Car accidents in California can be incredibly costly. A drunk driving accident can result in high medical bills and vehicle repair costs. Individuals involved in a wreck often wonder how they’ll pay for their losses or cover the losses of others if they caused the accident.
Find out if insurance companies pay for drunk driving accidents in California with this article. The Simmrin Law Group can help you review the reactions of insurance companies to accidents involving driving under the influence (DUI). Get additional information by calling (310) 997-4688.
Does insurance cover DUI accidents in California?
Generally, insurance companies in California are not required to pay for damages caused by an intentional and illegal act. Upon first consideration, this makes it sound like insurance companies will not pay for drunk driving accidents, as DUIs are illegal.
However, drunk driving accidents often function as an exception to this rule. This is because most drivers who cause a DUI accident are not intentionally attempting to damage their vehicle or hurt someone else.
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Given that exception, does full coverage insurance cover DUI accidents?
Insurance companies may, therefore, sometimes pay for drunk driving accidents in California. Note that this is not true in every drunk driving case, as we will discuss below.
Insurance Payments for DUI Accidents Not Caused by a Drunk Driver
You should be aware that, in the state of California, drunk drivers are not automatically responsible for a car accident. Sometimes, drunk drivers are involved in accidents they did not cause. In this situation:
- The drunk driver would not be responsible for the accident
- Their insurance company would not pay for the accident
California is a comparative negligence state. This means that multiple drivers may be assigned blame for an accident. A drunk driver may be found partially responsible, while a sober driver is given a portion of the fault as well. The insurance companies for both drivers may make some payments in this case.
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Insurance Payments and Intentional DUI Offenses
As we mentioned, many DUI accidents are not considered intentional in the state of California. However, insurance agents do sometimes argue that a driver acted intentionally to:
- Drive while drunk
- Operate a vehicle recklessly
- Raise their risk of causing an accident
Therefore, insurance companies may deny payment for DUI accidents in California in some circumstances. Drivers accused of an intentional DUI accident in California can get help from a criminal defense lawyer in Los Angeles. Speak to a legal professional now by calling (310) 997-4688.
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Insurance Premiums and DUI Convictions in California
Insurance companies may cover the costs associated with drunk driving accidents in California. However, such an accident often leads to monetary consequences for the drunk driver, especially if they caused the collision.
Insurance companies in California are legally allowed to raise a driver’s insurance premiums in some circumstances. Generally, premiums can only be raised when it is time to renew your policy. At this time, the company can raise your rates if:
- You were convicted of a DUI
- You caused an accident
Additionally, insurance companies retain the right to cancel policies offered to drivers who are considered high-risk. Involvement in a DUI accident in California can lead to the loss of a car insurance policy. Note that drivers can only legally operate a vehicle if they have insurance in California. Driving without insurance is considered a criminal act.
Criminal Charges Associated with Drunk Driving Accidents
Thus far in this article, we have discussed drunk driving accidents as they relate to insurance payouts. Such accidents can also have legal repercussions in the court system of California. Driving while impaired is always against the law in California, even if a driver does not cause an accident.
A first-time DUI conviction in California can result in fines, jail time, and license restrictions. Each time a driver is convicted, they will face increased penalties. Drivers may face harsher repercussions if they are found responsible for a drunk driving accident.
Make sure you get professional help handling DUI charges and your insurance company after a drunk driving accident. The Simmrin Law Group can help build you a legal defense and take care of all communication with your insurance company.
Get Legal Help with Insurance Payments for Drunk Driving Accidents
Insurance companies may pay for drunk driving accidents in California, but it is not guaranteed in all cases. You can review your insurance policy with the professionals at the Simmrin Law Group now. Allow us to review your specific situation. Call us at (310) 997-4688 or fill out our online contact form now.
Our DUI lawyers in Los Angeles can help you handle all aspects of a charge for drunk driving. Get started today with a FREE case evaluation.