Wednesday, January 10, 2024

What Are the Best things Drivers Can Do to Improve their Driving Record?

My brief expert opinion in WalletHub:

Why is it important for drivers to check their Driving Record?

Much like people's credit scores and records, drivers need to inspect their driving records and be aware of relevant laws. There may be errors in the record that need correction. Also, incidents that occurred many years ago may still be listed although applicable law requires them to be expunged after, say, five years.

How often should drivers check their Driving Record?

Drivers should inspect their driving record if there is a change in their insurance premium if they plan to shop for and change insurance carriers, or every five years at the latest.

What is the best thing to do if drivers see an error on their Driving Record?

Drivers need to contact the DMV or relevant authority to request a correction and inform their auto insurance carrier of the error.

What are the best things drivers can do to improve their Driving Record?

Traffic safety clinics and defensive driving schools are good places to start improving a problematic driving record. Issues with drugs and alcohol must be dealt with; at a minimum, alternatives need to be found to avoid impaired driving at all times. Drivers with a propensity to speed would benefit by joining car racing clubs which provide safe ways to drive at high speed at race tracks and other venues off the public roads.

Is it Fair for Car Insurance Companies to Consider Gender, Age and Driver Occupation?

My brief expert opinion in WalletHub:

Insurance companies are under substantial strain from increasing losses due to many reasons such as extreme weather (e.g., floods that damage vehicles), increasing number of crashes and fatalities, increasing rates of distracted and impaired drivers (e.g., more states have legalized marijuana), etc.

These losses have necessitated increases in premiums. A fairer distribution of increases is done by assessing risk factors and assessing higher premiums for higher-risk drivers. Young male drivers and occupations with driving as a major part of the job (e.g., Uber, delivery workers) are examples of groups associated with higher crash involvement rates.

I have a good example of risk-based car insurance premiums in my own household. My spouse and my daughter have their own car and insurance. Both are insured by the same insurance company, and both drive 2018 model compact cars of similar market value. My spouse is a white-collar worker in her late 40s. My daughter is a 21-year-old college senior; her premium is 65% higher than her mom's!