Archive for March, 2010

California’s Financial Responsibility Law

Thursday, March 25th, 2010

As residents of California where most people own at least one car, it is hard not to know our legal obligations with respect to liability insurance and proper procedure in the event of an accident. Still, there are certain details that we all tend to forget, and a few we may never have learned. Here is a quick refresher course…

Always carry written proof of financial responsibility in your vehicle. It can be a valid liability insurance policy for damage to someone else’s property or person; a $35,000 surety bond; a DMV-issued self-insurance certificate; or a DMV acknowledgment of a $35,000 cash deposit.

Here are other legal requirements related to your financial responsibility:

▪ If a peace officer requests proof of insurance, you must show it.

▪ If the other driver or a property owner requests it after an accident, you must show it.

▪ If you have an accident, whether or not you are at fault, and there is an injury, death or property damage of over $750, you or your insurance agent or legal representative must file a Traffic Accident Report (Form SR-1) with the DMV within 10 days.

▪ If you do have proof of insurance and if you do not file an SR-1, your license will be suspended.

For more information on your rights and responsibilities as a driver in California, visit the Department of Motor Vehicles website (

If you are cited for a moving violation or arrested for a DUI, contact Attorney Lauri Stock and her team of experienced professionals at Stock Stephens, LLP for immediate assistance.

Stock Stephens, LLP
(619) 234-5488