Yes. Your credit score can be used to set your insurance premium and determine your eligibility for coverage in Georgia. Your credit score is used to determine your so-called insurance score, which has more of an effect than most other factors when it comes to what you pay each month.
Your auto insurance company bases your premium on a number of factors, and one of those is your driving record. Being a good driver can lead to significant savings on your car insurance. In fact, Georgia state law requires a 10% discount for drivers 25 and older who have had no at-fault accidents and have maintained a clean driving record for three years. Other discounts that can reduce the cost of your insurance include:
- Teen Driver
- Distant Student
- Alternative Fuel
- Defensive Driver
- Good Student
- Anti-Lock Brake
- Anti-Theft Device
- Multiple Line
- Passive Restraint
- Vehicle Safety
Digital proof of insurance is not only accepted, but mandatory in Georgia. In the state, a standard ID card cannot be accepted as evidence of coverage. All law enforcement and government agencies will check the Georgia Electronic Insurance Compliance System to verify your coverage electronically. Carrying a standard ID card, however, is a recommended way to exchange information with another driver if you’re involved in an accident.
Driving without insurance in Georgia is a major offense. Even if you stay out of your car, a lapse in coverage can result in suspension of your license, inability to renew your registration, and reinstatement fees.
It is illegal for Georgians to operate a motor vehicle with the following BAC percentages:
.08%+ at 21 years old or older
.04%+ for commercial vehicle drivers
.02%+ at under 21 years old
Georgia has a zero-tolerance law for drivers under 21 that operate a vehicle with alcohol in their systems. This results in very harsh punishments for young persons convicted of a DUI in the state.
The state’s “implied consent” law states that if you’re arrested by a law enforcement officer who has probable cause to suspect you’ve been driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, you consent to a chemical test of your breath, blood, or urine. Refusing to take this test can result in suspension of your driver’s license for at least one year.
For a first DUI offense in Georgia, you could face up to one year in jail, a fine up to $1,000, up to one year suspension of driving privileges, 40 hours of community service, and probation. You may also be required to attend a DUI education course and install an ignition interlock device in your vehicle.
Subsequent offenses carry harsher penalties. Plus, a DUI will result in considerably higher insurance rates for many years.
Yes. Georgia drivers who receive points on their driving record due to a moving or non-moving traffic violation may elect to attend a driver improvement course. Successful completion prevents points from being assessed and ensures your insurance company doesn’t increase your premium. For a list of certified defensive driving and driver improvement schools, visit the Georgia Department of Driver Services website.
The easiest way to keep your insurance rates low is by being a safe driver and following all Georgia traffic laws. Monitor your credit and work to keep or get it high, avoid lapses in coverage, and shop around and compare rates to help keep your costs low, too.
Uninsured motorist insurance may be included on a policy in Georgia, but it’s not required; only liability insurance is mandatory. However, uninsured motorist coverage is highly recommended because it protects you if you’re involved in an accident with a driver who does not have any or adequate coverage.