Insurance companies consider some people to be "high risk" drivers. These drivers can present a greater liability to insurers due to their driving record, the type of cars they drive, even credit history. The insurance company could see them as more expensive to insure.
You might be considered a high risk driver if you have:
- Had one or more auto accidents
- Received multiple speeding tickets or other traffic citations
- Been convicted for Driving Under the Influence (DUI) or Driving While Intoxicated (DWI)
- Just recently received your driver’s license
- Been required by your state to file an SR-22
- A below average credit history
- A particularly specialized or high-value car
What is SR-22?
The most common reasons that an SR-22 is required, are for drivers being caught driving without insurance and driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI/DWI). Insurance purchased with an SR-22 form is considered high risk by the insurance companies and costs more than regular car insurance. Courts or states will require an SR-22 for individuals who have had severe driving-related violations. Not all insurance companies offer SR-22s, so if you need an SR-22, look no further, S.E. Benchmark Agency is here to help you!
Drivers are usually required to carry SR-22 insurance for 3 years. In that time, continuous coverage must be maintained. If there is an insurance lapse or cancellation, your car insurance company is legally obligated to notify the DMV and your license will be suspended. To have an SR-22 removed, you have to confirm with your court documents and with the state then the only step left is to call your insurance agent and inform them that the SR-22 is no longer needed. At this time it will be removed.
What is FR-44?
If you’re convicted of a DUI or DWI in Florida, you might be required to file an FR-44 to legally get back behind the wheel. Similar to an SR-22, this certificate of financial responsibility is required after a driving conviction before you can legally drive in your state. Unlike a more general SR-22, an FR-44 is specific to DUI or DWI convictions, but you can find an insurer willing to help you file for FR-44 insurance and we can help!
If you’ve gotten into trouble behind the wheel in Florida, you could be required by state law to file an FR-44. Some of the convictions that might require an FR-44 include:
- Causing injury or death of another person with your vehicle.
- Driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- Driving while your driver’s license is forfeited for a conviction.
- Violating the provisions of any federal, state or local law your state considers important.
What's The Difference Between FR-44 and SR-22?
The simple answer is that FR-44 is required if your violation is DUI related in Florida. SR-22 is for everything else.
Currently, there are only two states that require FR-44 insurance filings, Florida and Virginia. The FR-44 is a proof of insurance certificate that requires the driver to have higher liability limits on the auto insurance policy due to a DUI. Driving under the influence in one of these states will result in much higher car insurance premiums and a three year period of filing an FR-44 form. The cost of the filing is only $25-$50 but having the DUI on your driving record will cause the premiums to increase dramatically.
Tips For Being A Better Driver:
So, you've made a few poor choices out on the road, but that was then, and this is now. Every state mandates a length of time that a driving penalty will stay on your record, but your insurance company may be able to suggest ways for you to reduce the points on your driving record.
Some high risk insurance companies reward drivers for attending traffic safety or defensive driving courses. Taking positive steps to clean up your driving record can help you get affordable auto insurance and fall into the category of a "lower" risk driver. You can also:
- Use defensive driving techniques to help prevent accidents.
- Be mindful about following all traffic and parking laws.
- Drive a car with more advanced safety features.
Happy Driving and Be Safe!