No one wants to get an SR-22 requirement. This certificate could increase your auto insurance risks and cost you more money.
But, the good news is that SR-22s are not permanent penalties. These certificates often serve as cautionary (though costly) warnings. They might cause some inconveniences while you have them, but they won't last forever.
Your SR-22 will likely impact your driving habits for a specific period of time. The more responsible you are while carrying the SR-22, the better the chances that you can duly get rid of the form. Let's take some time to learn a little more about how you can avoid further penalties.
What Is An SR-22
Many states require SR-22 filings for drivers who the authorities deem high-risk operators. SR-22s are forms that attach to your auto insurance policies. They verify for your state DMV that you have active car insurance.
Your state may require an SR-22 certificate because your driving record is speckled with offenses. The charges that lead to a penalty may vary, depending on where you live. However, common penalties that lead to SR-22s include:
- Driving without the right auto insurance
- Driving with a suspended license, expired registration or improper qualifications
- DUI/DWI charges
- Frequent accidents
- Multiple tickets in a short period of time
The most disconcerting aspect of an SR-22 is how it may affect a driver's auto insurance coverage. For example, certain insurers refuse to cover drivers who carry SR-22s. They might drop a driver because they view the SR-22 as indication that the driver is too risky to insure. This means that the driver may have to switch policies to meet SR-22 requirements.
Furthermore, insurers who do cover SR-22 drivers often cannot do so at standard rates. This means that drivers with SR-22s often have to pay more for their coverage.
The Length of an SR-22 Penalty
Each state has different driving record mandates and insurance requirements. Depending on where you live, SR-22s usually remain on your driving record for about two to three years.
When the SR-22 penalty ends, it is often easy for drivers to clear the certificate from their records. Usually, a driver only has to call their DMV or their insurance company to cancel the certificate. Afterwards, the driver often has more leeway to adjust their insurance coverage to meet their budgetary needs.
Extensions to SR-22 Penalties
SR-22 periods are not set in stone. There are exemptions that cause your form to remain active past the ordinary cutoff date.
Remember, these are driving penalties. Once you get an SR-22, your insurer and your state authorities will expect you not to offend again.
If you commit further driving offenses while your SR-22 is in place, this may trigger your policy to start over. Even if you re-offend one day before the form expires, you may face a renewed penalty for another couple of years.
Driving without the right insurance while under an SR-22 penalty can also extend your SR-22 period. Most states require all drivers to carry a minimum level of auto insurance coverage. If you don't carry this coverage, it makes you a high-risk driver. Since the SR-22 is essentially a verification of insurance coverage, it makes sense coverage often reboots an SR-22 period.
Drivers should do everything they can to keep their SR-22 policies from extending. They can do so by avoiding further offenses. They also should also always have adequate, active auto insurance.
Moving With an SR-22
We get it. A two or three year SR-22 period is a long time. Your life could change in that period. For instance, you might find move to a new home during the time that the SR-22 is in place. Moving requires updating a lot of your personal information, including your driving qualifications.
Moving doesn't free you from your SR-22 penalty. If you move within your state of residence, you must update your license, registration and insurance policy according to the state's guidelines. Speedy updates can help ensure that your qualifications and SR-22 penalty stay active. You often have a specified amount of days to update your information in order to avoid penalties.
Moving out of state often means you have to be extra cautious. The existing SR-22 may stay on your previous state's driving record. Plus, drivers likely have to update their insurance coverage in their new state. If a driver moves to a new state with an SR-22 in place, they should ensure their new policy adequately reflects the coverage requirements of the old state
Furthermore, some states do not require SR-22 filings. If you move from an SR-22 state to a non-SR-22 state, check with your DMV to see if you have to keep the existing SR-22 active. Consider working with an insurance agent who writes policies for both your new and old states of residence. This way you can ensure any outstanding SR-22 coverage needs are fully met.<
Dealing with an SR-22 requirement requires care and consideration. With the right attention, you can avoid extra penalties and ensure your certificate isn't extended.
Need SR-22 coverage? Call Auto Insurance Discounters at (866) 288-6545 right now. We can help you get a quick quote.