Driving While Intoxicated (DWI)

Published: | Updated: August 1, 2016

Definition - What does Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) mean?

Driving while intoxicated (DWI) is a crime committed by a person who operates a motor vehicle while impaired by alcohol or drugs, whether prescribed or not, to a level beyond the limit allowed under state laws. In terms of insurance, a person previously convicted for DWI is regarded as high risk and required to pay higher auto insurance rates.

DWI is also known as driving under the influence (DUI), operating under the influence, drinking and driving, drunk driving, or driving over the prescribed limit.

Insuranceopedia explains Driving While Intoxicated (DWI)

Damages incurred by the insured found guilty of DWI may or may not be covered by insurance. On one hand, if the insured driver has liability insurance, damages incurred by a third person are covered. The liability insurance protects the insured driver from having to pay for the medical expenses and the damage to property of the other driver or a third person. On the other hand, the insured auto insurance may not cover their own personal expenses. That is, a person driving while intoxicated may not be able to claim for expenses incurred, like litigation, medical, and damaged property expenses.

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