Suspended Driver’s License? Here’s How To Save On An SR22

So you’ve had your driver’s license suspended and you’re wondering what to do next? It’s not an ideal situation to be in, but neither is it a hopeless one, because getting back on the road is always an option.

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Once the period of your license suspension has come to an end, you’ll be able to drive again when it is reinstated so long as you have an insurance policy filed alongside an SR22 form.

A typical SR22 package can cost around twice as much as a standard policy, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t room to make savings. Let’s look at what SR22 status means for your motoring future, and where you can cut costs in the wake of a suspended driver’s license.

SR22 insurance explained

SR22 isn’t a distinct type of insurance in its own right, but is actually the name of the form that’s used in most states to recognize that a driver who has previously been convicted of a motoring-related offense has got a minimum level of cover.

It’s essentially a way of guaranteeing that insurers are made aware of earlier convictions, and that drivers with a checkered history are properly insured to protect themselves as well as other road users.

While the SR22 form is deployed in the majority of US states, it’s not universally applicable, so check locally to see whether or not it is needed.

Also be aware that there will be a fee to pay to have the SR22 form processed, and that your insurer is responsible for sending this off. As such, it’s really just a case of making a current or new policy provider aware of your SR22 status, and letting them do the administrative legwork from that point on.

Finding the cheapest rates on your SR22

As mentioned, you can reduce the cost of insurance if you are required to register an SR22 form, and comparing packages from different providers is the top option for finding the best rates for SR22 insurance right now.

Using online tools it’s a cakewalk to weigh up packages from various insurers, and crucially you’ll be able to filter out firms that are obviously not really interested in taking on SR22 customers, compared with those that are.

This will become obvious from the way that policies are priced. If premiums are eye-wateringly high, it’s probably a sign that an insurer is largely unwilling to accommodate people who have previously had their driver’s license suspended.

On the other hand, some brands will work to deliver cost-conscious policies to SR22 customers, recognizing that this is not only a way to help get people back on their feet, but also to forge long-lasting relationships with customers that will pay dividends over the years to come.

Establishing the other factors at play

There’s no getting around the fact that SR22 insurance policies will hit your wallet harder than standard cover; that’s simply the reality of having a driving-related offense on your record.

However, even if you compare policies and find a provider with a competitive quote, that doesn’t mean you’ll be making optimal savings when you renew your cover. This is because your motoring history is only one of the factors which insurers use to come up with the prices they charge to customers.

Annoying as it may be, your credit score is relevant here. California is one of the few states that prevents insurers from taking this into account, but if you live elsewhere you’ll need to accept that if you have a low credit rating, car policies will cost you more.

Improving your credit score by building good credit, reducing your debt and paying on time is wise not only because of the potential to reduce car insurance costs in the future, but also to generally put your finances on a more stable path.

Your car is another aspect that matters. But don’t be fooled into thinking that a cheaper ride is going to be less of a money sink to insure. What often matters more is the type of vehicle and the power it can put down.

Insurers are smart when it comes to calculating risks, as you’d expect. They know that someone who drives a sensible family-focused wagon, even if it’s brand new and has a sizable price tag, will probably be safer behind the wheel than someone who drives a 10 year old sedan with a growling V8 under the hood.

Knowing this, you don’t need to be worried about whether you’ll be penalized for picking a brand new car over a second hand model. Instead, be concerned with the power and the practicality. 

You can use comparison tools to check up on relative insurance costs for different vehicles and make a decision based on this as well, if you don’t mind spending a little more time on the research part of the process.

Then there’s the fact of where you live. Insurance costs vary by state, and also by places within a state. If you’re happy where you are, this is irrelevant, but if you’re planning a move in the near future, it could influence your choice of new residence.

Lastly, you might think about the distance you drive each year as a way to save on insurance. The fewer miles you cover, the less your policy will cost in many cases. You’ll also save on fuel, although obviously if you need the car for commuting, then you might not have much leeway here.

The bottom line

A driving conviction and a suspended license will definitely be a speed bump you need to recover from, and there’s no point pretending that getting insured again afterwards is going to be cheap.

What you shouldn’t do is sink into despair and settle for a needlessly expensive policy because you think there’s nothing else out there, and no way to make savings. Hopefully we’ve shown that this isn’t the case and that you do have some power in this scenario.

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