SR-22 Insurance or Certificate of Financial Responsibility is not exactly an insurance policy, despite the common misconception, but rather a form that is filed with the state on behalf of people who have had traffic violations resulting in a suspended license. These drivers are considered high-risk and must follow state guidelines to have their driving privileges reinstated.

There are several reasons for the state to require a driver to file an SR-22 form. Violations such as at-fault accidents, driving without car insurance, having a DUI/DWI, or driving recklessly are all traffic offenses that may require filing said form to show that the driver is financially responsible should he or she be involved in another traffic accident or incident.

Drivers ordered to file an SR-22 form must do so through their insurance agent, since they are required to have the minimum personal and property liability coverage as per their state's requirements. If coverage lapses, the insurance company is then legally required to inform the state, and the individual’s driver’s license can be suspended or even fully revoked.

Since not all insurance companies are licensed to issue the SR-22 form or willing to issue a policy to high-risk drivers, finding the right insurer can take longer than purchasing conventional auto insurance. Furthermore, the limits required vary by state. In most cases, switching to a high-risk car insurance policy will significantly alter the customer's costs, though each company may still be able to offer some additional perks, discounts, or benefits. Finally, just as with any other car insurance policy, customer service, price, and how financially solid the insurance company is, must also be taken into account.

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Customer Questions & Answers

Is SR-22 a type of car insurance?

An SR-22 is not an insurance policy in and of itself, but rather proof of insurance. More specifically, an SR-22 is a document of financial responsibility required by the state and provided by your auto insurance company that verifies you have auto insurance liability coverage. You will only be required to get an SR-22 if you have been deemed a high-risk driver, which can happen for certain driving-related violations like DIU convictions, reckless driving, or accidents caused by uninsured drivers. When you are designated a high-risk driver, your driver license will typically be suspended, and either the court or your state DMV will send you a notice requiring you to get an SR-22.

How much does an SR-22 cost?

There is no definitive answer to this question, as prices vary from state to state and for each person seeking an SR-22. Also, insurance quotes vary amongst providers. Generally, the cost of filing fee depends on how much your state charges to file the document. In most states, insurance providers charge between $15 to $35 fee for filing and renewing your SR-22. The filing fee is a one time charge that you will need to pay when the insurance company files the SR-22. You will not have to continue to pay the filing fee for each renewal. The only time you will have to pay more is if you allow your policy to lapse.

Will my insurance rates go up with an SR-22?

Not all providers will agree to ensure a high-risk driver, but those that do, will generally increase your premiums. SR-22 insurance requirements are directly related to violations and incidents that are almost guaranteed to increase your rates. The cost of remaining insured as a high-risk driver varies, depending on factors such as your age, your driving record, and your provider. In order to lower your costs, it’s important to ask the potential insurance company about discounts for high-risk drivers. Some discounts include a senior citizen discount, a good student discount, and even a multiple policy discount if you insure your home and vehicles with one company. Not everyone that files for SR-22 reports higher insurance premiums. But the only way to know how exactly how much you will pay is to get an insurance quote from a provider.

Will I have to pay my insurance up front with as SR-22?

Because an SR-22 is proof of current and future car insurance, you may not be able to pay your auto insurance premium in monthly payments. Instead, you may be required to purchase each policy term up front. In order for them to guarantee the coverage, you have to be able to pay them for the entire amount of the premium. There may be some insurance companies out there that you can find that may be willing to take installment payments, but they are rare.

How long will I need an SR-22?

How long you will need an SR-22 will vary from state. However, SR-22’s are commonly required for a minimum of three years. In that time, continuous coverage must be maintained. Your insurance company may offer an automatic renewal that ensures your document remains active. If there is an insurance lapse or cancellation, your car insurance company is legally obligated to notify the DMV and your license will be suspended. Also, if you commit another violation or are involved in another instance that may require an SR-22 filing within the initial mandated time period, you may be required to file your SR-22 for longer. It’s your responsibility to keep the SR-22 up to date, so you need to check with the potential insurance provider to see what its rules are regarding this documentation.

Will my car insurance be canceled after a DUI?

DUIs do not always result in policy cancellations. If you have been convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, you will face challenges with your car insurance. Since driving under the influence is so dangerous, car insurance companies are reluctant to provide auto insurance to people convicted of operating a vehicle DUIs. If an accident is caused by drunk driving, the claim may be paid by the insurance company, or it may be partially denied. In some cases, the car insurance company will pay for any damage the drunk driver causes to another person but not the insured vehicle. In other cases, the insurance company will pay the claim in its entirety and then cancel the insurance policy. Sometimes an increase in the policy premium is the only effect on the insurance.

How do I get a non-owner SR-22 insurance?

You may need to purchase a non-owner SR22 certificate when you need to reinstate your driver’s license, but do not own a vehicle. A non-owner SR22 is an endorsement to a non-owner insurance policy. To get a quote for non-owner insurance, and to purchase coverage, you’ll need to provide some basic personal information, along with your driver’s license number, and a payment method (such as credit card). Though most major auto insurance companies offer non-owner policies, none that we’ve found offer online quotes for these, relying on agents. The best choice for non-owner auto insurance will partially depend on your driving history and personal information, as these are the principal factors which will help determine your premium. In addition, some insurers do not provide non-owner insurance in certain states, so some companies may not be an option where you live. To ensure you pay the cheapest rate, we recommend calling multiple insurers and comparing at least three to four quotes before you make a purchase.

What is an FR-44?

The FR-44 is similar to an SR-22 financial responsibility certificate. If you are convicted of a DUI or DWI in Florida or Virginia, you might be required to file an FR-44 to reinstate your license with the DMV. Unlike a more general SR-22, an FR-44 is specific to DIU of DWI convictions. If you lose your license as a result of this violation, your insurance company must file an FR-44 on your behalf to prove to your state that you are covered by increased liability insurance. In addition, an FR-44 requires your liability coverage limits to be significantly higher than the state minimum. With a FR-44 your liability limits must be equal to or greater than $50,000 per person / $100,000 per accident/ $40,000 property damage. In Florida, an FR-44 is officially called a Florida Uniform Financial Responsibility Certificate, while in Virginia it is simply referred to as an FR-44 form.