A person’s license can be suspended for many reasons, including a DUI, leaving the scene of an accident, repeated moving violations, or failing to carry car insurance, just to name a few. If you’re in this position you are probably wondering, “does a suspended license affect insurance?” The answer is yes, you can have car insurance with suspended license, it just might be more of a hassle and will likely cost more.
Why do you need insurance while your license is suspended?
There are several reasons you may want to maintain car insurance while you have a suspended license, and in some circumstances you may even be required to do so. For example, if you have a loan through a bank or dealership, you probably have to insure your car even if you aren’t driving it. In some cases, the state may require you to show you are maintaining continuous coverage. You may also want to keep coverage so that other drivers on your policy can still drive the vehicle. Some insurance companies will allow you to maintain just comprehensive coverage if the car is being stored, which only covers damage resulting from theft, natural causes, and falling objects, etc.
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What happens to your policy if you have coverage when your license is suspended?
If you already have coverage when your suspension begins, you may still be able to insure a car without a license. Some policies contain exclusionary clauses for suspended drivers, so you should read the fine print of your policy. Other policies may require you to report the suspension to your insurer, so it is always a good idea to make the phone call—your insurer will find out about your suspension when it comes time to renew your policy, which may cause them to refuse. If your insurer is still willing to offer coverage, you may be labeled a high-risk driver resulting in increased premiums. Some insurance companies will allow you to name a different covered driver on the policy and remove yourself, but this may involve putting that person on the title of the vehicle as well.
Can you get suspended license insurance if you don’t already have coverage?
With some work and flexibility, it is still possible to find an insurance company to offer coverage even if you did not have insurance when your license was suspended. Some states may allow you to seek a restricted driver’s license for limited privileges, which can make finding insurance easier. If this is not an option for you, you may consider naming another driver on the policy. Another option is to seek a high risk policy. Many of the most well-known insurance companies offer these policies but if you are not having any luck finding coverage, you might want to consider some of their subsidiaries or non-standard insurance companies.
If you absolutely cannot find insurance, your safest bet is to park your car and turn in the license plates for the duration of your suspension.
How long does a license suspension stay on your driving record?
Like many legal questions, the answer to this will depend on where you live. State laws vary regarding how long the suspension will stay on your record, and the length of time may depend on the reasons you lost your license in the first place.
RESOURCE: REMOVING SUSPENSION FROM DRIVING RECORD (via Avvo)
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What happens after your suspension is over?
Once your license is reinstated, you will likely still be considered a high risk driver while the suspension still shows on your record. This means you will have to pay more for car insurance. Insurance companies use your driving record to calculate your rates so if you have not driven for some time, you may be refused coverage by some companies. Depending on what state you live in, once you find insurance your insurer may need to submit a form proving that you have coverage. In other states, you can provide the proof by showing your insurance card.
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