April 17, 2011

How Auto Insurance Rates Can Be Customized For Special Needs Drivers

People with handicaps and special needs often still need to drive, and if they’re cleared by their states of residence to operate a motor vehicle, they’re legally allowed to do so–provided that they have an appropriate amount of auto insurance. Many special needs drivers wonder about the best ways to keep their auto insurance rates low, and more urgently, they wonder whether they’ll be penalized with higher than average rates or denied auto insurance coverage due to their special needs. These are valid concerns, but fortunately they’re unfounded.

Special needs drivers should know that discrimination on the basis of a handicap is illegal in the United States and in many other countries. A car insurance company cannot raise its rates or deny coverage simply because a person has a disability. This is due to the Americans with Disabilities Act, which ensured that this type of discrimination could result in heavy fines for the insurance companies that practice it. Ironically, discrimination on the basis of a handicap would actually be beneficial to many drivers, as handicapped drivers tend to have safer driving habits and records than non-handicapped drivers according to insurance company actuarial statistics. Nevertheless, the ADA is intended to protect special needs drivers and to ensure that a driver’s record, location and vehicle are the main factors that a car insurance company uses when deciding auto insurance rates.

With this in mind, special needs drivers can use the same techniques to lower their rates that any other driver would use. Some effective means of getting lower car insurance quotes include taking driving courses, as most insurance companies offer discount programs where legal for drivers who complete these brief classes. Safer vehicles will also result in lower rates, so checking safety ratings before buying a car is always a good idea. Parking location is an important factor in the auto insurance rates of all drivers, and special needs drivers should carefully evaluate their insurance needs to avoid overspending on unnecessary coverage.

The best way to keep rates low is to compare as many auto insurance quotes online as possible. This tactic allows drivers to see both the best and the worst insurance plans that providers offer. Special needs drivers don’t need to disclose their handicap statuses while comparing quotes online, but they should be sure to get a variety of quotes and to read through each option to see whether or not it provides an adequate amount of coverage. Comparing quotes is the best way to get a working knowledge of car insurance and the best way to find a low rate, regardless of a driver’s handicaps.