Texas DUI Defense Attorney Discusses the Basics of SR-22 Insurance

If your driver’s license has been suspended because of a DUI conviction, you may be in a tough situation. Perhaps you need to be able to drive to work because you do not have access to public transportation and you do not have access to reliable transportation to and from work with family, friends, or co-workers. You may be a parent who needs to be able to drive their children to and from school or other activities, or someone who helps an elderly relative with getting to and from appointments. Fortunately, Texas issues special driver’s licenses called occupational or essential need licenses.

Occupational or essential need licenses enable drivers whose licenses are suspended to operate non-commercial motor vehicles for work, school, and performing essential household duties. There are some requirements that a driver must meet before the Department of Public Safety will issue an occupational driver’s license to them. Many of these requirements are straightforward, but there is one that often causes a great deal of concern and confusion – the SR-22.

An SR-22 is an endorsement that can be attached to an automobile insurance policy. The endorsement creates an obligation for the insurer to continually monitor the status of that insurance policy, and to notify the Department of Public Safety immediately if the policy’s status changes. If you need to obtain an SR-22, it is important to know that not every insurer is willing to issue them.

Before you contact your insurer to ask whether they will issue one for you, it is important that you understand the possible implications of doing so. If you ask your insurer to issue you an SR-22, they may initially refuse to do so. That may not seem like a big deal, but they may even refuse to do so repeatedly if you ask them more than once. Or, they might say that they will issue one for you and then deliberately take a very long time to issue it. Sometimes, the insurer takes such a long time to issue an SR-22 that the driver’s automobile insurance policy gets cancelled because of their license suspension before the SR-22 form is even issued. You might also be denied the ability to renew your policy when it expires.

Since it is not always possible to get an SR-22 through your insurer, you may want to obtain an SR-22 from some other source. It can be done, but there is a risk that you could experience unwanted consequences if you do not go about trying to obtain it in the proper manner. The best thing to do is to get an SR-22 on a non-owner’s or operator’s policy and not on the owner’s policy for the vehicle that you drive. If you obtain an SR-22 on an owner’s policy from a secondary source, that new owner’s policy would cancel your regular policy because duplicate coverage is not permitted under Texas law.

An occupational or essential need driver’s license can help you to keep your job, take care of your home and family, or get to school. A Texas DUI Defense Attorney can help you pursue these licenses and build an aggressive DUI defense that is designed to obtain the best possible result under the circumstances. Call Attorney Jack Pettit today at 214-521-4567, to learn more.

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