How a driver rehabilitation course affects bans and car insurance
There’s no question about it; being convicted of a driving offence is not good for your life in general, and it certainly won’t help to keep your motor insurance premiums affordable.
But of course, life happens, and some of us may end up with points on our licence, a driving ban or a criminal conviction at some point. If this is the situation that you are in or look likely to be in soon, you might have heard about driver rehabilitation courses from a reliable hardship license lawyer, and you may be curious as to whether taking one would enable you to reduce your ban or lower your insurance costs.
But of course, life happens, and some of us may end up with points on our licence, a driving ban or a criminal conviction at some point. If this is the situation that you are in or look likely to be in soon, you might have heard about driver rehabilitation courses, and you may be curious as to whether taking one would enable you to reduce your ban or lower your insurance costs.
Introducing drink-drive rehabilitation courses
When a lot of Britons are asked about driver rehabilitation courses, they might initially be put in mind of drink-drive rehabilitation courses. As detailed by the GOV.UK website, this type of course can be offered to a driver who has been found guilty of a drink-drive offence with a resulting ban of 12 months or more.
While – if such a course is offered to you in the aftermath of your conviction – you will need to pay as much as £250 for it, completing the course within a certain time will usually reduce your ban by a quarter. Bear in mind that you’ll need to make the decision in court as to whether to take a course, and that you won’t be able to change your mind later.
But there are also courses available for other driving offences
Driver rehabilitation courses aren’t only relevant to drink drivers. Indeed, of the more than 1.4 million offenders who chose to attend a National Driving Offender Scheme (NDORS) course in 2015, 86% of them – some 1.2 million people – actually took speed awareness courses.
The website of road safety charity Brake provides more details on the various driver rehabilitation schemes running in the UK today. Naturally, it’s a good idea to do your research on these courses in light of your own situation, not only to determine the potential impact on driving bans or insurance premiums, but also to check whether you would be eligible to take such a course in the first place.
The most frequently taken NDORS course, for instance – the National Speed Awareness Course (NSAC) – serves as an alternative to the fixed penalty notice and penalty points that you would otherwise be hit with, if you were to be found guilty of a speeding offence.
Remember that, as outlined by the UK government website, you can be banned – otherwise known as ‘disqualified’ – from driving if you are convicted of a driving offence or accumulate 12 or more penalty points within three years. So, taking a driver rehabilitation course could greatly help you to avoid or reduce the length of a driving ban.
What about the impact on insurance costs?
There’s both good news and bad news on this one. While – according to the convicted driver insurance specialists at MoneyBeach – you can’t guarantee that a given insurer will give you a better deal if you take a driver rehabilitation course, insurers do look favourably upon such courses.
After all, insurers are anxious to minimise their risk when they take someone on as a policyholder, and you’re likely to be seen as at lower risk of reoffending if you do attend such a course.
This is backed up by a further statistic from Brake, that up to two years after an initial drink-drive conviction, offenders who failed to attend a rehabilitation course were found to be 2.6 times likelier to be convicted for a subsequent drink-drive offence, than those who did attend.
In short, then, whether you’re facing the prospect of a ban, higher insurance premiums or (likely) both, a driver rehabilitation course could turn out to be more than worth your while.