In the state of Florida, the cost of SR22 insurance is determined by a number of factors, for instance your age, marital status, driving record, place of residence, and the exact reason you have been designated for inclusion in the program. You will also be assessed a filing fee, and on top of that, you can expect the cost of your monthly premiums to take a serious increase. There is no question your insurance costs will rise significantly for as long as you’re in the program, which is likely to be a period of at least three years. Read below to find out more details about SR22 insurance and auto insurance in Tampa FL. What are your responsibilities as a part of that program?
What is SR22 Insurance?
SR22 insurance is not really an insurance policy at all, instead it’s a certificate which is attached to an existing insurance policy you have with a provider. It really amounts to a method for the state of Florida to track you as a motor vehicle driver, and to ensure that you are maintaining at least $10,000 worth of property coverage in your policy, as well as 10/20 bodily injury coverage.
These two clauses are the main reason that an SR22 is referred to as a Certificate of Financial Responsibility, because if you were involved in an accident and could not provide insurance coverage which covered damage costs, you would not have adequate financial responsibility for the situation. The state uses SR22 as a kind of monitoring system to keep track of various offenders, so it can be certain that there will be insurance coverage provided in the event that any of these individuals are involved in accidents.
If your SR22 insurance policy is canceled before the three years’ requirement is met, your driver’s license will end up being suspended until compliance has resumed and been completed. It will also do you no good to avoid driving for three years, because that will not satisfy the three years requirement of being in the SR22 program. As soon as you do start driving again, that would begin your three years requirement which would need to be fulfilled.
When is it Required?
SR22 insurance is required in the state of Florida if you have had a DUI, DWI, or any other major moving violation. You would also need SR22 insurance if you’ve been guilty of driving without a license or one which has been suspended, and also if you’ve been caught driving without a valid insurance policy in effect. If you’re involved in an at-fault accident with no valid insurance policy, this would be another reason why you would be thrown into the SR22 pool.
Anyone who acquires an excessive number of traffic tickets within a short period of time is also likely to be designated into the SR22 status. If your license is revoked or suspended for any reason, that would also carry an SR22 designation with it, and you would be obliged to fulfill all the requirements of the program before your license is reinstated.
You will always be informed by some governing body if you are being placed in the SR22 program. If the court has ordered you to file for an SR22 certificate, you will be notified right at the time of the court’s ruling. If the state of Florida has ordered you to participate in the SR22 program, you will receive a notification from the Department of Motor Vehicles stating the beginning date and ending date of your inclusion.
Once you know that you need an SR22, you’ll have to contact your insurance provider, assuming they deal with SR22 certificates, and let them know that you need to file for the program.
How Much Does it Cost?
It doesn’t cost that much to file for an SR22 in the state of Florida, and you would typically only be charged somewhere between $15 and $25 for the actual filing. There will be a much greater cost which you will have to pay in the way of monthly premiums, because anyone designated as an SR22 driver is likely to have to pay 50% more than normal on monthly premiums.
This is because SR22 status puts you into a high-risk pool, and that means your insurance company bears a greater risk that you might be in a second accident, or that you would continue to acquire traffic violations while driving. When you consider the fact that you will be paying 50% higher premiums for at least three years, you can easily see why SR22 insurance can end up being very costly for as long as you’re in that risk pool.
The news is even worse if you’re convicted of a major offense such as DUI or DWI, because that can raise your premiums even more, and the cost of your insurance could put a serious dent in your wallet or purse. There are a few things you can do to mitigate these high costs, for instance by taking the highest possible deductible, but that by itself would not significantly bring down the cost of your monthly premiums.
You can also look for any discounts which might be offered by insurance providers, and you might want to save some money by eliminating comprehensive coverage and collision coverage if you’re driving an older car. You might also reduce your liability limits when your vehicle is relatively older, because you might never reach those liability limits in actual practice.
You might save a few dollars more by not paying for insurance features that you won’t actually use, for instance towing coverage or loaner car coverage. Lastly, you can shop around and find the lowest possible rates from all those insurance providers which do handle SR22 insurance, to find the least expensive premium which will fit into your budget.
If you require an SR22 filing, as well as insurance to bundle with it, contact us at Affordable Car Insurance and will be glad to work with you as long as you are in the SR 22 pool. We can file for the SR 22 certificate on your behalf, and then after you fulfilled all requirements to the state of Florida, will be glad to have the SR 22 removed from your policy, so you can continue it without all the SR 22 obligations.