driving record will include instances where you have been cited for any moving violations. It will also include auto accidents that you have been involved in. If you have any suspensions or restrictions on your driver’s license, these will also show up on your official driving record.

Crimes involving a traffic offense, such as a DUI, will be visible on your driving record too. All of the information that can be obtained from your driver’s license, such as your age, date of birth, height, weight and eye color, can also be included in your official driving record.

If you would like to obtain a copy of your driving record as you are shopping around for auto insurance rate quotes, you can contact your state department of motor vehicles.

This will help you verify any information that the auto insurance company may ask about your driving record. Before you shop around for an auto insurance policy, you could look into ways to have any existing points removed or reduced from your official driving record.

You may also be able to purchase a copy of your driving record from a third party company, but this may not be the official version of your driving record.

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Ways to Counteract a Poor Driving Record

Just because your driving record is not as stellar as you would like it to be, does not mean that you are hopeless in trying to get a lower premium for your auto insurance coverage.

First of all, you should ask your auto insurance company about any discounts they may offer for you taking a driving safety course. Upon completion of the course, your auto insurance company may consider you to be a lower risk to insurance and will lower your auto insurance rate accordingly.

In fact, some auto insurance companies also offer a discount on your auto insurance rates if you install anti-theft equipment or devices in your vehicle.

Another thing that you should find out from your auto insurance agent if you have any negative history on your driving record is how far back the look back period goes for your driving record for that particular auto insurance company.

For instance, some auto insurance companies look back for a longer period of time in including accidents and moving violations in their evaluation of your driving record in terms of determining the rate that you will pay for auto insurance.

This is why it is definitely beneficial to shop around as much as you can for different auto insurance rates.

Other Factors that Companies Consider in Determining Rates

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In addition to examining your driving record, there are many other factors that come into play in determining the rate that you will pay for auto insurance.

Every insurance company uses a different evaluation of these factors to determine the risk that you pose as an insured driver and ultimately the rate that you will pay for auto insurance coverage.

Believe it or not, your credit score can also come into play for your auto insurance premium. Auto insurance companies rely on this information in quoting you a rate because they think that financial responsibility is a good indicator of how safe of a driver you probably are.

It also gives them an idea of how reliable you will be in making your premium payments for your policy.

Your zip code is another thing that determines your auto insurance rates. If you live in an urban area, the auto insurance company will assume that the crime rate and traffic congestion levels are higher, which makes it more likely that you will eventually file a claim under your auto insurance policy.

Unfortunately, this means that you will probably pay a higher rate for auto insurance if you live in a major city.

Along with these factors and your driving record, the type of car you are driving will also affect the rate that you pay for auto insurance. For instance, if you drive a flashy or exotic car, you will probably pay a higher rate for auto insurance than if you drive a minivan.

Your Driving Record and Auto Insurance Companies

Any auto insurance company that provides you a quote for an auto insurance policy will most definitely consider your driving record in determining the rate that you will pay for the policy.

Every auto insurance company considers risks differently, which is why it is important to shop around for multiple quotes. Also, if your driving record is very good, then you may be able to get a safe driver discount from your auto insurance company.

Make sure that you are proactive in asking about all of the discounts that you could qualify for on your auto insurance premium.

Enter your zip code below to compare car insurance rates from multiple companies at once!