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Dui car insurance sr22

Our California DUI attorneys assist clients in obtaining  SR22s and car insurance throughout the state, including Los   Angeles, the San Francisco  Bay Area, Orange  County, San   Bernardino, Riverside and Ventura.

A lot of mystery and confusion surrounds the SR22  requirement in connection with California DUI cases. In this article, we break  it down and explain everything.

Simply put, a California SR22 is a form (provided by your  car insurance company) that verifies you have met this state's requirement with  respect to auto liability insurance.  Upon issuance, your insurance company will forward a copy to the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV).

An SR22 must be obtained anytime you wish to reinstate your  license following a DMV suspension or revocation. Although they are most commonly associated  with DUI-related license suspensions, an SR22 may be necessary under a variety  of circumstances.

In this article, our  California DUI attorneys will address your most frequently asked questions  about California SR22 forms... and how they relate to driving under the  influence... by answering the following:

1. What is  an SR22? 2. Can an  SR22 Help get Me a
Restricted License? 3. How Do  I Obtain an SR22? 4. What  are the Costs Associated with
an SR22? 5. What  Happens to My SR22 if I Move? 6. How  Long Must I Maintain My
SR22 Status? 1. What is  a California  SR22?

An SR22 is a certificate of insurance. Your auto insurance company files it with the  California Department of Motor Vehicles in order to confirm that you meet the  state's minimum requirements for auto insurance liability coverage.

Once your California driver's license has been suspended or  revoked... either because you lost your DMV DUI hearing or  because you didn't request one,1 or because you got convicted of DUI in court... an SR22 is necessary to reinstate  your driving privilege. It is an  acceptable "proof" of liability car insurance for any DMV action that  requires you to provide proof of financial responsibility.

Some examples of situations where the California DMV may require  you to file an SR22 include (but are not limited to):

  • Reinstating your driving privilege following a DUI or wet-reckless2 suspension / revocation
  • Being involved in an accident when you were uninsured
  • Reinstating your driving privilege after the DMV suspended  / revoked it because it declared you a negligent operator (you may be declared a negligent operator if you obtain too many points on your  driving record within a specific timeframe)3

Any one of these events require you to keep an SR 22 on file  with the California  DMV ...generally for a period of three years.

If the DMV requires you to maintain a California SR22, your  policy must cover any cars that are registered in your name and/or all cars  that you routinely drive.

If, following your DUI conviction, you will no longer drive,  you don't need to file an SR22. If you  intend to drive, but do not own a car... or otherwise have regular and frequent  access to a family car, for example... you would apply for a non-owner's SR22  liability policy. A non-owner's policy  covers you anytime you are given permission to drive another person's car.

2. Can an  SR22 Help get Me a Restricted License?

Yes. When you are  convicted of a California DUI, you are generally placed on probation, which  means you must fulfill certain court-ordered obligations. DUI probation typically  includes a requirement that you attend and successfully complete a California  DUI school, and DUI  penalties include a driver's license suspension / revocation of between six  months and four years4.

Following your license suspension... and after waiting a  specific number of days... the DMV may issue you a restricted license. A restricted license allows you to drive  to/from work or school and to/from DUI school.  The DMV will typically issue a restricted license for a first DUI  offense if you:

  1. enroll in a California  DUI school,
  2. file a California SR22, and
  3. pay a $15 restriction fee and a $125 reissue fee.5

The DMV will typically issue a restricted license for a  second or subsequent DUI offense if you:

  1. enroll in DUI school,
  2. install an ignition interlock device (IID) in your car  and promise not to drive any car without an IID6,
  3. file a California SR22, and
  4. pay the same restriction and reissue fees.7

If you abide by these terms, the California DMV will most  likely issue you a restricted license for the duration of your drivers license  suspension period.

If, following your California DUI arrest, you are certain  that you are going to plead guilty, you may want to jump-start the SR22 process  by asking your insurance company to file your SR22 immediately following your  arrest. Initiating the process (rather  than waiting until the DMV takes action) may help you get your driving  privilege reinstated more quickly. (But always consult an experienced  California DUI attorney as to the best strategy for reinstating your license  quickly in you particular case.)

It should be noted that if you are convicted of Vehicle Code 23152a driving  under the influence, and it was proven that you refused to submit to  a chemical blood or breath test, you will be ineligible to obtain a  restricted license.8

3. How Do  I Obtain a California  SR22?

In order to obtain a California SR22, you must contact your car  insurance company. Unfortunately, once  you tell your company that you need an SR22, it alerts them to the fact that  something significant has happened.

The company will then access your DMV record to find out why  you need the form and will either (1) cancel your policy, or (2) issue you the  certificate. If you obtain an SR22 from  your current company, your rates will likely (though not necessarily) increase.  Generally, your insurance provides the SR22 by filing a form electronically  with the DMV.

Not all car insurance carriers provide SR22 coverage and, in  fact, many do not. If your company  cancels you... and you are therefore required to seek an SR22 elsewhere... you will  likely pay a high premium, as auto insurance companies will now look at you as a  "high risk" driver.

California law mandates  that all drivers must carry auto insurance.9 As a result, it offers a program that matches  you with a company that will insure you if you are unable to obtain an SR22 on  your own. You can learn more about the California Automobile Assigned Risk Plan (CAARP) by visiting http://aipso.com/ca/ or by calling 1-800-622-0954.

Fortunately, a DUI isn't the only factor that car insurance  companies consider before they make decisions about whether to raise your  rates. Most companies will also look at your  driving history, your age and driving experience, your marital status, and  where you live.

For more information on how a California DUI will affect  your auto insurance, see our related article on Top  8 Frequently Asked Questions about California DUIs and Car Insurance.

4. What  are the Costs Associated with a
California  SR22?

Like all other auto insurance policies, the costs associated  with a California SR22 vary by insurance company. Typically, you can expect to spend anywhere  from $300 to $800 for the policy, depending on your personal factors (such as  your driving history, age, etc.) that were mentioned above and on the specific  insurance company.

On top of that cost, you will also lose your good driver  discount (assuming you had one), as California law prohibits DUI offenders from  obtaining / retaining a good driver discount for ten years following the date  of your DUI violation.
As an SR22 client, you will pay a higher premium for the  minimum liability coverage required by California  law because you have been labeled a "high risk" driver.
In addition, some insurance companies charge you between $25-$50  or more to file your SR22. You must also  pay a $125 reissue fee to the DMV before it will reinstate your driving  privilege.10

5. What  Happens to My California  SR22 if I Move?

While a handful of states do not require you to file an SR22,  most do. Even so, every state's  requirements for filing it differ. This means your California SR22 is only  valid in this state.

In other words, if you move from California to another SR22 state, you must  obtain an SR22 in your new state. Once  you have that policy, your new insurance company will relay that information to  the California DMV so that the California DMV can then appropriately release  your SR22 in this state.

If you move into a state that doesn't require SR22 filing,  you will need to obtain a new policy, the limits of which are at least equal to  your California SR22 coverage.  Similarly, once you have that new coverage, California will appropriately release your  SR22.

It is critical to have your new policy in place before you cancel your California SR22. If you don't, your California DMV record will  reflect a lapse in coverage which could result in a new California license suspension.

6. How  Long Must I Maintain My California
SR22 Status?

In general, your SR22 status must be maintained for at least  three years following a DUI related license suspension. You do not need to refile each year. As long  as (1) your insurance company doesn't drop you after it issues your SR22, or  (2) you don't cancel the policy, it will remain on file with the DMV until is  it no longer necessary.

If you are dropped or cancel your policy, however, your  insurance company must report that information to the DMV. In that event, in order to avoid a new drivers  license suspension, you must immediately obtain an SR22 from another car  insurance company. You must maintain  uninterrupted coverage for the DMV ultimately to remove your SR22 status and  reinstate your license.11

Along these same lines, if you fail to make a payment, your  car insurance company may inform the DMV that you no longer have an SR22, which  will also trigger a new license suspension unless you re-file the SR22.

Call us for help Quidco tesco insurance car

If you or loved one is in need of help with SR22 requirements and you are looking to hire an attorney for representation, we invite you to contact us at Shouse Law Group. We can provide a free consultation in office or by phone. We have local offices in Los Angeles, the San Fernando Valley, Pasadena, Long Beach, Orange County, Ventura, San Bernardino, Rancho Cucamonga, Riverside, San Diego, Sacramento, Oakland, San Francisco, San Jose and throughout California.

For information about Nevada SR 22 insurance, go to our article on Nevada SR 22 insurance.

Legal  References:

1 DMV DUI hearings, also known as  administrative per se hearings, must be requested within 10 days of a DUI  arrest. The DMV DUI hearing allows you  the opportunity to contest your driver's license suspension / revocation that  would otherwise automatically be imposed in connection with your California DUI  arrest.

2 California Vehicle Code 23103 per  23103.5 VC is known as a "wet reckless" and is an offense that may be  negotiated for during a California DUI plea bargain.

3 Under California's negligent operator treatment  system, your license will be suspended or revoked if you accumulate 4 points within any 12 month period, 6 points  within any 24 month period, or 8 points within any 36 month period.

4 One of California's DUI penalties is actually  enforced through the DMV. The DMV  suspends your driver's license for six months for a first DUI offense, two  years for a second DUI offense, three years for a third DUI offense and four  years for a fourth or subsequent DUI offense under California Vehicle Code  13352 VC.

5California DMV  website - ("Generally, if you are over 21 and enroll in a DUI  program, file a California Insurance Proof Certificate (SR 22), pay the  restriction and reissue fees, DMV will issue you a restricted driver license  which allows you to drive to/from work and during the course of employment  (unless you hold a commercial driver license) and to/from a DUI program.  However, if you would be considered a "traffic safety" or "public safety risk" if  permitted to drive, the court may order DMV not to grant you a restricted  driver license. Other actions against you may also prohibit the issuance of a  restricted license.")

6 An ignition interlock device (IID) is a  mini-breathalyzer device that prevents the car from starting unless you provide  an alcohol-free breath sample.

7 See endnote 5, above - ("Second and subsequent DUI  convictions result in increased penalties, including a two-year suspension or a  revocation of up to four years. After you complete a prescribed period of your  suspension/ revocation and either enroll in, or complete a portion of, a DUI  program, you may obtain a restricted license to drive anywhere necessary if  you: [1] Install an IID on your vehicle. [2] Agree not to drive any vehicle  without an IID. [3] Agree to complete the prescribed DUI program. [4] File an  SR 22. [5] Pay the reissue and restriction fees.

8 Pursuant to California law, a refusal to submit to a  chemical blood or breath test disqualifies you from receiving a restricted  license. As a result, your suspension  following a California DUI refusal is what's known as a "hard" suspension.

9 California  Vehicle Codes 16000 - 16078 are known as the Compulsory Financial  Responsibility Act and require every California  driver to carry auto insurance.

10 California Vehicle Code 14905 -- Suspension pursuant to Vehicle Code 13353 or  13353.2 VC; additional fee. ("(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of this code, in  lieu of the fees in Section 14904 VC, before a driver's license may be issued,  reissued, or returned to a person after suspension or revocation of the  person's privilege to operate a motor vehicle pursuant to Vehicle Code  Section[s] 13353 or 13353.2, there shall be paid to the department a fee in an  amount of one hundred twenty-five dollars ($125) to pay the costs of the  administration of the administrative suspension and revocation programs for  persons who refuse or fail to complete chemical testing, as provided in Section  13353 VC, or who drive with an excessive amount of alcohol in their blood, as  provided in Section 13353.2 VC, any costs of the Department of the California  Highway Patrol related to the payment of compensation for overtime for  attending any administrative hearings pursuant to Article 3 (commencing with Vehicle  Code Section 14100) of Chapter 3 and Section 13382, and any reimbursement for  costs mandated by the state pursuant to subdivisions (f) and (g) of California  Vehicle Code Section 23612.

11New DUI Reportability  Requirements - ("What will  happen if my insurance policy is cancelled because of a DUI violation? If your insurance policy  is cancelled for any reason, you need to get new insurance right away, since it  is illegal to own or operate a vehicle without liability insurance in California. In addition to proof of insurance for  registration, if you are required to maintain a California Insurance Proof  Certificate (SR 22) for your driver license, you will need to have your new  insurance company file a new SR 22 with DMV immediately to avoid the suspension  of your driver license based on the cancellation of your insurance proof  certificate.")



What Is a Non Owner SR22 Insurance?

A Non Owner SR22 Insurance basically it’s an SR22 Insurance Filing for people with no car. A Non Owner insurance policy is made for individuals who don’t own a car, have a car titled in their own name, nor have a car available for regular use. Motorists who usually do not have a vehicle can certainly obtain insurance with the SR22 filing.

Non owner SR22 insurance can also be a type of insurance contract which a person that occasionally drives another individual’s vehicle purchases. The motorist will not actually own the vehicle, plus it really is a kind of insurance that is for unplanned or occasional driving of a vehicle registered to someone else. It is not a form of insurance that’ll be issued to anyone who owns a vehicle. In case the driver lives in a dwelling which they sometimes “borrow” the vehicle of another that lives in the home, it may also be purchased for such occasions. On the other hand, in the event the individuals are married man and wife, the coverage isn’t going to be issued.

A non owner car insurance policy does not need an SR22 attachment; you can buy a SR22 bond should you’d like to possess added insurance protection when driving a non-owned car. There is a non owner SR22 insurance policy generally composed with the minimum liability coverage needed by the state where the policyholder resides; nevertheless, higher coverage limits can be purchased to fit demands and your comfort level.

Value of my car for insuranceThere is a non-owner car insurance policy also known as an operator or named operator coverage. It functions as secondary insurance on any non vehicle that is owned the policyholder may occasionally drive. In other words, in the event a car is borrowed by you and have an accident, the automobile owner’s major insurance policy pays claims up to its coverage limitations, assuming you had the owner’s authorization to push the automobile. A non owners insurance policy becomes effective only if the vehicle owner’s primary insurance’s protection limitations are exhausted by it. This really is not an automated process – it has to be performed by calling your insurance broker and providing the vehicle advice. The premium will typically increase based on the year, make and model of the vehicle. It may be also obtained by you with collision coverage and full comprehensive.

A non owners insurance policy with or without an SR22 sanction is just not built to cover a teenager living at home and driving automobiles owned by means of a parent or other family member. Any teen having a legal driver’s license has to be added to the parent’s auto insurance policy. However , this always involves an important escalation in the parent’s insurance costs, and can’t be prevented.


Non Owner Car Insurance: 4 Types of

Even should you not possess a car, there are several situations where it is sensible to carry a non-owner car insurance policy. We’ll review below the situations that are most effective to possess motor insurance without owning a car. In addition, we are going to take a look at the coverage requirements of a non owner insurance plan as the requirements will be different from when you own your car. Ultimately we will reveal non owner vehicle insurance companies along with the measures you must require to get auto insurance without having a car.

1) Non Owner Car Insurance – SR22 Insurance

A great fit for a non-owners car insurance policy is for individuals who should fulfill with the monetary requirements of SR22 paperwork. People who’ve had their licensed revoked or suspended are frequently required to file an sr22 form in the state they reside and maintain automobile insurance. Since drivers will soon be without a car to get a period of time, purchasing a non-owners insurance policy would be the function as the most cost effective methods to keep auto insurance current.

2) Non-Owner automobile Insurance – Renting A Car

Paying for motor insurance from a rental-car business is just not quite cost effective, particularly if you rent cars often. A car rental company will exclusively be focused on the state minimum coverage being carried by you for liability and will offer you other coverage, such as collision damage waiver, to ensure their cars are completely protected. Additionally, when purchasing insurance from a rental business you have just one alternative, you have to go with the pricing they present for you. Investing in a non-owner car insurance policy for renting a car,  is an effective method to have coverage. This is since you can get the correct degree of coverage you’ll need in addition to shop around with different firms to get pricing which is going to be more alluring than the usual rental car company provides.

3) Non Owner Auto Insurance – Borrowing A Car

To cut back on your cost you might be in the position where you do not own an auto, but sometimes are in serious need of using an automobile. Perhaps you are able to borrow the car of the roommate or friend? Any damages when borrowing a vehicle, you might incur will typically be insured by the auto owner’s coverage. It really is advisable to check with all the car’s owner to make certain you are added on their coverage. Most car insurance firms will not give a non-owners insurance policy to get a car being used in precisely the same home. A superb fit for a non-owners automobile policy when borrowing a car is to add supplementary coverage to the existing protection the possessor already has. For example, if you are in an injury and damages are more in relation to the minimal coverage to the existing owner’s policy, a non-owner’s policy will kick in and provide additional protection.

4) Non Owners Insurance – Continuous Coverage

Another good use of a non-owners insurance is when you are without a car and be prepared to get a car as time goes on. Many states will permit in determining your pricing on car insurance, car insurance firms to make use of continuous auto insurance policy as a factor. In the event you’ll be without a car and ultimately will receive a brand new automobile, one of many initial questions you will be asked is for those who have coverage now. A non-owners car insurance plan will provide ongoing protection and certainly will assist keep your rates low for when you get a policy for your personal auto.


Full coverage car insurance cost state farmHow Much and Where can I move?

The price of having non-owners automobile insurance may be most affected by the dimension of indebtedness coverage your driving document, and also where you reside. As you are going to just get indebtedness coverage, your non-operator policy’s cost needs to be less than buying auto insurance to get a car you have. The easiest way to get the cheapest estimates would be to look around. Underneath is an overview of the measures without having an automobile to get auto insurance estimates.


Getting Automobile Insurance with No Car

1) Check Insurance is likely to Be Wanted

  • SR-22 Filing – if you’re with no car and require to keep fiscal obligation by submitting an SR-22 subsequently a low-possessors should be an excellent match
  • Car Leasing or Renting – If you often rent cars a non-owners coverage should be an excellent option
  • Vehicle Borrowing – if you’re borrowing a vehicle from someone in your family, their protection should insure you. This is advisable to always check with all the individual that you’re borrowing the vehicle to make sure you are covered by their protection. Additionally always check to find out what their protection amounts to be certain you are completely shielded.

2) when there is a few estimates now is the time for you to pick the best bargain that is most effective. Clearly, cost ought to impact your judgment and is not unimportant. In addition, it is advisable to decide on a firm that is famous. The final thing that you would like is in the event that you must submit a state to make use of a poor business with small assets

Insure car insurance cancellation policy3) the automobile insurance business can be contacted by you immediately. Either somebody a guide from a close friend or relative or you’ve got worked with. Some auto insurance companies do not provide non-owner car insurance therefore you might not get much info with this option. See our listing of non-owners companies below

a. The first is Discover Amount of protection – The beginning position needs to function as minimal number needed by the state. The most significant protection to get a Non-Owners insurance automobile plan will likely be indebtedness coverage. To decide on the minimal number another measure was summarized in by a realtor should not be unable to assist.
b. The next get in touch with an automobile insurance broker. There are two paths if you are looking for auto insurance with no car to move

4) alternative would be to function with the impartial auto insurance agent that has associations with auto insurance providers that are several. This may probably present the many choices and assist you to find lower pricing as a broker that is independent is going to have more understanding that businesses in your region provide offer and aggressive pricing for non owners insurance.


Non Owners Insurance Providers

Progressive, Geico, Farmers, USAA, State Farm and Nationwide are the best non owner car insurance companies at the moment. Contact them to check the last updates about their coverages for non owner car insurance, non owner sr22 insurance and general cheap sr22 insurance.


Cheap SR22 Insurance Information

You should remember every condition in America requires in a few sort car insurance. Perhaps not carrying insurance can lead to penalties or losing your driving freedom. The kind of coverage will be different in every condition, however you will find frequent coverage’s discovered in a non-owners car insurance. The protection that is most important is your household’s resources in the event of case as well as the liability protection, that will insure you. Yet another protection to think about is uninsured driver protection. Considering that the nationwide average of an uninsured driver is near to and 1-5% 25% in a few states, uninsured driver protection will safeguard you should you be within an accident with someone at problem perhaps not transporting auto insurance. The regions normally maybe not protected in a non-proprietors coverage are comprehensive reporting and collision in addition to rental car and towing compensation.

Morethan car insurance policyAn SR22 bond is a certification of insurance that demonstrates the section evidence of insurance for the long run, as needed by regulation. Sr22 is an automobile liability insurance which requires the insurer to certify coverage to the Department of cars, as well as Department of Motor Vehicles must be notified any moment by the insurer the plan is canceled, falls or terminated. You don’t have to be in possession of a car to get this type. In the event that an automobile is not owned by you, ask your insurer in regards to a non owner sr22 insurance.

An SR-22 insurance coverage is usually needed for reinstatement following a motorist rights revoked or to generate have already been suspended. Should you be needed before getting your driver’s license reinstated to demonstrate evidence of SR-22 insurance filing, you need to get yourself a duplicate of the SR22 insurance binder (dated in the last 1 month) or software for the (dated in the last 1 month). In the ending day of any annulment, you have to take this type of insurance contract for 36 months for many violations.

For DUI, DWI and Refusal prosecutions sr22 is needed for five (5) years in the end day on a primary violation, ten (10) years in the end day on another violation, and twenty (20) years in the end day on a next violation.
Here a video about how to get a cheap sr22 insurance and a Non Owners SR22 Insurance


You did something stupid and you got caught. Or someone you know did something stupid and got caught. Fortunately, if you’re reading this, the person involved is still alive and nobody has been injured. It’s time to start driving again (responsibly).

You might need a new car insurance provider since it’s possible that your current provider either dropped you or astronomically raised your rates to new highs. Despite what you’ve heard, you do have options. Some auto insurance companies don’t punish people as much as others when it comes to DUIs.

Your best option to get started is to get quotes from several car insurance companies quickly to see which ones will accept you.

Find the Best Car Insurance Rates

Enter your zip code below and be sure to click at least 2-3 companies to find the very best rate.

or call an insurance expert and compare quotes easily over the phone Click to Call 1-800-471-6053 to Get Free Quotes The call is FREE!

The Shotgun Approach: Why Get Multiple Quotes Works

Getting car insurance quotes from several companies is a good place to start because you’ll understand the range of the rates you’ll be working with. You can eliminate any extremely high cost providers and those that won’t accept you.

While a company like Progressive may be the cheapest in some areas, it’s not necessarily the case everywhere. There are local options that may suit you better, but the only way to find out is to look.

This shotgun approach of getting several quotes is the way to go unless you know of a company that gives breaks on rates to people with DUIs. You need to get started by getting your new driving profile out there to see what the rates will be.

If you weren’t dropped by your current provider, you could be better off staying, but I advise to try the quote tool below because it certainly can’t hurt.

The Targeted Approach: Pick a Company and Get One Quote

In order to figure out which of the best car insurance providers you can target, I went through the quote process for five of the highest rated insurance companies.

Progressive came out as the most affordable provider, given the profile for someone with a recent DUI. However, keep in mind that these results are only only based on one location and one profile.

Two of the companies (StateFarm and Liberty Mutual) would not provide a quote after entering in the DUI citation so they may not even cover you.

In order to accurately compare the quotes across all the providers, I had to standardize my information by creating a profile of a person.

Here’s the profile I used for each quote:

  • 28 years old
  • Single
  • Male
  • Living in Seattle
  • Driving a 2012 Ford Escape
  • Cited for driving under the influence in 2013

Here’s a list of each company and quote prices based on the above profile:

Progressive — $177/month
StateFarm — No quote provided
Liberty Mutual — No quote provided

These companies rank as some of the best nationally. While they’re a good starting point, you might find that a smaller or more local company will offer you the best rates. To find these companies, I recommend using the shotgun approach by getting a quote here.

Understanding Insurance After a DUI

Every state enforces strict laws against driving under the influence, but insurance companies evaluate your risk as a driver as they see fit. Your rates are based on a number of factors and having a DUI on your record is just one component.

Depending on the severity of your driving offense, your risk as a driver, and your social and economic demographics, insurers may raise your rates, require you to purchase “high risk” insurance, or cancel your coverage altogether. Keep in mind that these are subjective measures, and each insurer will interpret your driving record (and DUI) in slightly different ways. Some companies rank a DUI citation as less of a risk than an at-fault accident.

SR-22 Proof of Insurance

The most common element a DUI or DWI offender will encounter after their license and driving privileges have been reinstated is the SR-22 form. The idea of an SR-22 proof of insurance form is much simpler than some insurers would have you believe: It is simply a form that you or your insurer must file with your state’s department of motor vehicles (or department of licensing) to verify that you have valid insurance coverage. This is commonly required in most states following a DUI or DWI offense. It’s also needed for other offenses under which a driver’s license would be revoked or suspended, such as excessive speeding, a violent crash, or other serious moving violations.

An SR-22 proof of insurance form is often necessary for up to three years following a suspended license, and most states will require newly reinstated drivers to carry insurance or else surrender their driver’s license. If you cancel your coverage or switch insurers, your insurer is required to notify the state so that police officers can be on the lookout for you as a former DUI offender with canceled insurance coverage.

SR-22 isn’t some kind of “special” or “high-risk” insurance coverage. The same regulations and minimum requirements for insurance coverage apply to former DUI offenders as they do for any driver with a clean history. The only difference for a DUI offender is that they have a mark on their driving record.

DUI Rates and Risk

Most major insurers use similar formulas and market data to calculate a driver’s risk of causing a future accident. These companies calculate how much they need to charge for monthly premiums to insure each individual driver. Most major insurers will offer similar baseline rates to DUI offenders, but that will only be a starting point. From there, the other standard factors come into play when determining how much a driver will pay each month. As an example, a DUI offender with a poor credit score is going to pay more than a DUI offender with a great credit score.

Every insurer in the marketplace either denies coverage for former DUI offenders or charges higher rates. How high the rates are depends on the driver and the company. If a driver with a DUI also has excessive speeding tickets or another accident on their record, getting affordable insurance will be tough to find. Someone with only a DUI, and an otherwise clean record, can expect to find something that might be reasonable. (You can see from the quotes I received at the top of this post.)

Cancelled Coverage After a DUI

After a DUI, your insurer may decide to cancel your policy to avoid the risk of paying for your next accident. As in most employment contracts, the average insurance policy is written as a mutual, non-binding agreement, meaning that either party (you or your insurer) can terminate the contract and cancel the policy at any time, for any reason.

A DUI or high-speed crash is a reason many drivers find themselves with no choice but to look for a new insurer. If you had insurance coverage at the time of an accident, your policy covers any damages or injuries (including ongoing medical treatment), even if you cancel coverage at a later date.

If you’re dropped by your current insurance provider after a DUI, you can still get relatively affordable car insurance again from another company.

Getting the Best Rate After a DUI

Following a DUI, a driver’s rates will go down over time if they drive for a few years or more without any accidents, or if their lifestyle changes. Getting a new job, buying a house, moving to the suburbs, driving a minivan, or the simple act of getting older will lower your rates. If you keep a solid credit score, that will also help. Ultimately, to find the best car insurance rates, you have to shop around.

Just as in the courtroom, each case is judged differently.

A misdemeanor DUI offense at low speed when driving two blocks home from your local bar will obviously have a different affect on your rates than a violent crash at highway speed involving alcohol, drugs, or injuries. While some insurers may try to convince you that a single DUI offense puts you in the “high-risk” category, you should get a quote before giving in to high premiums right away.

90 Days Off the Road

Outside of a handful of states in the midwest, which mandate a 30-day license suspension for first-time DUI offenders, most states mandate a first-time DUI offender’s license be suspended for 90 days, and some states require a six-month or one-year suspension. For repeat offenders, most states will suspend a second- or third-time offender’s license from six months to several years.

No matter how you try to rationalize it, 90 days riding the bus, bumming rides from friends, or taking taxis will never sound appealing. One night sleeping on a couch, a floor, or taking a cab to a nearby motel could potentially save you $10,000. Driving home intoxicated just so you can sleep in your own bed will never be worth it. I’m not even taking into consideration the potential for fines, community service, probation, legal fees, and jail time.

Written by Mike Jelinek
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