Like several other states, Virginia also has specific insurance rules that are unique to the state. A DUI conviction in Virginia may result in prison time, hefty fines, and the loss of your driving privileges. Even after serving time and paying thousands of dollars, you can still face financial consequences in the years ahead, especially when it comes to paying for Virginia car insurance.
SR-22 and FR-44 insurance requirements for DUI offenses in Virginia
This is true in most states – convicted DUI offenders are subject to much stricter rules s than other drivers. In Virginia, drivers convicted of serious traffic violations may be court-ordered to furnish proof of insurability (i.e.- SR-22) or proof of financial responsibility (i.e.- FR-44). This is usually based on the circumstances of their arrests. Neither SR-22 nor FR-44 is actually insurance. It is, in fact, a certificate that you have the required insurance coverages to obtain insurance. FR-44 differs from SR-22 in that it is used only in Virginia and Florida, and the liability limits typically exceed the state’s minimum. In Virginia, the minimum amount for auto liability insurance is $25,000 per person, $50,000 per accident for bodily injury, and $20,000 per accident for property damage. This means that an FR-44 in Virginia would require you to carry twice these restrictions.
Who needs SR-22 car insurance in Virginia?
The acronym SR-22 stands for Safety Responsibility, and it is a particular document that your insurer shares with the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to check the validity of your coverage. The SR-22 is not an insurance policy; rather, it is a document that ensures your auto insurance policy is active. The SR-22 certificate is typically needed following minor driving offense convictions, such as:
- Suspension for serious driving violations unrelated to DUI
- Driving an uninsured car while your license is suspended
- No proof of insurance
- Insurance fraud
- A conviction for manslaughter as a consequence of vehicle operation
- Excessive speeding tickets
- Unsatisfied verdicts
Who needs FR-44 car insurance in Virginia?
An FR-44 filing, similar to an SR-22, is required of Virginia drivers as proof of insurance coverage. The main difference between the two is that an FR-44 is needed after a conviction for serious drug and alcohol-related offenses. The following offenses, according to the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles, necessitate the filing of an FR-44 form with the state:
- Failure to comply with certain federal or state laws
- Failure to obey the local driving laws
- Driving after a conviction that resulted in the loss of your driver’s license
- Driving under the influence of narcotics or intoxicants (DUI/DWI) is a serious offense.
- Maiming under the influence
How much do I have to pay for an FR-44 in Virginia?
The filing fee for an FR-44 is usually between $15 and $25, but that isn’t the only cost you’ll face. Your Virginia car insurance costs could rise significantly since
- Insurers deem you a riskier driver after a DUI and charge you higher premiums.
- You’ll have to buy more than the minimum required limits for most drivers in your state if you buy an FR-44. If you previously had minimum coverage, raising the limits would increase the cost.
- You will also be forced to pay for at least six months of coverage upfront.
However, not all Virginia car insurance companies can charge you the same amount. When insurers set their rates, they take into account the driving record and other variables in various ways. That means the cheapest company for you before your FR-44 requirement may no longer be the cheapest post your DUI conviction.
How long must you carry an FR-44 in Virginia?
An FR-44 requirement typically lasts for three years. This begins on the day your license was revoked, and you must retain continuous insurance coverage throughout. A delay in coverage could result in your license being suspended once more.
When your FR-44 or SR-22 requirement is over, it’s would be best to start looking for fresh Virginia car insurance quotes. If you haven’t committed any violations in this duration, you should be able to find even reasonably priced Virginia car insurance quotes. You can check out the Way.com app or website for quick and cheap Virginia car insurance quotes.
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