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Do demerit points affect your car insurance?

It depends on the insurer and if they ask about demerit points or not.

Our insurance experts got quotes from 5 popular car insurance providers. Of that, 3 didn't ask about demerit points at all leaving the premium unaffected. The remaining 2 that did ask about demerit points showed that price can vary by as much as $800 for those with a clean driving record versus those without.

Why do demerit points affect your insurance?

Demerit points matter because insurers base your policy cost on a range of factors, including things like age, gender and driving history. The more likely you are to get into an accident based on past behaviour, the less willing they are to insure you as the chances of you claiming are higher. Since demerit points are earned by doing dangerous things like speeding or texting and driving, insurers use them as just another piece of the puzzle when determining how well you actually drive, which affects the cost of what they'll offer you.

How long do they affect your insurance?

Generally, demerit points last for three years from the date of the offence. In some cases, offences from more than three years ago may still apply because it can take time for the relevant state government to be informed of the offence (for example, if a court case is involved). Once expired, offences should be dropped from your driving record and therefore no longer affect any premiums. It's important to always make sure your driving record is up-to-date and correct before applying for auto insurance to avoid incorrect charges.

Finder survey: How many Australians have accrued demerit points for a driving offence?

I have never driven before1.59%
Source: Finder survey by Pure Profile of 1006 Australians, December 2023

How to check demerit points

If you're worried about your own driving record and how many demerit points you may already have, you should be able to find out online.

  • NSW: Check online via ServiceNSW
  • WA: Check online via Transport WA
  • QLD: Check online via Transport and Main Roads
  • SA: Check online via mySAGOV
  • NT: online via the NT GOV website
  • TAS: only available via phone call; 1300 13 55 13.
  • ACT: call Access Canberra on 13 22 81 or visit an Access Canberra Service Centre
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