Posted in Blog on January 16, 2020
Most people have heard of SR22 insurance but may not fully understand what it is. All drivers in the state of Georgia are required to carry insurance to legally operate on the roadways. However, for drivers who may have gotten into some trouble, they may be required to carry in additional insurance called SR22. To get technical, SR22 is not a type of insurance. SR22 is a form that your insurance company fills out and files to prove to the state of Georgia that you are adequately insured. Understanding why a person would need SR22, how much it costs, and how long a driver must maintain this insurance is important.
There are various reasons a person would be required to carry additional insurance in order to be legal on the roadway. This type of insurance is most commonly associated with those who have been convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Rightly so, those who have been convicted of DUI are going to be considered a higher risk in the eyes of the state government. During the latest reporting year in Georgia, there were 375 traffic fatalities caused by drivers who were operating with more than the legal limit of alcohol in their system. This means that more than 24% of all traffic fatalities in the state during that year were the result of impaired drivers.
However, impaired driving is not the only reason a person could be required to carry additional insurance. Additional reasons can include:
A person does not necessarily have to be convicted of a reckless driving offense in order for them to be required to carry SR22 insurance. A lapse in your traditional insurance often results in a license suspension through the DMV. Technically, this makes you a high-risk driver. In Georgia, anyone who does not meet their child support obligations risks having their driver’s license suspended. This suspension could trigger the need for SR22 insurance.
Once you know you will need SR22 insurance, you need to contact your insurance company and ask them about the policies available. Some insurance companies do not handle SR22 forms, so you may have to switch insurance carriers. There is usually a fee associated with having the insurance company file an SR22 form. This fee usually ranges from $15 to $25.
The real costs of SR22 insurance come in how much you pay for premiums each month. In general, your insurance rates will rise by an average of 89% when required to carry SR22. This equates to approximately $1,300 more a year for most people. This rate varies depending on which insurance company you use. You may be able to shop around with different insurance carriers to find a lower price.
The state of Georgia generally requires that drivers carry SR22 insurance for three years. This time frame could vary depending on the infraction that triggered the need for SR22 insurance in the first place. Generally, reckless driving and DUI’s will result in a person being required to carry SR22 for a longer period of time.
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