There are a few different reasons why you may need SR-22 car insurance in Georgia. From license suspension to DUI convictions, we have listed nine scenarios where the state of Georgia requires SR-22 insurance below.
What Is SR-22 Car Insurance?
When a driver in Georgia is required to have SR-22 insurance, they must file an SR-22 certificate with the state. This certificate (officially known as a Certificate of Financial Responsibility) is proof that the driver is insured and will stay insured for a certain period.
Not every driver needs to do this, however. The state of Georgia will send notice to anyone who needs SR-22 insurance, and there are very specific circumstances where it’s required.
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9 Reasons You May Need SR-22 Car Insurance in Georgia
Most of the time, drivers must file an SR-22 certificate if they were penalized for a vehicle violation. The SR-22 guarantees the motorist will be financially responsible in the future. In addition, there are penalties for failing to have SR-22 insurance when it’s legally required.
Here are the main reasons you might need SR-22 car insurance if you’re a driver in Georgia.
1. License Suspension or Revocation
The most common reason for filing an SR-22 certificate in Georgia is to reinstate a driver’s license or other privileges. If you’ve had your driver’s license suspended or revoked, the Georgia DDS may require the SR-22 form to verify you’ve purchased car insurance, which you need to do before a license can be reinstated.
Auto insurance companies usually require drivers to provide a valid license before purchasing a policy, but they will make an exception if you’re buying coverage to obtain an SR-22 certificate and working towards reinstating a revoked license. You’ll usually have up to 30 days to provide proof of a valid license.
You also need to hold the SR-22 insurance for three years without interruption after a license suspension. If your auto insurance coverage lapses at any point, your insurance company must notify the State of Georgia. That would also mean the three-year period starts over again, and the state can re-suspend your license.
2. Driving Without a License or Insurance
If you are stopped for a traffic violation and cannot provide proof of insurance or a valid driver’s license, you may need to obtain an SR-22 certificate. The form is a way of ensuring the state you won’t continue driving without the required credentials.
3. DUI or DWI Conviction
You need SR-22 car insurance in Georgia if you’ve been convicted of DUI (driving under the influence), DWI (driving while intoxicated), or any serious moving violation. A drunk driving conviction also means your car insurance rates will rise, and some companies may cancel your policy altogether.
4. Causing a Car Accident While Uninsured
Being stopped without proof of insurance coverage is grounds enough for you to need SR-22 car insurance. So, being at fault for a car accident when you’re uninsured is even more severe.
5. Too Many Points on Your Driving Record
Points are added to your DMV driving record when you’re convicted of certain traffic violations. A driver’s license is suspended in Georgia if a driver receives 15 or more points within 24 months. If you receive too many points during a specific timeframe, your driver’s license will be suspended or revoked, and you will need SR-22 insurance.
6. Repeat Traffic Offenses or Tickets
If you have repeat offenses on your record or you get too many tickets without paying for them, you could get notified that you need an SR-22 certificate.
7. Being a High-Risk Driver
If you’re required to carry SR-22 car insurance, chances are you have been classified as a high-risk driver in Georgia. Unfortunately, this means insurance companies will see you the same way, and you’ll face higher insurance premium rates.
Only one DUI is enough for a driver to be considered high-risk and require SR-22 insurance. If you need SR-22 insurance because of high-risk status, compare several insurance quotes and make sure you purchase coverage from a company that will file an SR-22.
8. Being Involved in Child Support or Neglect Cases
Many reasons for needing SR-22 insurance stem from traffic-related violations, but there are a few other reasons someone might need to obtain this form. In Georgia, anyone who fails to meet their child support obligations can have their driver’s license suspended. If you fail to make child support payments, the state may suspend your driver’s license.
9. Applying for a Hardship License
A hardship license is sometimes issued when a driver’s regular license is suspended or revoked. A hardship license lets you drive in certain situations, which is usually to and from work. If you’re applying for a hardship license after a suspension, you may be required to have SR-22 insurance.
What to Do If You Need SR-22 Car Insurance
If you need SR-22 insurance, you will receive a notification from the courts or the Georgia DMV. However, if you’re unsure, you can contact your local DMV office and ask about SR-22 requirements.
Once you know you need the SR-22 form, contact your auto insurance company and ask your agent about SR-22 insurance. Some insurance companies don’t file SR-22 forms, so you’ll need to ensure your insurer can do this.
If your insurer does file SR-22 forms, they can file the documents with the appropriate state department. There is a fee, usually of $15-$25, for filing this form. If your current insurance carrier does not file SR-22 forms, you’ll need to find one that does.
We Get You Financial Recovery for Your Accident Damages
If you were injured because another driver violated a traffic law, John Foy & Associates can help you seek financial recovery for your damages. For a free consultation, call us at 404-400-4000 or fill out our online form to get started.