Louisiana SR-22 insurance certificate is a document that proves a driver considered high-risk owns the minimum legal liability limits in the state. The SR-22 insurance policy increases auto insurance premiums by at least $1223 in Louisiana. That is a significant increase on standard rates. Additionally, drivers must pay a processing fee of $25 to the insurance company to submit the form to the state.
Louisiana law states that drivers must maintain SR-22 insurance for three years with any state's licensed insurance company. If, for any reason, your insurance lapses, your license will be automatically suspended. Your insurance agent will inform the state DMV that you have defaulted on your payments, and your term will be reset to zero.
Additionally, you will pay a second reinstatement fee and other SR-22 related charges.
It is a common misconception to refer to SR-22 insurance as a policy – it is simply a financial responsibility certificate that proves a driver posses the minimum liability coverage as mandated by law. If you wish to have your license restored, you must submit an SR-22 form with your local DMV to show that you have the necessary liability coverage.
Your auto insurer usually files the SR-22 form. Any lapse or cancellation of the policy will be reported to the state Department of Motor Vehicles, which will immediately revoke your driving privileges.
Louisiana has three types of SR-22 forms used in the state. The more popular ones are owner SR-22 insurance coverage that caters to registered car owners and the non-owner SR-22 policy that provides coverage to drivers that are not car owners.
Even if you don’t own a car, you still need auto insurance if your license has been rescinded or suspended. Non-owner SR-22 insurance policy is the perfect solution for such cases, and it provides coverage if you often borrow a friend or family member’s vehicle.
However, if the authorities find out you drive your car or borrow people your vehicle without getting the proper insurance, your license will be revoked. In such a scenario, you have no option but to maintain SR-22 insurance for a specific period.
The three SR-22 certificates used in Louisiana are:
- Owners certificate that offers minimum liability coverage to the driver of a vehicle.
- Operator’s certificate that provides auto insurance coverage for a driver who is not a vehicle owner
- Owner-operators certificate that covers a driver and any vehicle they drive.
Louisiana SR-22 insurance is a tad costly because it serves to protect other motorists if a collision happens. Louisiana legal liability limits are:
- $25,000 for property damage
- $30,000 for physical injury per accident
- $15,000 for physical injury per person
Although these are the legal liability limits for the state, it is recommended to have more. Ask your insurance agent to recommend a specific level of coverage that suits your financial position.
Purchasing Louisiana SR-22 insurance is quite expensive. This is not a direct impact of the SR-22 processing fee, which is less than $50, but due to the insurer's insurance cost to cover the high possibility of a payout claim.
Car insurance companies charge high-risk drivers more money based on the driving violation that warranted the SR-22 request. Your rate may depend on the regularity and severity of your convictions.
Your insurance company usually does the filing process. Your agent will submit your request to the Louisiana Department of Public Safety. Afterward, a processing fee will be requested, and this figure varies depending on the insurance company. After your form has been filed, your insurance agent will mail you the approved SR-22 certificate and a letter from the Department of Public Safety.
This letter will contain instructions on maintaining SR-22 and the stipulated citation of your term. The standard duration is three years. If you fail to make your monthly payment, your auto insurer will inform the DMV of your disobedience. The State may revoke your driving privileges until your license is reinstated.
For Drivers With Insurance
If you currently own regular auto insurance, it should be quite easy to purchase the SR-22 certificate. Call your auto insurer and request for an SR-22 policy to be filed with the Louisiana BMV on your behalf. If your request is declined, immediately start shopping for a new insurer.
For Drivers Without Insurance
When applying for a fresh SR-22 insurance policy, you may be charged extra by your insurance company as a way to cover for your high-risk driving status. Having an SR-22 request on your policy can often disqualify you from certain discounts and insurance options.
For Drivers That Don’t Own A Car
If you don't own a car, it isn't easy to get approval for an SR-22 request since you have to prove car insurance. Your best bet is to first purchase non-owner insurance before filing for SR-22 insurance. Non-owner auto insurance is significantly less expensive than standard coverage since it doesn't provide cover for the vehicle – only the driver.
Many offenses may cause the State to resist your SR-22 insurance before your driving privileges can be restored. If your license has been revoked for any of the offenses listed, or if you have been involved in these infractions, getting an SR-22 policy is crucial.
- Legal judgments
- Driving uninsured
- Causing an accident/at-fault collision
- Driving with a suspended driver’s license
- Child support or parental neglect cases
- DWI or DUI conviction
- Refusing to take a breathalyzer test issued by a law enforcement officer
- Reckless driving
- Gaining too many negative points on your record