Proof of Insurance Following an OVI Conviction
After consulting with your St. Clairsville OVI lawyer throughout the court proceedings following an OVI charge, and completing your license suspension period, the Bureau of Motor Vehicles will require you to provide proof of insurance for the reinstatement of your driver’s license. In order to fulfill this requirement, you will need to request a Certificate of Financial Responsibility, also known as SR-22, from your insurance company. The SR-22 certificate serves as evidence that you possess the minimum liability coverage mandated by Ohio law. It is crucial to keep this proof of purchase along with your regular insurance card in your vehicle at all times, as you may be asked to present it if stopped by law enforcement. It is important to note that the SR-22 only covers your personal insurance needs and does not extend to other family members or individuals.
Regardless of whether you obtained your OVI in Ohio but reside in another state, or plan to move to another state after having your license reinstated, obtaining the SR-22 remains necessary if mandated. You must ensure that the insurance company specifically issues the SR-22 for Ohio. In many cases, insurance companies will electronically file the certificate, expediting the process and obtaining BMV approval within 72 hours.
What If I Don’t Own a Car? Do I Still Need an Sr-22?
The answer is yes. Even if you do not personally own a vehicle, but intend to regain your driver’s license and drive others’ vehicles, you are still required to obtain an SR-22. Possessing a valid driver’s license implies your intention to drive, regardless of vehicle ownership. If you plan to borrow or rent a car, you will need to obtain an SR-22 specifically crafted for individuals without vehicle ownership. While you may find that your family’s auto insurer can issue an SR-22, if that is not the case, you will need to contact an insurance agent to acquire one. It may be beneficial to obtain multiple quotes from different agents to explore more cost-effective options, especially if you do not plan to drive regularly due to the absence of a personal vehicle.
What Happens if I Don’t Get the SR-22?
If you fail to obtain an SR-22 certificate, your license will be suspended once again. The same applies if you cancel or let your policy lapse. Insurance companies are obligated to notify the BMV when SR-22 policies are no longer active.
Your license will likely remain suspended until you comply with the law by purchasing a policy and certificate. However, continuously allowing it to expire or canceling it may result in a longer license suspension.
There is a risk that your required SR-22 period will reset if you go without coverage for more than a few days. For instance, if you need it for three years and forget to renew it between years two and three, the first two years will be disregarded, and you’ll have to start from scratch. Instead of three years, you will now have to pay for five years of SR-22 certification.
Obtaining and maintaining a Certificate of Financial Responsibility is crucial when it is required. Your ability to travel freely hinges on your commitment to obtaining and keeping it. In most cases, an SR-22 is required for three years, although the duration may vary depending on your case. Despite the added expense of an OVI conviction, regaining your freedom is well worth the investment.
If you need assistance with an OVI charge, St. Clairsville Criminal Lawyer Group is here to help.
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