SR-22 Insurance in California
If you’re a California driver who’s had your driver’s license or vehicle registration suspended, you may be required to show proof of liability insurance to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). A California SR-22 is also necessary if you’ve been convicted of a serious traffic offense, such as a DUI.
What Is an SR-22?
An SR-22 is a document that certifies you have the appropriate liability insurance. It’s completed by your insurance company, but it’s the driver’s responsibility to file it with the DMV. The acronym “SR” stands for safety responsibility. Often referred to as SR-22 car insurance, it’s simply a form that verifies you’ve met your state’s insurance requirements.
When Is a California SR-22 Required?
When a driver has a suspended license or vehicle registration, the California DMV requires the SR-22 form to clear the offense. The following situations may cause you to lose your license:
- Too many points on your driving record
- Canceled auto insurance without obtaining new insurance
- As a result of a DUI conviction
- No proof of insurance for at least 45 days
- Being involved in an accident without insurance
- Non-payment of court-ordered child support payments
If you’ve received notification in the mail stating that your license or registration has been suspended, follow the steps outlined for reinstatement. Contact Matin Insurance Services (MIS)for assistance in obtaining the SR-22 insurance documentation you need to get back on the road.
What Information Is on the SR-22?
A California SR-22 confirms the date the driver obtained the insurance as well as the type of coverage. You’re required to document all of the vehicles you drive when completing your SR-22 form.
In addition to confirming the driver has met the minimum state liability limits, the form also provides the following information:
- Policy liability limits
- Driver information
- Vehicle registration number
- Confirmation of payment
- Policy expiration date
Once you present the required SR-22 documentation to the DMV, your suspension should be lifted provided all other conditions are satisfied. Contact one of Matin Insurance Services experts for a free online quote.
What Costs Accompany an SR-22?
While the costs vary depending on the insurance carrier, MIS partners with companies that are “highly rated by A.M. Best Company.” That being said, you should expect an increase in your insurance premiums. Whether you have an uninsured accident, multiple traffic violations, or a DUI, you are considered a high-risk driver, which leads to higher rates. Each unique circumstance is taken into consideration to determine the cost of insurance coverage.
You should also expect the following additional costs:
- Filing fee
- DMV reissue fee to reinstate your driver’s license
- Loss of the good driver discount (for a period of 10 years in the case of a DUI)
What Is the Time Period for a California SR-22?
Generally speaking, a CA SR-22 is required for three years for most violations. Depending on your record and the seriousness of the offense, it could be much less time. In more serious cases, such as reckless driving, you may be required to carry it for 10 years. You must maintain adequate insurance for the entire time for the SR-22 to be valid.
It’s not necessary to file each year; however, if your insurance is canceled for any reason, your license will be suspended again. You must show consistent uninterrupted coverage for the duration of your required SR-22 period for it to be valid.
What Does an SR-22 Cover?
A California driver is required to carry the following minimum liability limits:
- $15,000 bodily injury liability per person
- $30,000 bodily injury liability per accident
- $5,000 property damage liability per accident
If you carry only the minimum insurance, the above limits apply. In other words, the SR-22 says that you’re responsible for paying a maximum of $15,000 per person to cover bodily injury with a maximum of $30,000 per accident. You’re also covered for a maximum of $5,000 in property damage per accident.
The point of the SR-22 is to show financial responsibility in the event that you are involved in an accident. It’s possible that the minimum liability limits will not cover the full cost of the repair or replacement value of the vehicle(s) involved in an accident. If you’re at fault, you could be responsible for paying the balance.
Depending on the type of vehicle you drive or your assets, you may want to consider carrying over the above limits. It may be in your best interest to maintain a more comprehensive vehicle policy.
What Happens with My SR-22 if I Move out of California?
If you were issued an SR-22 in California, it is only valid in that state. While there are a few states that do not require filing, the majority do. You are required to complete all of the necessary documentation for the state to which you’re moving.
Once you fulfill the requirements for the new state, such as obtaining both appropriate liability insurance and an SR-22 form, notify California and request an SR-22 release. It’s critical that you do not have any lapse in coverage. Get your new insurance and SR-22 in place before canceling the old policy.
The MIS Difference
MIS partners with well-known and reputable insurers who have a solid history of financial security and dedication to customer satisfaction. We provide you with each company’s details so you can make the final, well-informed decision.
When you’re required to show SR-22 documentation to the DMV, MIS gets to work with partnering you with the right insurers. We assist you with completing your application as well as comparing rates and payment options.
If you’ve done preliminary online research our licensed agents are available to answer any questions. Our MIS agents are also highly knowledgeable when you require more detailed information. We are prepared to discuss the type of coverage and carrier that’s best for your CA SR-22 car insurance requirements.
Contact us by calling (877) 798-2768 or completing our online form. We’ll provide you with the information and options you need to regain your independence. Our insurance quotes are always free.