Get the Scoop Before You Sign Up – What is an SR-22 Insurance Bond?
Are you in the process of renewing your car insurance policy? Whether you’re a first-time driver or you just have to get basic liability coverage, you’ll need to first get up to speed on a certain legal requirement known as an SR-22 insurance bond. Wondering what an SR-22 bond is and why you need one? Read on to get the scoop before you sign up for car insurance.
An SR-22 insurance bond, also known as an SR-22 filing, is a specific type of financial responsibility certificate usually required by state motor vehicle departments. It must be filed by a car insurance company and issued by a state-licensed insurance company that certifies that an individual has car insurance with the minimum liability limits required by law. It is not actually an insurance policy itself, but rather serves as proof that you, as a motor vehicle owner, are carrying the legally-mandated minimum amounts of liability coverage.
In most cases, an SR-22 insurance bond is needed when a motor vehicle owner has had their license suspended or revoked due an incident involving their vehicle such as getting several DUIs, or owing too many unpaid fines. It is also commonly required when a driver has been involved in an at-fault accident without having had adequate liability coverage in place. Once the required SR-22 form is filed with the state and the individual has fulfilled all of their suspension or licence reinstatement requirements, the bond is typically valid for three consecutive years.
The first, and most important, step in obtaining an SR-22 bond is to contact your current car insurance provider to confirm if they can provide you with an SR-22 filing. Not all insurers offer this service, so you may need to shop around for coverage that includes this. Additionally, you’ll need to know what type of information you need to provide in order to get the filing issued correctly. For instance, your insurer may need a copy of a valid driver’s licence, evidence of prior insurance coverage, and other important details.
Once you’ve contacted your insurer to obtain an SR-22 filing, there are a few things you can do to make sure that the bond stays in place. First and foremost, make sure that you remain properly insured by avoiding any kind of gap in coverage. On top of that, don’t forget to update your insurer if you make any changes that may affect your coverage, such as a move to a new state or a change in car registration. Finally, pay all your premiums on time to keep your coverage in good standing.
Now that you have a better understanding of what an SR-22 insurance bond is and why you may need one, here are four more sections to help you get a full picture of what having an SR-22 entails.
Section 1: Additional Guidelines and Regulations
Before signing on the dotted line for an SR-22 filing, be sure to double-check the guidelines and regulations of your particular state. Depending on where you live, there may be specific rules regarding the types of coverages that must be included in your SR-22 contract and the minimum amount of liability protection required. Additionally, some states may place restrictions, such as not allowing motorists to cancel their SR-22 policy before it expires. Knowing what the rules are in your region can help avoid future complications.
Section 2: SR-22 Insurance Cost
One of the most common questions that come up when it comes to SR-22 filings is, How much does this coverage cost? Unfortunately, there isnt one definitive answer to that question. The cost of SR-22 insurance depends on a variety of factors, such as the type of coverage you need, your driving record, and even your ZIP code. Generally, you can expect to pay between 5% and 20% more for SR-22 insurance compared to standard liability coverage.
Section 3: When You Don’t Need An SR-22
Not every motorist is required to have an SR-22 filing. In fact, some states do not even recognize SR-22 documents. Before you commit to an SR-22, make sure you understand which situations require one and which dont. If you have been informed that you need an SR-22 but don’t feel like you are required to get one, then its best to consult with your car insurance provider or a qualified attorney to confirm that you dont need one.
Section 4: Understanding the Consequences
If you are required to have an SR-22, its imperative that you understand the consequences should you fail to meet the requirements for this type of coverage. Not only is the SR-22 a renewable contract, it can also be canceled for any reason. If this happens, the insurance company is required to inform the DMV that your coverage has been dropped. This can lead to your license or driving privileges being revoked until you can provide proof of new car insurance that meets the SR-22 filing requirements. So, be sure to always make your payments on time and notify your insurer if you make changes to your policy.