- posted: Oct. 23, 2014
The secrets herein are not known by many DUI lawyers, as they only focus on the guilt or innocence of their client. Typically these lawyers do not consider the financial consequences that all DUI drivers will encounter when they renew their auto insurance. I believe it is important for an attorney to consider all consequences of a DUI arrest to competently represent a DUI client.
Most of us know of someone who has been arrested for a DUI (Driving under the influence), DWI (Driving while intoxicated) or OUI (Operating under the influence). They are all a “Drunk Driving” charge, but have different names in the various states from which many of us originally called home. It is similar to a Hurricane being called a Typhoon or Cyclone in other parts of the world.
M readers know that after a DUI arrest, the driver must request a DMV hearing within 10 days or s/he will lose their license for many months. This mandatory administrative DMV hearing will automatically presume that the driver is under the influence if the chemical test results show the driver to be .08 or higher. A simple secret is that it is not how many drinks you had, but how much alcohol was in each drink.
Another secret is that you should go to the DMV and pay $6 to get a copy of your DMV record and at the same time REQUEST A DMV IDENTIFICATION CARD. You will need some form of ID with a picture during this DUI process and for travel. In addition the information in the DMV record will educate your attorney on facts of this DUI arrest. Should you have an unsuccessful trial or agree to a plea bargain, in order to get your license back, one must pay a reissuance fee to DMV, sign up for a DUI class and file an SR22 which shows proof of insurance. However, the Biggest SECRET many knowledgeable DUI lawyers do not know is that they should advise their clients to NOT use their regular auto insurance carrier for filing the SR22. Instead they should use insurance programs available from a few new auto insurance carriers that specialize in insurance for DUI cases. For further information on these new carriers, contact me. The secret is to have clients file the SR22 with a new auto insurance carrier that is one other than their existing carrier. Doing this allows my clients to get back on the road, whether they may be dealing with a potential conviction or a DMV suspension… without highlighting the DUI to their regular auto carrier.
To be the most successful in dealing with the SR22 issue, the basic secret is to have a DUI defendant contact the new insurance company BEFORE they have an adverse ruling from DMV or a plea/conviction from the court. In other words, they must file while they are still INNOCENT.
Drivers need to protect their current insurance premium and thankfully there are a few insurance companies I use to protect my clients and save them the additional premiums that their existing auto insurance companies will impose. Most lawyers are not aware of this secret.
If called after the suspension, these new insurance companies can still help but they may not be as successful in saving clients from higher insurance rates. To do this, they would need to sign up for a supplemental policy which reduces the risk of a notification by the existing carrier that would affect the driver’s premium. The SR22 can be filed electronically by the new insurance agent and the entire process can completed in three minutes. The companies are typically honorable and if an SR22 is not later required, they will provide a 100% refund.
The new SR22 policy price is based on age, zip code and one’s driving record. The average insurance premium after a conviction increases by $2,500 with your existing carrier. Why not at least try to protect your insurance premiums from going through the roof?