How Much Does an SR22 Raise Your Rates?
Among other repercussions, certain driving violations can lead a court to issuing you an SR22 requirement. An SR22 is a form that states you carry the amount of insurance as required by your state. This is often required when a driver is caught operating a vehicle without insurance. Unfortunately, you may also face a lot of issues when it comes to purchasing car insurance after an SR22, including higher rates.
Is an SR22 Insurance?
An SR22 itself is not insurance. Instead, it is a form that states you carry insurance. This is not a replacement for insurance or an insurance statement but acts as an additional requirement. The term “SR22 insurance” simply refers to car insurance a driver may have while also carrying an SR22.
The amount of insurance you must carry varies per state. In Georgia, for example, all drivers must carry at least:
$25,000 in bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 in bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 in property damage liability
If you drive without these limits, you could face fines, jail time and SR22 requirements
That being said, since an SR22 is not insurance itself, an SR22 does not actually affect the cost of your car insurance. Instead, your rates will be influenced by the incident that caused the SR22 requirement.
For example, if you cause an accident while driving uninsured and are later issued an SR22, you will see a spike in your car insurance rates due to the accident, not the SR22 form.
How Long Does an SR22 Last?
Depending on the situation, court and your location, your SR22 requirement can vary. Most drivers must carry an SR22 for three to five years after being issued one. This does not mean that the affect on your rates will disappear, however.
Different violations may last on your driving record for varying periods of time. As long as a violation is on your record, your car insurance rates will still be affected. For example, a single at fault accident may remain on your record for about three years while a DUI could last up to 10 years on your record. Even if an SR22 requirement goes away, your rates may still be affected by whatever caused the requirement.
This also means that how much your car insurance rates go up depend on the accident or violation itself.
For simply driving without insurance. Georgia drivers could face a 27% increase in their car insurance premiums, as well as additional fines and other legal expenses. The change could increase if the incident involves:
An at fault accident
If you are involved in or cause an accident while driving uninsured, the repercussions are likely to be more than if you were simply pulled over for a common driving violation or traffic stop. An incident involving a DUI is likely to raise your rates the most by 80% or more.
Can You Still Get Car Insurance with an SR22?
Although it can be difficult and expensive, you can still get car insurance if you have an SR22 requirement. It is important to consider several insurers and compare quotes. Some insurers may deny drivers who carry SR22s as they present more risk of insuring, but other insurance provides specialize in high risk drivers. It is important to find the right insurer, however, as some insurance providers will hide the raise in premiums in other areas of your costs.
It may be even more difficult to find coverage if you let your car insurance under an SR22 laps. Since an SR22 requires you to carry minimum car insurance, dropping this insurance will notify your DMV and could result in further legal repercussions. An insurance provider may also cancel your policy or refuse to cover you again if you have a lapse in coverage under an SR22.
Keep in mind that an SR22 will only require you to carry as much insurance as is required by your state. It does not require you to carry full coverage insurance, although full coverage is often recommended for most drivers. Full coverage refers to the highest amount of insurance you can place on a single vehicle. While liability will only cover damages and injuries you cause to others, a full coverage auto insurance policy also covers damages to your vehicle as well as injuries you or your passengers may suffer after an accident.
If you have any questions about your SR22 or insurance rates, be sure to speak with your insurance agent.