Insurance Penalties For Michigan Drivers Are Higher Than Most Of The Country

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You already know that Michigan is the most expensive state when it comes to owning a car. Here’s part of the reason behind that. A report released by has determined that Michigan is one of the states with the highest insurance penalties in the U.S.

The report looked at several types of moving violations, including speeding 31 miles per hour over the limit, reckless driving, and DUI/DWI. It then found the average premium increase in each state for each category.

The average increase for insurance rates vary greatly between states, even for the same offense. One thing was consistent, however: Michigan made it into the top five in terms of percent increase.


If you’re given a speeding ticket in Michigan, the report found that your car insurance rate will increase by an average of 49.73 percent. That increase comes in second to Illinois’ 98.65 percent increase. The national average in insurance rate increase for this offense is 29 percent.

Out of all 50 states, Michigan comes in third in the reckless driving category. Michiganders who are charged with reckless driving can expect to see a 116.43 percent increase in their insurance rates. Hawaii came in first in this category with a 290.68 percent increase. The national average is an 85 percent increase in rates.

In the DUI/DWI category, Michigan came in fifth, which means you’ll probably see a 119.58 percent increase in your insurance rates if you’re ticketed. North Carolina won in this category with a 333.85 percent increase to rates. The national average is a 94 percent increase.

So why the different increases for different categories? Part of it has to do with the amount of risk you present as a driver. If you get a speeding ticket, you’re deemed less risky than someone who’s charged with reckless driving or a DUI. However, you still have an increase in your insurance rate because speeding is riskier than not speeding.

“The bottom line is that the riskier a driver is, the more expensive he or she is to insure,” says Eli Lehrer, president of the nonprofit research group the R Street Institute. “And, in general, the moving violations that result in larger premium increases correlate more closely with future claims behavior.”

What about the difference in rate increases between states? That has to do with how car insurance companies are allowed to determine rates. According to Doug Heller, an independent consumer advocate with the Consumer Federation of America, some states can use “a whole host of rating factors that aren’t in any way related to how someone drives.”

Some states allow companies to use factors like credit score, marital status, and occupation in addition to a person’s driving record.

The averages used in this study are based on a 45-year-old married, employed female with a clean driving record driving a 2013 sedan. She has a bachelor’s degree, an excellent credit score, no lapses in coverage and the following limits: $100,000/$300,000 (bodily injury), $100,000 (property damage), $100,000/$300,000 (UI/UIM), $10,000 (PIP) and a $500 deductible.

What does that mean for you? If you’re male, unmarried, or younger than 45, you can likely expect to see a higher increase in your rates if you get ticketed. Young, unmarried, or male drivers are generally viewed as riskier.

The moral of the story – Drive safely. You can’t afford not to, especially in Michigan.

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