Rachel Bodine graduated from college with a BA in English. She has since worked as a Feature Writer in the insurance industry and gained a deep knowledge of state and countrywide insurance laws and rates. Her research and writing focus on helping readers understand their insurance coverage and how to find savings. Her expert advice on insurance has been featured on sites like PhotoEnforced, All...

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Leslie Kasperowicz holds a BA in Social Sciences from the University of Winnipeg. She spent several years as a Farmers Insurance CSR, gaining a solid understanding of insurance products including home, life, auto, and commercial and working directly with insurance customers to understand their needs. She has since used that knowledge in her more than ten years as a writer, largely in the insurance...

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Reviewed by Leslie Kasperowicz
Former Farmers Insurance CSR

UPDATED: Oct 30, 2020

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In insurance company parlance a preferred auto insurance policy is a policy which is offered at preferential terms for drivers who have outstanding history of previous driving. This means those people who are able to show they abide by the rules of the road and have a clean record (no violations, citations, etc.) and have no (or very little) claims record on previous polices and who have a reasonable amount of previous driving experience.preferred auto

Sometimes also known as preferred risk insurance too, the auto insurance company prefers to insure drivers like this because they are statistically less of a risk for them as they are less likely to be involved in an accident and make a claim under their insurance policy.

How do I become a preferred risk driver?

There are some simple means to improve your chances of becoming a preferred risk driver, many within your control and some that are not:

  • Firstly, you must have a minimum number (and ideally none) of moving violations – a moving violation is when you receive a ticket for breaking the legal rules of the road whilst your vehicle is in motion. For example; speeding tickets, DUI, reckless driving, illegal U-turns, switching lanes in a dangerous manner, driving without due care and attention, etc. Essentially it’s anything that an external observer would consider to be unsafe, and if you get caught you’ll lose your preferred risk status
  • Secondly, you’ll probably have to be over the age of 25 and that’s because younger drivers have more accidents, it doesn’t mean that every young driver is reckless or incompetent in their approach to the road but the insurer doesn’t have the resources to work out whether or not you are and you may well have to be under the age of 70 too – that’s because health problems for this age group can increase the risk of accidents
  • It’s also possible that the insurer may look at the area you live in, and other external factors up to and including your credit score (though this is usually because they can’t determine from everything else quite whether or not you are a low risk driver)

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What’s the advantage of being a preferred risk driver?

That’s simple; you get a big discount on premiums compared to other drivers so driving safely has financial as well as personal rewards.