Say you received a DWI and now must carry an SR-22 for being a “high-risk driver.” But what does that mean, and how does it affect your car insurance?
High-risk means that you present risk not only to other drivers but to insurance companies. Insurance companies see you as more likely to file a claim, so they charge you higher premiums in order to account for the risk. A high-risk driver is anyone who has:
- Multiple tickets in a short span of time
- Been caught driving without car insurance
- Caused serious or multiple wrecks
Receiving one speeding ticket won’t make you a high-risk driver. High-risk drivers have typically committed multiple violations. DUIs and DWIs are the quickest way to find yourself labeled as a high-risk driver.
Can You Still Get Car Insurance as a High-Risk Driver?
The good news is that you can still find car insurance when you’re a high-risk driver. The bad news is that it’s a lot harder and a lot more expensive. Some insurance companies specialize in insuring high-risk drivers, which means their rates are typically cheaper than companies that only focus on offering insurance to standard drivers. A nonstandard driver is someone who is considered high-risk, including the elderly, new drivers, drivers with poor credit and drivers that own expensive, exotic vehicles.
High-risk car insurance is expensive. High-risk drivers can pay up to 69% higher premiums than standard drivers. To find affordable high-risk car insurance, there are steps you can take to lower your risk.
- Shop for insurance that specializes in high-risk and SR-22s
- Work to build credit
- Take defensive driving courses if your state offers them
- Pay off fines and tickets
What is an SR-22?
An SR-22 is proof of insurance which verifies that you carry the state-required amount of car insurance. This isn’t an insurance policy, but proof that you have an insurance policy. You must have both in order to drive legally if you’re considered a high-risk driver. Your state or court will notify you if you must carry an SR-22. This typically occurs after the traffic or legal violation.
Where Do I Get an SR-22?
Certain insurance companies offer SR-22s and will file them for you. This also means that any disruption or violation of your insurance coverage goes straight through your insurance company to notify the court or state that issued the SR-22.