If you’re convicted of driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, the consequences can be quite far-reaching. You might expect to spend time in jail or do community service and lose your driver’s license. You’ll also be out money for fines and court fees and be required to carry something called SR22 insurance for a few years.
Let’s take a look at what it is and what’s involved in getting it.
What Is SR22 Insurance?
SR22 insurance isn’t insurance or a policy. Instead, it’s a special proof of insurance certification issued by your car insurance company to prove you have at least the minimum liability coverage required by your state. It’s also called a Certificate of Financial Responsibility.
Once you’ve purchased your SR22, your insurer should file it with the state on your behalf. You’ll have to keep proof of your SR22 in your vehicle with your regular insurance card.
Why a DUI Requires It
The average drunk driver has driven under the influence more than 80 times before their first arrest, and about one-third of all drivers arrested or convicted of a DUI are repeat offenders.
As a result, getting a DUI puts you in a category of drivers deemed high risk. Not only are there severe consequences in terms of the damage a drunk driver can cause, but the statistics show that it’s rare for it to be a one-time thing.
It’s common for SR22 insurance to be required if you’re convicted of a DUI and want to get your license and registration reinstated. A judge will probably issue the order, and it’s a way to ensure that anyone who has a track record of driving under the influence will be properly insured in case of an accident.
While it’s possible to get cheap SR22 insurance, your overall insurance costs might go up more than you expect.
If you now have a DUI on your record, your car insurance provider is likely to also consider you high risk and raise your premiums as a result. For example, in Texas, insurance rates typically increase by 75 percent after a DUI.
How Long Do I Need It?
In most states, you’ll have to carry your SR22 coverage for two to five years. For example, in Texas, you have to hold the policy for two years, while in Illinois the time is three years.
Any additional violations or charges can start the clock over on how long you need to have it. If you let the it lapse, your insurer notifies the state, which can result in your license being resuspended.
You should be notified by the state when your period is up. At that point, you need to ask your insurance company to remove the SR22 from your policy. This could result in your premiums going back down, but that isn’t a guarantee.
Find the Best SR22 Insurance
If the court has decreed you need to carry SR22 insurance, you need to start looking as quickly as possible to make sure you’re in compliance and get the clock ticking on how long you need to have it. Comparing rates from your current insurer and others can help you keep your SR22 insurance cost down.
Getting your SR22 insurance taken care of can seem a little overwhelming in the face of all the other issues that arise from a DUI conviction. Contact us to get SR22 insurance quotes today and find the best rates.