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How License Suspension Affects Car Insurance

License suspension is one of the most serious and problematic troubles you can encounter as a driver. There are many different reasons you might end up seeing your drivers license suspended or revoked. A suspended license has some consequences on your insurance, but many drivers do not understand proper insurance protocol for dealing with a suspended license on your policy. Gaining a basic understanding on this important topic can help anyone dealing with a license suspension to figure out what to do about their car insurance.

Reasons for License Suspension

As noted previously, there are multiple reasons why any driver might have his or her drivers license suspended. Most people are aware that either a driving under the influence (DUI) or driving while impaired (DWI) conviction may result in a suspension or revocation of your driving privileges for a certain period of time. But there are many other ways you can lose your license to drive.

Habitual recklessness or negligence on the roads is one common factor influencing states to suspend or revoke drivers licenses. If you are involved in a combination of too many accidents and moving violations in a short period of time, you might be subject to license suspension. In some states there are mandatory provisions over a certain threshold over a covered period of time for the guilty driver to have his or her license pulled.

Vehicular manslaughter conviction can also commonly lead to license suspension, even in cases when the driver had a previously clean record. The use of a vehicle in the commission of a felony or the violation of a previous license restriction (i.e. a teen on a graduated license driving after the curfew, or a driver who can only drive to and from work being caught driving on the weekend) will both likely lead to license suspension. Drag racing is another common reason for license suspension. Time and time again drivers who have been caught drag racing will say later that they were unaware of such steep consequences when they made the decision to take part in a race.

There are also some behaviors not directly tied to driving which can lead to your license being suspended. One area of such behaviors involves failure to attend to your responsibilities in the aftermath of a driving citation or conviction. For example, failure to pay late fees, penalties, and court costs associated with traffic tickets can cause you to lode your driving privileges. For this reason it is very important to take personal responsibility for your actions, no matter how minor they may seem to you.

Another type of behavior not directly tied to driving that can lead to the loss of your license has to do with how you treat your license itself, or what you do with it. For example, you can lose your license if it is found to have been altered in any way. You can also have your license suspended in some states for using someone else's license for any reason, or for letting someone else borrow yours. Use of a canceled or fraudulent license for any reason, as well as any other unlawful use of your license can result in its revocation, depending on the state you live in and the severity of the offense.

Consequences of a Suspended License

This is by no means an exhaustive listing of potential reasons for license suspension; it is only a sampling intended to demonstrate how many ways there really are to lose your driving privileges, and thus to show how important it is to know the law as it pertains to your license. If you have already experienced a license suspension or revocation, this need for knowledge of the law does not end. If anything, it becomes more important to know and understand your legal responsibilities, so that you can uphold them and improve your chances of earning back your driving privileges.

For example, many drivers who have lost their licenses for different reasons are required to file an SR-22 form with their home state. This form is not used in all states, but it is very common. An SR-22 form is a way in which states can work to ensure that drivers demonstrate financial responsibility following any number of situations. If you have to file an SR-22, it can be thought of a something of a probationary period on your way to getting your full driving privileges back. If you have been informed of the nee to file an SR-22, your state will let you know the specifics on how to complete the filing. In many cases, your insurer will do the filing for you.

If your license is suspended and you have been told to complete an SR-22 insurance form, or if you have lost your license but still own a vehicle, your obligation to carry adequate auto insurance coverage does not end just because your legal right to drive has been temporarily compromised. In fact, an SR-22 requires you to carry liability insurance for the duration of the filing, and the insurer you work with is required to notify the state if coverage has been interrupted for any reason.

Car Insurance and Suspended Drivers

If you have had your drivers license suspended and you are required to carry auto liability insurance, or if you still own a vehicle and want to find a more affordable way to insure it in spite of your licensure situation, you do have some options worth exploring. There are ways to fulfill your obligations as an SR-22 driver or to protect a car not being driven while your driving privileges are suspended. As a driver under suspension, you will obviously experience an increase in the cost of coverage. With that said, you should still work to save as much as you can off your premium by investigating your different options.

In all honesty, a high-risk auto insurance specialist might be your best bet for the time being. High-risk specialists may be more willing to try and dig up potential savings for customers will less than perfect records than would standard providers. If you have to file an SR-22 but you no longer own a vehicle at all, your most inexpensive option may be to get a non owners insurance policy. A non owners auto policy allows the policy holder to be personally covered in liability situations. In essence, it covers the driver rather than a car.

On the other hand, if you have a car but it is not being driven at all while your license is under suspension, you can investigate the possibility of having some portions of coverage suspended. For example, collision coverage may not be necessary, although even a car in storage should be covered for comprehensive if it is worth any money. If you are able to have some of the parts of your coverage suspended temporarily, you can save money while avoiding a lapse in coverage which can cost you later. But don't suspend coverage if someone else is driving your car at all. License suspension creates some complications for drivers to work through when it comes to your auto insurance coverage.

 

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