While you may have heard of SR-22 insurance in the past, you probably never paid attention until you had legal problems. So what exactly is a SR-22 and will you need it in order to get back on the road? DUI lawyer Peter M. Liss explains.
What is SR-22 Insurance?
You cannot get a restricted license or any license returned unless you file form SR-22 with the DMV. If you call your insurance company after setting up a policy, the company will file it electronically for you.
While the name refers specifically to the form submitted to the DMV that shows you have insurance, SR-22 is often referred to in terms of insurance policies available for people who need the proof of insurance. Because the certificate is necessary for drivers who have had their license revoked, some people refer to policies that include SR-22 insurance certificates as “high risk insurance.” Not all companies offer such a service and those that do often charge higher premiums to those who need it.
Who Needs SR-22 Insurance?
Though drunk driving is the most common reason people need SR-22 insurance, other reasons include getting into an accident while uninsured, losing your license after the DMV declared you a negligent operator for obtaining too many points on your record, or being convicted of reckless driving. If you stop paying your premiums or cancel your insurance during the mandatory SR-22 period, the company will send the DMV a SR-26 and your license will be suspended again until you turn in another SR-22. If you aren’t sure how long you will need SR-22 insurance, your DUI attorney can let you know based on the specifics of your case, but most people need the documents for three years.
When You do Not Need to File an SR-22 Form
You do not need a SR-22 if you are not planning on driving, but in order to get your license after such a suspension, you will need to obtain the document. In order to get a restricted license before your official suspension is over, you will need to obtain SR-22 documents. Your DUI lawyer can advise you on how to get your license back in the most timely fashion after a criminal driving charge.
If you have any questions about SR-22 documents, insurance and your right to drive after a DUI, please contact Vista attorney Peter M. Liss at (760) 643-4050.
Creative Commons Image by Greg Matthews