What Does SR-22 Stand For Anyway?

We have a confession to make. In spite of more than a decade in the car insurance biz, and with insurance experts in 14 different offices across the states, there are still one or 2 car insurance puzzlers that leave us at a loss. For instance, what in the world does the “SR” in “SR-22” actually stand for?

We could easily tell you the Top 6 Things You Should Know about SR-22s, where you can find an SR-22, and why you might need an SR-22, but ask us what that pesky “SR” stands for and … well … we’re stumped.

The meaning of SR-22

Not to be stymied by a couple of initials, however, we decided to get to work investigating the matter. And after a little digging (and a lot of hold music), here’s what we found out: it doesn’t stand for anything.

What? After all that, the truth of the matter is that the S and the R are just arbitrary letters strung together in front of an arbitrary number. According to several (surprisingly chipper) DMV reps and a guy at the Department of Insurance named Sean, the official-sounding moniker, while sounding important, in truth signifies nothing.

During our investigation, however, we came across several feasible hypotheses on what it might stand for, including state report, safety responsibility, state reference, and state requirement.

Additionally, we discovered that the SR-22 is also referred to as a Financial Responsibility Filing, a Certificate of Financial Responsibility (CFR), and SR-22 insurance.

No wonder we were stumped. But having finally gotten to the bottom of the SR-22 question, we’re pleased to report that when it comes to auto insurance, we’re now more expert than ever before.

Find out if you really need an SR-22, and get the rest of your questions answered here.


How Marriage Affects Car Insurance

As the saying goes, “First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes updating your car insurance coverage …”

Okay, maybe that’s not how it really goes, but it should. As you know, when you choose to tie the knot, many aspects of your life will undoubtedly change — finances, living arrangements, and, yes, even car insurance requirements.

For instance, did you know that once you get married, your spouse’s driving history could affect your premiums? Or that you could save on car insurance by combining your 2 policies into one?

In love? Intrigued? Check out our myth-busting insights to learn the many ways in which marriage affects car insurance.

New Child Safety Seat Standards

Back in April, we provided our Top 3 Car Seat Tips, which included advice on how to choose the best car seat for your child. Since then, however, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) have revised their best practice guidelines for child car seats.

And their recommendations might surprise you.

The new child safety seat standards: “as long as possible”

For years the AAP and NHTSA suggested turning rear-facing car seats forward when the child reached the age of one. They’ve now updated the standard, proposing parents keep children in rear-facing car seats until they turn 2.

What’s more, the NHTSA has gone so far as to suggest that children remain in each of the graduated seat types for “as long as possible.” This means keeping your child in a particular seat until he or she has reached the maximum height and weight for that type of seat, regardless of age.

Why the revised standard?

The answer is simple. In the event of a crash, rear-facing child seats provide improved support for the head, neck, and spine.

A lingering problem

Despite the best efforts of organizations like the AAP and NHTSA, ignorance of proper child safety practices remains a big problem, and a difficult one to overcome.

With the wide variety of car seats and vehicle designs out there, it can be hard to tell if the seat you plan to buy is the right choice. In the end it comes down to parents doing a fair bit of research and carefully following the instructions provided with the seats they purchase.

What are the basic rules for car seats?

Here is what the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) says:

  • All children should ride rear-facing until they are at least 2 years old or until they reach the rear-facing height or weight limits.
  • Children should continue riding in harness-equipped, forward-facing restraints as long as possible, up to the height and weight limits of the seat.
  • After that, they should use belt-positioning booster seats until adult safety belts fit properly, usually when the child reaches 4 feet 9 inches.
  • Children should ride in the rear seat until at least age 13.

If you’d like to learn even more about proper child seat use, check out the American Academy of Pediatrics’ comprehensive guide or this helpful page from the IIHS: Keeping Children Safe in Crashes.

Oh, and happy Child Safety Seat Week.

Uncover the Truth Behind Life Insurance Myths

We recently dispelled a few car insurance myths right here on the Esurance blog. In honor of Life Insurance Awareness Month, we’re using our myth-busting power to uncover the truth behind a few life insurance myths as well.

Myth: I don’t need life insurance

This myth persists, in large part, due to the fact that people don’t like to talk, much less think, about life insurance. But wouldn’t it be nice to know your family is taken care of if something happens to you?

After all, life insurance is designed to guard your family against all sorts of financial challenges. It can cover existing debts and unexpected expenses. It can even pay for college for your kids or help keep the family business afloat. Think about it long enough and you’re sure to come up with some compelling reasons for having life insurance. Unfortunately, once you get past this myth, you run up against our second life insurance myth.

Myth: I can’t afford life insurance

It’s surprising how many people think life insurance is too expensive to consider. The truth of the matter is that you can spend less on life insurance than lattes and for just a few dollars a day protect your family.

Here are 5 tips for saving on life insurance, courtesy of our partner at Efinancial:

  1. Buy sooner rather than later. (Rates increase as you get older.)
  2. Get healthy before the medical exam. (Typically, the healthier you are, the lower your rate.)
  3. Get the right amount of coverage. (Buy only what you need.)
  4. Talk to an expert. (The wrong policy can end up costing more in the long run.)
  5. Shop around. (When you get a quote with Esurance, you can compare it with rates from other carriers.)

Don’t buy into the myth that you don’t need or can’t afford life insurance. To celebrate Life Insurance Awareness Month, we recommend at least checking out a few different policies. You might be surprised how affordable (and worthwhile) good ol’ life insurance can be!

And if you have questions about life insurance, our life insurance FAQs can help.

Do You Know Your Right of Way?

Many traffic laws involve right of way. Right-of-way laws (also known as failure-to-yield laws) determine the priority or order of drivers in a variety of traffic situations. Right of way involves more than just other cars. It also determines how drivers and pedestrians handle crosswalks and other situations.

Right of way includes:

4-way intersections (who has the right of way?)

Dealing with 4-way intersections varies from state to state. Most states require drivers to leave the intersection in the same order that they arrived. If 2 or more drivers arrive at the same time, in most states the law requires that you yield to the vehicle on your right.

Pedestrians at crosswalks

In some states, pedestrians always have the right of way, whether they’re in a marked intersection or not. Other states take a stricter approach, sometimes giving the motorist right of way if they have already started to proceed into an intersection.

Traffic lights

Running traffic signals and lights is one of the more common moving violations. It is also a leading cause of crashes. What’s more, both tickets and accidents can cause car insurance rates to rise for policyholders.

Related link

Failure to yield laws