In South Carolina, it is against the law to drive under the influence of alcohol. If you have a blood alcohol concentration above the state’s 0.08% legal limit when you climb into the driver’s seat, you may find yourself in the middle of a legal quagmire.
DUI convictions often have a variety of legal penalties and life consequences. One of these is the requirement to have SR-22 insurance coverage.
High-risk automobile insurance
If a judge or jury convicts you of a DUI offense, South Carolina officials are likely to treat you as a high-risk driver. Sharing its name with an insurance form number, SR-22 insurance provides additional assurance you can cover the costs of any accident you may cause. State law requires you to carry this enhanced coverage for three years following a DUI conviction.
No viable alternative
After a DUI conviction, you may decide never to drive again. That probably is not the case, though. Unfortunately, if you want to retain your driving privileges, there is likely no viable alternative to SR-22 insurance. That is, if you have a DUI conviction on your record, you need proof of SR-22 insurance both to register a vehicle and to renew your driver’s license.
A tough conversation
Obtaining SR-22 insurance is not always easy. In fact, your current insurance provider may not offer this type of coverage. Even if the company does, you are probably in for a tough conversation with your insurer. If your insurer agrees to extend SR-22 coverage, you can expect to pay higher premiums for it. On the other hand, your insurance provider may decide to drop you, forcing you to find a new insurance company.
Your insurance company is not hurting for cash. Therefore, rather than blindly accepting the SR-22 requirement and its higher premiums for the next three years, you likely want to mount an aggressive DUI defense. After all, if you can avoid a DUI conviction, you can also probably avoid the problems that often come with obtaining SR-22 insurance coverage.