People ask us all the time, what is an SR-22? And for most people, most good drivers, they never have to deal with this in their life until they get a DUI. And then suddenly they have to confront this issue of SR-22.
The SR-22 is a certificate that’s attached to an insurance policy that the DMV requires in order to give you your restricted license back. A lot of people get confused, because they call us and ask, I need and SR-22, and they just think it’s a simple piece of paper.
But an SR-22 is basically showing the DMV that you have the basic limited liability that California requires to operate a vehicle. Upon receiving a suspended license from the DMV, either for getting into an accident without insurance.
There are some reckless driving cases. And, of course, DUI. You have to have it on file for a three-year probation period. Your license will go back into suspension if you just lapses and don’t have an SR-22 on file.
And people call us all the time and say, I got arrested for DUI, you don’t have to inform them about a simple ticket you get. It’s their obligation to find out about your infractions.
How we do it is we file the SR-22 with a side supplement policy. So in essence, a person that receives a DUI now is going to have two insurance policies. They’re going to have the insurance policy that satisfies the DMV, that we attach the SR-22 to, and they’re going to have their policy with their current carrier. That’s going to cover their liabilities for their vehicle and their assets.
Most larger insurance companies like State Farm, Farmers, they have up to 100 million people in their book of business. So typically, they run about 15% to 20% of their book a year for renewals, because a motor vehicle report costs $1 to run. They can’t run these motor vehicle reports very frequently, because it costs the insurance companies a lot of money, and they’d rather spend it on advertising, not running motor vehicle reports.