Ariel view of Pennsylvania

Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • What Is SR-22 Insurance?
  • The Different Types of SR-22 Insurance
  • Does Pennsylvania Have an Equivalent for SR-22 Insurance?
  • How to Get SR-22 Insurance in Pennsylvania
  • How Much Does SR-22 Insurance Cost in Pennsylvania?
  • What Happens If You Drive without SR-22 Insurance?
  • Alternatives to SR-22 Insurance in Pennsylvania
  • FAQs about SR-22 Insurance in Pennsylvania


Introduction

Obtaining SR-22 insurance can be a daunting process. It can become even more confusing if you move from a state that requires SR-22 insurance to one of the few states that don’t require SR-22 insurance.

Pennsylvania is one of a few states where drivers don’t need to carry SR-22 insurance after being convicted of a major traffic violation. Some of these other states are:

  • Minnesota.
  • Kentucky.
  • New Mexico.
  • Oklahoma.
  • Delaware.
  • New York.
  • North Carolina.
 

If you keep living in the state where your traffic violation occurred, obtaining SR-22 insurance is a relatively straightforward process. But what happens if you then move to a state that doesn’t require SR-22 insurance?

If, for example, you’re ordered to carry SR-22 insurance in California (where an SR-22 is mandatory after some driving offenses) and then move to Pennsylvania, you’ll have to take a few extra steps before you’re able to sign up with a new car insurance company in the state.

These are exactly the types of issues we’ll address in this article. We will go through everything you need to know about SR-22 insurance in Pennsylvania, including how to obtain it and where to find the best deals from car insurance companies.

To make the process easier, we’ve also compared quotes from some of the best car insurance companies in Pennsylvania to help you find the cheapest SR-22 insurance available.

We looked at the rates offered by car insurance companies in these five counties:

  • Philadelphia.
  • Delaware.
  • Montgomery.
  • Allegheny.
  • Lehigh.
 

What Is SR-22 Insurance?

SR-22 insurance is often called “financial responsibility insurance”, but it isn’t actually a type of insurance policy.

Instead, it’s a document you’ll need to carry to prove financial responsibility if you’re charged with a major traffic violation.

Financial responsibility is a state-based legal requirement that means drivers need to provide proof that they are able to pay for accident-related damages in the event of an at-fault car accident.

Some states allow you to prove financial responsibility with a minimum amount of savings, but for most people, it’s more realistic to have minimum auto liability coverage.

Key Point: Minimum Auto Liability Insurance Coverage

Auto liability coverage insurance helps to cover any damages that you may cause while driving, including property damage, and medical bills or lost wages to a third party who has been injured in the car accident.

Each state has unique minimum requirements, but three aspects are always covered:

  • Bodily injury coverage per person.
  • Bodily injury coverage per accident.
  • Property damage coverage per accident.

All Pennsylvania drivers need to meet the state’s financial responsibility requirements and carry liability insurance—even if they have a clean driving record.

Pennsylvania’s minimum auto liability insurance requirements are:

  • $15,000 bodily injury liability per person.
  • $30,000 bodily injury liability per accident.
  • $5,000 property damage liability per accident.
  • $5,000 personal injury protection (PIP).
 

Although Pennsylvania doesn’t require drivers with a poor driving record to carry SR-22 insurance, there is a scenario where you will need it: If you carry SR-22 insurance in another state, then move to Pennsylvania.

Generally, you will need to carry SR-22 insurance for three years. If you were charged with a serious traffic violation, you may need to carry SR-22 insurance for a longer period.

Some of the violations that can lead to carrying SR-22 insurance, include:

  • Speeding.
  • Reckless driving.
  • Being at-fault in a major accident.
  • Fleeing the scene of an at-fault accident.
  • A DUI conviction.
  • Driving without car insurance.
  • Getting an excessive number of points on your driving record.
  • Having outstanding unpaid child support payments.
  • You have a revoked or suspended license and want to reinstate it.
 

If you’re charged with a serious traffic violation in Pennsylvania, you won’t be required to carry SR-22 insurance. But, just because you won’t need SR-22, it doesn’t mean you won’t face other legal penalties.

Pennsylvania DUI laws are some of the harshest in the country. If you’re charged with a DUI, some of the penalties you’re likely to face for a first offense, include:

  • A misdemeanor criminal charge.
  • Up to six months probation.
  • A $300 fine.
  • Alcohol dependency treatment.
  • Alcohol highway safety school.
 

If you’re charged with a DUI for a second or subsequent time, you may also be required to install an ignition interlock device.

This is a breathalyzer for your vehicle that prevents you from turning on your car ignition if it senses alcohol in your system.

If you’re charged with a DUI or another serious traffic violation in Pennsylvania, your auto insurance rates are also likely to increase.

Key Point: Auto Insurance Rates

When you sign up for car insurance, you and the car insurance company will agree on a monthly rate you need to pay in exchange for insurance coverage. Your auto insurance rate is influenced by a number of factors, including:

  • Your age.
  • Your driving record.
  • Your marital status.
  • Your location.
  • Your credit score.
  • The value of your car.

If you move to Pennsylvania with SR-22 insurance and need to find car insurance in the state, it might be difficult to find an insurance company that will offer you coverage. This is because you’ll be considered a high-risk driver.

Car insurance companies classify drivers as “high-risk” for a number of reasons, including nondriving-related reasons. These can include:

  • Young drivers under 25 years old.
  • Living in an area with high crime.
  • Having been found at-fault in an accident.
  • Having too many points on your driving record.
  • Having your car insurance canceled.
  • Unpaid child support payments.
  • Having a poor credit score.
 

The Different Types of SR-22 Insurance

Just because Pennsylvania state law doesn’t require you to carry SR-22 insurance after an infringement, some car insurance companies do still offer SR-22 insurance for drivers who have been mandated to carry it by another state.

Here are the three different types of SR-22 insurance you may need to carry:

Owner SR-22 Insurance

You may need Owner SR-22 insurance if:

  • You’ve moved from a state where SR-22 insurance is required.
  • You own a car or plan to buy a car.
  • You live in the same household as someone who owns a car.
 

Non-Owner SR-22 Insurance

If you carry SR-22 insurance in another state and have since moved to Pennsylvania and don’t own a car anymore, you may think you no longer need to carry SR-22 insurance. However, this isn’t accurate.

Some car insurance companies offer Non-owner SR-22 insurance for drivers who:

  • Do not own a car and don’t plan to buy one.
  • May drive from time to time (e.g. renting a car).
  • Live in the same house as someone who does own a car.
 

Owner/Operator SR-22 Insurance

If you own multiple vehicles or are required to drive vehicles for work, you will need to carry Owner/operator SR-22 insurance.

Does Pennsylvania Have an Equivalent for SR-22 Insurance?

Although Pennsylvania doesn’t have an equivalent for SR-22 insurance, there are still serious consequences for committing a traffic violation. Depending on the severity of the offense, this can include:

  • A driver’s license suspension.
  • Fines.
  • Jail time.
  • Community service.
  • Points on your driving record.
  • Increased car insurance rates.
 

If you’ve been charged with a driving offense, you can expect your car insurance rates to increase from between 40% to over 100%.

How to Get SR-22 Insurance in Pennsylvania

If you move from another state to Pennsylvania, you will need to get new car insurance once you’re in the state.

Federal law requires drivers to be insured in the same state they live in, so if you don’t obtain new insurance you may be found guilty of committing insurance fraud.

Luckily, most car insurers give you a 90-day grace period to obtain new insurance.

Looking for SR-22 insurance in another state? To find free insurance quotes for the cheapest SR-22 car insurance premiums in other U.S. states, read our articles below:

Ohio
North Carolina
New Jersey
Virginia
California
New York
Arizona

Finding cheap SR-22 insurance in Pennsylvania isn’t difficult but it can be time-consuming. To find the best deal, you’ll need to do one of the following:

  • Get quotes from various insurance companies: While this is a great way of collecting quotes, you’ll need to answer the same questions multiple times. This isn’t too time-consuming if you only call two or three insurance companies, but if you want to collect more than five quotes you’re likely to spend a few hours on the phone.
  • Go through a licensed insurance agent: A licensed insurance agent will collect quotes on your behalf, but they may charge a fee or commission over and above your auto insurance rates.
  • Use Cheap Insurance: We’ll help you find personalized online quotes from car insurance companies, and the process is much faster than comparing quotes yourself.
 

We’re committed to helping you save money and find the best coverage, so we’ve put together quotes comparing the costs offered by various car insurance companies.

How Much Does SR-22 Insurance Cost in Pennsylvania?

Finding adequate insurance if you need to carry SR-22 insurance can be difficult. Luckily, we’ve done the hard work of finding cheap insurance for you by comparing the auto insurance rates offered by these four car insurance companies:

  • Dairyland.
  • Plymouth Rock.
  • Midvale.
  • Bristol West.
 

According to our research, the cheapest car insurance coverage is Plymouth Rock with average rates of $197.60.

The most expensive car insurance coverage is Bristol West with average rates of $359.40.

Provider Philadelphia Delaware Montgomery Allegheny Lehigh Average
Dairyland $374 $374 $203 $174 $310 $287.00
Plymouth Rock $313 $236 $160 $130 $149 $197.60
Midvale $443 $321 $265 $266 $268 $312.60
Bristol West $533 $390 $273 $273 $328 $359.40

Looking for customized free insurance quotes? Save time and find the best deals by getting in touch with one of our insurance agents today.

What Happens If You Drive without SR-22 Insurance?

If you allow your SR-22 car insurance policy to lapse, the insurance carrier that issued your SR-22 documents will file an SR-26 form with the DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles).

This form notifies the DMV that you are no longer upholding your SR-22 insurance.

In this event, the state will suspend your driving privileges and notify all other states so once you move to Pennsylvania, you won’t be able to get a new driver’s license, register your vehicle, or obtain car insurance.

If you’re caught driving without SR-22 insurance at a regular traffic stop, you may:

  • Have your registration suspended.
  • Have your driver’s license suspended or revoked.
  • Be issued a $500 fine.
  • Be sentenced to serve jail time.
 

Alternatives to SR-22 Insurance in Pennsylvania

Depending on the type of violation you were charged with and which state it occurred in, you may need to carry documentation different from an SR-22.

These are some of the alternatives to an SR-22 in Pennsylvania:

SR-22A Insurance

If you violate the terms of your SR-22 insurance by, for example, allowing the policy to lapse or being charged with another traffic violation, some states will require you to carry SR-22A insurance.

SR-22A insurance is only used in three states in the U.S.:

  • Georgia.
  • Texas.
  • Missouri.
 

If you carry SR-22A insurance and move from Georgia, Missouri, or Texas to Pennsylvania, you will need to notify your insurance carrier.

Unfortunately, SR-22A insurance is much more expensive than SR-22 insurance and you will usually need to pay six months of your auto insurance rates upfront.

SR-21 Insurance

SR-21 insurance proves that you had car insurance at the time of an accident.

If you were in an accident that resulted in property damage that totaled over $1,000 or caused injury or death, you will need to ask your insurer for an SR-21 form within ten days.

FR-44 Insurance

FR-44 insurance is only issued in two states:

  • Virginia.
  • Florida.
 

An FR-44 is only mandated in circumstances where the driver has received a DUI conviction.

If you carry FR-44 insurance and move to Pennsylvania, you will need to tell your car insurance company in the state.

SR-50 Insurance

SR-50 insurance is almost identical to SR-22 insurance, but it’s only required in Indiana. Like SR-22 insurance, it is issued in instances where a driver has been charged with:

  • Speeding.
  • Reckless driving.
  • Being at-fault in a major accident.
  • Fleeing the scene of an at-fault accident.
  • A DUI conviction.
  • Driving without car insurance.
  • Getting an excessive number of points on your driving record.
  • Having outstanding unpaid child support payments.
 

If you have SR-50 insurance and move from Indiana to Pennsylvania, you will need to inform car insurance companies when getting a quote.

FAQs about SR-22 Insurance in Pennsylvania

Does Pennsylvania have SR-22 insurance?

No, Pennsylvania does not require SR-22 insurance. However, if you need to carry SR-22 insurance in another state, you will have to inform your insurer in Pennsylvania.

If you allow your SR-22 insurance to lapse, the insurance carrier that issued your SR-22 documents will file an SR-26 form with the DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles).

In this event, the state will suspend your driving privileges and notify all other states so once you move to Pennsylvania, you won’t be able to get a new driver’s license, register your vehicle, or obtain car insurance.

Who in Pennsylvania needs SR-22 insurance?

If you have committed one of the below traffic violations in a state that does require SR-22 insurance, you will need to obtain SR-22 insurance in Pennsylvania:

  • Speeding.
  • Reckless driving.
  • Being at-fault in a major accident.
  • Fleeing the scene of an at-fault accident.
  • A DUI conviction.
  • Driving without car insurance.
  • Getting an excessive number of points on your driving record.
  • Having outstanding unpaid child support payments.
  • You have a revoked or suspended license and want to reinstate it.
 

Who in Pennsylvania has the cheapest car insurance for SR-22?

According to our research, here are the costs for SR-22 insurance in Pennsylvania:

  • The cheapest car insurance provider is Plymouth Rock with average rates of $197.60.
  • The second cheapest car insurance provider is Dairyland with average rates of $287.
  • The third cheapest car insurance provider is Midvale with average rates of $312.60.
  • The fourth cheapest car insurance provider is Bristol West with average rates of $359.40.
 

How long do I need SR-22 insurance in Pennsylvania?

Usually, drivers will be required to have SR-22 insurance in Pennsylvania for three years.

If your SR-22 insurance lapses during this period and you need to renew it, you may have to start those three years all over again.

In some cases, depending on the severity of the traffic violation, you may need to carry an SR-22 for a longer period.

What happens if I don’t get SR-22 Insurance in Pennsylvania?

If you drive without SR-22 insurance in Pennsylvania, you may be subject to the following penalties:

  • Your vehicle registration may be suspended.
  • Your driver’s license may be suspended or revoked.
  • You may be issued a $500 fine.
  • You may be sentenced to serve time in jail.
 

If an accident occurs and you do not have SR-22 insurance, you will be held personally responsible for paying the other party’s medical bills, lost wages, or repairing or replacing their damaged property.

Is there a way to get around my SR-22 in Pennsylvania?

No. If you are required to carry SR-22 insurance by another state, you will need to get SR-22 insurance in Pennsylvania. The only exceptions are if you need to carry SR-22A insurance, FR-44 insurance, or SR-50 insurance instead of SR-22 insurance.