The FR-44 is similar to the SR-22 financial responsibility certificate that you must file with the state after certain convictions -- though typically the FR-44 is required after DUI convictions and has higher limits than the SR-22.
The FR-44 is used currently in only the states of Virginia and Florida.
In Virginia, the state's Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) says that the FR-44 certification is required on or after January 1, 2008 for the following convictions:
- Maiming while under the influence
- Driving while under the influence of intoxicants or drugs
- Driving while the driver's license has been forfeited for a conviction, or finding of not innocent in the case of a juvenile
- Violation of the provisions of any federal law or law of any other state or any valid local ordinance similar to the above
FR-44 liability insurance coverage limits are double the Virginia SR-22 insurance coverage limits and are set at 50/100/40 for bodily injury liability and property damage liability. These numbers stand for:
- Bodily injury/death of one person $50,000
- Bodily injury/death of two or more persons $100,000
- Property damage $40,000
The FR-44 double state minimum coverage requirements apply to motorists convicted of the above violations on or after January 1, 2008, as well as customers previously convicted of these violations that are required to file an SR-22 certification beyond December 31, 2008.
The financial responsibility form FR-44 serves as evidence to DMV that above the coverages were purchased by the required driver. Individuals are responsible for purchasing the required insurance coverage and having their insurance company file the FR-44 form with DMV. If DMV doesn't receive the FR-44 when the person's new policy is issued, or when the current policy is renewed, the DMV states they will suspend the person's privileges to:
- Register motor vehicles in Virginia
- Obtain decals in Virginia.
In Florida, the FR-44 became required in February 2008. Those convicted of a DUI in Florida after October 1, 2007 were allowed to keep an SR-22 with limits of 10/20/10 until February 1, 2008. Effective February 2, 2008, drivers in Florida with a DUI were required to up their liability limits.
The Florida FR-44 has higher liability limits requirements in the amount of 100/300/50, again the first two numbers (100/300) the per person and per accident maximum amount for bodily injury liability and the third number (50) standing for the maximum for property damage liability.
A driver must have these required liability limits (instead of the previously lower SR-22 limits of 10/20/10) in place on the date of the alcohol related offense to not owe a reinstatement fee with the state. Even if an individual had these higher limits at the time of the DUI, the driver will still need to have their insurer provide the state with an FR-44 form.
If the driver didn't have these higher limits, then a driver who had their license reinstated prior to February 2, 2008, only paid a $15 reinstatement fee. The reinstatement fee on or after February 2, 2008, is now $150, $250, or $500 dollars. The Florida HSMV explains these fees to be broken down as the reinstatement fee on the first suspension after the law change as $150, a second suspension $250 and for a third suspension $500 dollars.
Florida Statute 324.023 is the specific law that speaks about the higher limits and her in part states that:
Every owner or operator of a motor vehicle that is required to be registered in this state, or that is located within this state, and who, regardless of adjudication of guilt, has been found guilty of or entered a plea of guilty or nolo contendere to a charge of driving under the influence under s. 316.193 after October 1, 2007, shall, establish and maintain the ability to respond in damages for liability on account of accidents arising out of the use of a motor vehicle in the amount of $100,000 because of bodily injury to, or death of, one person in any one crash and, subject to such limits for one person, in the amount of $300,000 because of bodily injury to, or death of, two or more persons in any one crash and in the amount of $50,000 because of property damage in any one crash.
The HSMV notes that these bodily injury liability and property damage limits do not change for second or subsequent DUI convictions.
So with the FR-44 in Florida, if you were convicted of a DUI (or other certain alcohol related driving offenses) after October 1, 2007 you would be required to carry a FR-44 with limits of 100/300/50. Any SR-22 received during the time period of October 1, 2007 through February 1, 2008, was accepted by the state at the 10/20/10 limit but then the driver and insurance company should have been notified by the Florida HSMV to be in compliance with section F.S. 324.023. Part of this notification was advising the driver that they would need to replace the SR-22 on file with an FR-44, prior to February 4, 2008.
Typically a SR-22 or FR-44 is required for three years; however, state laws are amended and so if you are required to carry either a SR-22 or FR-44 filing with Virginia, Florida or another state you should find out from the court or state's Department of Motor Vehicles how long you must keep this certificate of financial responsibility on file with the state.
Our website can handle the new requirements when you quote and purchase online. If you indicate the above infractions and request an SR-22, we will bump your coverage requirements and after you purchase the policy the insurance company will file the FR-44 on your behalf.