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You may be required to prove you’ve bought a certain amount of car insurance if you’ve been convicted of a serious driving violation in Florida. Your conviction for driving under the influence, getting multiple speeding tickets in a row or being caught driving without car insurance can result in your insurer needing to file an FR-44 or SR-22 form on your behalf. These forms prove you carry the proper amount of car insurance required to drive legally in Florida.
An FR-44 or SR-22 requirement can be a blow to your wallet because car insurance after a serious violation isn’t cheap. But shopping around for a new carrier, seeking discounts and other steps could help you find the most affordable policy possible.
Here’s what you need to know about FR-44s and SR-22s in Florida.
FR-44 insurance in Florida
You may hear the terms "FR-44 insurance" or "DUI insurance," but these are not a type of coverage. An FR-44 is a form your auto insurer files with the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles to prove you bought the required amount of liability coverage after a serious conviction.
If you’re convicted of a DUI or DWI in Florida, you’ll need an FR-44 to reinstate your license and prove you’ve bought enough car insurance. If you don’t get an FR-44, you could lose your driving privileges.
Some other reasons you might be required to have an FR-44 in Florida include:
Driving without car insurance.
Driving with a suspended or revoked license.
Having multiple traffic violations.
Causing a crash that injures others.
In addition to Florida’s minimum requirement of $10,000 of personal injury protection, or PIP, drivers with an FR-44 requirement must buy liability insurance with these minimum limits, sometimes abbreviated as 100/300/50:
Although these liability coverage amounts are typical for many standard auto insurance policies, they are much higher than Florida’s minimum requirements of $10,000 for property damage liability per accident and $10,000 for personal injury protection.
The insurance required by an FR-44 form won’t pay for your injuries or to fix your car after a wreck. Liability insurance pays only other people’s expenses if you cause an accident that results in an injury or damaged property.
SR-22 insurance in Florida
Similar to an FR-44, the term “SR-22 insurance” might be used, but it’s not a type of insurance. An SR-22 form, or certificate of financial responsibility, proves you’ve bought the correct amount of car insurance required in Florida.
An SR-22 is typically required to reinstate your license if it’s suspended for offenses like:
Being caught driving without auto insurance.
Getting too many traffic violations or repeat offenses.
Not paying court-ordered child support.
If you’re required to have an SR-22 form, you’ll need to carry at least:
$10,000 of bodily injury coverage per person.
$20,000 of bodily injury coverage per accident.
$10,000 of property damage coverage per accident.
$10,000 of personal injury protection, or PIP.
The difference between an FR-44 and SR-22
While an FR-44 and SR-22 prove you have the required amount of car insurance needed to legally drive, the key difference between them is:
An FR-44 proves you’ve bought the higher liability amounts (100/300/50) Florida requires after a DUI or DWI conviction.
An SR-22 shows you’ve bought liability insurance in limits of at least 10/20/10.
How much an FR-44 and SR-22 cost
The fee to file an FR-44 is typically $15 to $25, while an SR-22 is about $25. But a filing fee isn’t the only expense you’ll face. Your car insurance costs could change dramatically because:
After a DUI or other violations, insurers consider you a riskier driver and charge higher rates.
With an FR-44, you’ll have to buy more than the minimum required limits for most drivers in Florida. If you had minimum coverage before, increasing the limits will raise your premium.
You may be required to pay upfront for at least six months of coverage.
You’ll need to pay an insurance reinstatement fee if you have a DUI conviction, which can range from $150 to $500.
Not every insurance company will charge you the same price. When insurers set their rates, they weigh your driving record and other factors differently. That means the company that was cheapest for you before your FR-44 or SR-22 requirement may not have the lowest rates for you now.
How to get an FR-44 or SR-22
Your insurer will need to file an FR-44 or SR-22 form on your behalf. These forms are your insurance company’s guarantee to Florida that you’ve bought the required level of coverage. You can't file either of these forms on your own.
Not every insurance company is willing to file an FR-44 or SR-22 form because they think it makes you too risky a driver to cover. If your insurer won’t file one for you, you’ll need to find a company that can.
How long you must carry an FR-44 or SR-22
An FR-44 or SR-22 requirement typically lasts three years, starting on the day your license is suspended. You must maintain continuous insurance coverage during the entire period. A lapse in coverage could mean having your license suspended again.
When your requirement ends, it’s time to shop around for insurance quotes. If you’ve remained violation-free, you'll likely be able to find much lower rates. NerdWallet’s car insurance comparison tool can help.
FR-44 or SR-22 insurance without a vehicle
You will be required to get car insurance with an FR-44 or SR-22 filing even if you don’t own a car, which means buying a non-owner car insurance policy. If you borrow a vehicle and get into an accident, this policy will provide the liability coverage required by an FR-44 or SR-22 to pay for injuries or damages you cause.
To buy a non-owner policy, you’ll likely need to call several insurance agents or companies to compare quotes — you typically can’t get a non-owner policy quote online.
How to find affordable car insurance with an FR-44 or SR-22
Although a spotty driving history typically results in paying more for car insurance, it doesn’t mean you can’t find a fairly priced policy. Here are some tips for finding cheap car insurance.
Shop around to compare car insurance quotes from multiple companies that insure high-risk drivers and go with the cheapest rate.
Drive less if possible. Frequent driving means a greater risk of getting into an accident, which means you’ll likely pay more for insurance. Consider carpooling, riding a bike or taking public transportation to decrease your mileage and possibly lower your insurance rate.
Look for discounts. While car insurance discounts vary by company, you may save money if you bundle your car insurance with a home or renters policy, buy your insurance online or sign up to get your bill through email.
Drop collision and comprehensive coverage. If you’re driving an old car, it may not make sense to keep paying for collision and comprehensive coverage, which pay only for damage to your car up to its current cash value.
Increase your deductible. A higher comprehensive or collision insurance deductible will reduce your rate, so compare quotes with different deductibles to find the cheapest option. You’ll need to pay out of pocket, up to your deductible limit, for claims you file. This won’t be an option if you have only liability and PIP coverage now.
Improve your credit. Most states allow auto insurers to use a driver’s credit history to price rates. While it’s not a quick fix, you could lower your rate over the long term if you work on rebuilding your credit by making bill payments on time and using less than 10% of your credit card limits.