While locked up, felons cannot move about freely. Many long for the feel of the open road and being able to drive once again.
This is a privilege many felons find they miss a lot, just being able to get into the car and drive. There is a sense of freedom and power in being able to get out on the open road again.
This blog post will cover the question of whether a felon can get car insurance.
- Valid Driver’s License
- Car Insurance
- Alternative Policies
- Making Their Case
- Supporting a Felon in Getting Car Insurance
Valid Driver’s License
After their release from prison, felons wanting to drive again, first must have a valid driver’s license.
Depending on how long their sentence was, and often it was quite lengthy, many felons come out of prison without a valid driver’s license.
Since most felons report to a halfway house for a period of time upon release, one of the stipulations they must meet in getting a job is to obtain a valid driver’s license.
Ok. Now that they have their driver’s license, then what?
Well, felons must have a car to drive. Perhaps it is the vehicle they drove before they were locked up. They may be able to buy one, or they may a family member provide one for them.
Anyway, if they do have a car, in order to drive it, they must have it insured.
In the U.S., anyone who drives a car is required to have car insurance.
Car insurance companies are not concerned with felons’ criminal history unless it involves their credit rating or their driving history.
Car insurance companies do a background check. Wait a minute!
The background check they do is of their driving record from the Motor Vehicle Report (MVR). Driving violations and related felonies will show up but not convictions for crimes that don’t involve driving.
Especially difficult is a felony conviction for DUI, as it places felons in the risky driver status. Even texting and driving, if it results in a felony conviction, places felons in this category.
So, if the conviction is not for a driving-related offense, it will not show up in the MVR.
Those who have a felony DUI may be considered to be a high risk to insure and may be denied coverage by some insurance companies. In that case, they must keep looking for another insurance company.
Typically, car insurance companies look at the past three years driving history.
So what if felons have been in prison for more than three years? Does that mean they can get coverage with no questions asked?
Not so fast!
An important factor companies consider is whether or not the applicant has been without insurance coverage for a period of time. If so, they can be considered to be a higher risk and will have to pay a higher premium for at least the first six months.
For those, taking out a six-month policy can get them through this high-risk time period.
Anyway, car insurance can be expensive, which can be a hardship for felons struggling to just find a job, although there are many companies that will hire them.
There are different categories of car insurance available that can have a lower rate. It would be in felons’ best interest to consider these different types in order to comply with the law requiring car insurance.
The first type is compulsory third party insurance, which is mandatory for all vehicle owners. This type of insurance does not cover the felons’ vehicle or property. It covers only the victims of an accident with the policy holder.
Next, is third party car insurance, which covers the damage to other people’s car or property, but not the insured’ vehicle.
The third type of insurance is called comprehensive car insurance. This means that it will cover all damage or losses sustained in an accident of all persons involved.
While it can be discouraging facing these prospects, whether felons have a driving-related conviction or because of being incarcerated for a length of time and having higher rates, felons must not give up.
There are options available.
Making Their Case
Felons must remember that it is essential that they are honest about their criminal record when applying for car insurance. If not, they can easily put themselves in the position of being denied coverage by an insurance company.
Not every company they contact may accept them.
Being denied coverage by one company makes it even more difficult to find car insurance. They may have to keep searching, so they shouldn’t make it more difficult by lying on an application.
Not only that, but if they lie and are turned down by one company, when they do find an insurance company that will accept them, they run the risk of paying an even higher premium than the first company quoted them.
So, they should give themselves the best chance from the start.
Some things felons may want to consider when wanting to get affordable car insurance is to purchase a cheaper car that won’t cost as much to insure.
For those convicted of a DUI, they may want to take a substance abuse course or enroll in safe driving courses to increase their chances of getting coverage.
In making their case, felons with a driving related felony may want to have their record expunged to wipe it out and greatly increase their chances of qualifying for car insurance.
It is important not to give up. Getting that job with a felony is not easy, and neither will getting car insurance. The Free Guide to Getting Employment has success stories.
Persistence will pay off. Just stick to it and keep trying.
Supporting a Felon in Getting Car Insurance
For families of felons wanting to get car insurance, stand by them. All of you have been through extremely difficult times already. Don’t let your loved one give up.
Be square with them and let them know the importance of not lying on an insurance application. After all, not being honest put them in the situation they are in now.
Remind them of how proud they will be to live an honest life, buy a vehicle, and be able to get it insured. That will provide them the opportunity to establish more independence and responsibility again.
They will not only be able to drive, but they will once again be able to own and legally drive that vehicle.
So what do you think about this blog post about whether felons can get car insurance? Have you or someone you know gotten car insurance after a felony conviction? What was that experience like, and how were they successful? Please tell us in the comments below.