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Can’t Afford FR-44 Insurance? Here’s What You Can Do

FR-44 insurance, required in some states for high-risk drivers after a DUI or other serious traffic violation, can be significantly more expensive than standard auto insurance. If you find yourself unable to afford FR-44 insurance, it’s essential to explore options and strategies to manage this financial burden. This guide will provide detailed insights into what FR-44 insurance is, why it’s expensive, and practical steps you can take to make it more affordable.



Understanding FR-44 Insurance

What is FR-44 Insurance?
  • Definition: FR-44 insurance is a certificate of financial responsibility required by some states (like Florida and Virginia) for drivers convicted of serious traffic offenses, such as DUI or DWI. It is similar to the SR-22 but typically requires higher liability coverage limits.
  • Purpose: Ensures that high-risk drivers carry sufficient insurance to cover potential damages from future incidents.
Why is FR-44 Insurance More Expensive?
  • Higher Coverage Requirements: FR-44 policies often require significantly higher liability limits than standard policies, increasing the premium cost.
  • High-Risk Designation: Drivers required to carry an FR-44 are considered high-risk, leading insurers to charge higher rates due to the increased likelihood of claims.


Strategies to Manage and Afford FR-44 Insurance

1. Adjust Coverage Options
  • Minimum Required Coverage: While you must meet the FR-44 requirements, avoid adding optional coverages that can increase premiums.
  • Higher Deductibles: Opting for a higher deductible can lower your premium, but ensure you can afford the deductible amount in case of a claim.
2. Take Advantage of Discounts
  • Safe Driver Discounts: Some insurers offer discounts for maintaining a clean driving record post-conviction.
  • Bundling Policies: If you have other insurance needs (like home or renters insurance), bundling them with your auto insurance can result in discounts.
  • Usage-Based Insurance: Programs that monitor your driving habits and reward safe driving with lower premiums might be beneficial.
3. Improve Your Credit Score
  • Credit Impact: In many states, your credit score can affect your insurance rates. Improving your credit score may help reduce your premium over time.
  • Financial Management: Pay bills on time, reduce outstanding debts, and correct any errors on your credit report.
4. Consider Non-Owner FR-44 Insurance
  • Non-Owner Policy: If you don’t own a car but need to meet FR-44 requirements, a non-owner FR-44 policy might be more affordable. This policy provides liability coverage when you drive someone else’s car but does not cover a vehicle you own.
5. Explore State Assistance Programs
  • State Insurance Programs: Some states offer programs to help high-risk drivers obtain affordable insurance. Check with your state’s department of insurance for available programs.


Long-Term Solutions to Reduce Insurance Costs

1. Maintain a Clean Driving Record
  • Avoid Violations: Additional traffic violations can further increase your insurance costs. Drive safely and adhere to all traffic laws.
  • Time Factor: Insurance rates typically decrease over time if you maintain a clean record. After a few years, you may be eligible for standard rates again.
2. Complete a Defensive Driving Course
  • Course Benefits: Many insurers offer discounts for completing a state-approved defensive driving course. This can also help demonstrate your commitment to safe driving.
3. Seek Legal Assistance
  • Legal Advice: If the cost of FR-44 insurance is prohibitive, consult with a lawyer specializing in traffic violations. They might provide options to reduce or eliminate the FR-44 requirement based on your case specifics.
4. Downsize Your Vehicle
  • Lower-Value Car: Insuring a lower-value car can reduce your comprehensive and collision coverage premiums. Consider downsizing to a less expensive vehicle.


Affording FR-44 insurance can be challenging, but by shopping around, adjusting coverage options, taking advantage of discounts, and considering non-owner policies, you can manage the cost more effectively. Additionally, maintaining a clean driving record and improving your credit score can help lower your premiums over time. Explore state assistance programs and seek legal advice if necessary. By taking these steps, you can navigate the financial burden of FR-44 insurance and work towards more affordable coverage in the future. 

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