By

Tito Bucheli

Updated

March 25, 2024

Edited By

Fausto Bucheli Jr
Image Credit: Pixabay

Getting an SR22 requirement can be a confusing and stressful experience.¬†Cheap Insurance¬†will explain what you need to know about¬†SR22 insurance, from what it is to how to obtain it. When it comes to an¬†SR22 requirement, don’t despair. By the end of this article, you will have the knowledge to navigate this situation calmly and efficiently.

Key Takeaways:

  • An SR22 is a certificate filed with your state’s DMV, proving you maintain the minimum required car insurance liability coverage.
  • Common reasons for needing an SR22 include DUI/DWI convictions, driving without insurance, or multiple traffic violations.
  • SR22 filing fees vary depending on your driving record, insurer, location, and existing coverage. Expect a range of $25-$75 monthly on top of your regular car insurance premium.
  • To obtain SR22 coverage, contact your current insurer first, or shop around for¬† SR22 quotes from companies specializing in high-risk drivers.
  • Maintain compliance by upholding minimum car insurance coverage, renewing your auto insurance policy on time, and communicating with your insurer if switching providers during the SR22 requirement period.

What Exactly Is An SR22? Understanding the Requirements

An SR22 is not actually insurance itself, but a¬†certificate of financial responsibility¬†filed with your state’s Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) by your¬†auto insurance¬†provider. This certificate proves that you maintain the minimum required liability car insurance coverage on your vehicle.

  • The state mandates an SR22 requirement as a consequence for certain driving offenses.
  • You obtain SR22 coverage through your existing auto insurance company or a new provider who offers SR22 filing services.
  • Your insurer files the SR22 certificate electronically with the DMV, demonstrating your compliance with the state’s minimum liability insurance requirements.
  • You’ll need to maintain this SR22 filing for a state-determined period, typically 3-5 years.

Why Did I Get Hit With An SR22? Common Reasons for Needing One

There are several reasons why you might be required to obtain an SR22. Here are some of the most common:

  • DUI/DWI:¬†Driving under the influence (DUI)¬†or driving while intoxicated (DWI) convictions often trigger an SR22 requirement.
  • Driving Without Insurance: Operating a vehicle without valid car insurance can lead to an SR22 requirement as a condition for regaining your driver’s license.
  • Multiple Traffic Violations: Accumulating a significant number of moving violations such as¬†speeding tickets, and other vehicle code infractions within a certain time frame might result in an SR22 requirement depending on your state’s laws.
  • Accident While Uninsured: If you are involved in an accident and were uninsured at the time, the state might mandate an SR22 for a certain period.
 

It’s important to note that these are just some common reasons.¬† The specific situations that trigger SR22 requirements can vary by state.¬†¬†

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How Much Does An SR22 Cost? National Averages and Cost Factors

  • Your Driving Record: Drivers with poor driving records, including DUIs or frequent traffic violations, will typically pay more for¬†SR-22 insurance¬†due to the perceived higher risk.
  • Your Insurance Company: Different¬†car insurance¬†companies set their own rates for SR22 filing fees, which can vary significantly.
  • Your Location: SR22 filing fees can also differ by state.
  • Your Existing Coverage: The cost of adding SR22 filing to your existing car insurance policy might be lower compared to obtaining a whole new policy with SR22 coverage.
 

Here’s a ballpark range to consider: While there’s no single national average, expect SR22 filing fees to typically range between $25 and $75 per month, on top of your regular car insurance premium.¬† Some insurers might charge a one-time fee instead of a monthly cost.

Here are some tips for saving money on SR22 insurance:

  • Get Insurance Quotes:¬†Compare car insurance quotes¬†from multiple insurance companies to find the most competitive rate for an SR22 filing.
  • Maintain a¬†Clean Driving Record: Avoiding further traffic violations during your SR22 requirement period can demonstrate responsibility to your insurer, potentially leading to lower auto insurance renewal costs.
  • Ask About Discounts: Inquire about any available¬†car insurance discounts¬†you might qualify for, such as good driver or multi-policy discounts offered by some insurers.
 

How Do I Get An SR22? A Step-by-Step Guide

Obtaining SR22 insurance is a relatively straightforward process. Here’s how to get started:

  1. Contact Your Current Insurance Company: The first step is to reach out to your existing auto insurance provider. Many companies offer SR22 filing services as an add-on to your current policy. This might be the most convenient and potentially cost-effective option, especially if you already have a good driving record with your insurer.
  2. Provide Necessary Information: Once you choose an insurer, they will likely request specific information from you, including:
    • Driver’s license details
    • Vehicle registration information
    • Proof of current car insurance coverage (if applicable)
    • Details of the offense that triggered the SR22 requirement (court documents, police reports)
  3. Pay the SR22 Filing Fee:  The insurance company will charge a fee for filing the SR22 certificate with the DMV. This fee can be a one-time cost or a monthly addition to your car insurance premium.
  4. Confirmation and Maintaining Coverage:¬† The insurer will electronically file the SR22 certificate with your state’s DMV. You should receive confirmation from your insurer and potentially from the DMV once the filing is complete. It’s crucial to maintain the minimum required car insurance coverage throughout the SR22 requirement period. Any lapse in coverage could result in a suspended license and potential penalties.
 

You don’t necessarily need to purchase a whole new car insurance policy to obtain SR22 coverage. Many insurers can add the SR22 filing to your existing policy if it meets the minimum liability coverage requirements. The SR22 certificate is filed electronically with the DMV by your insurance company. You typically won’t receive a physical SR22 document yourself.

Keeping Your SR22 Active: Maintaining Compliance

Once you have the SR22 requirement, it’s important to maintain compliance throughout the¬†designated period set by your state. Here’s how to ensure you stay on track:

Maintain Minimum Coverage: Always uphold the state’s minimum required liability insurance coverage on your vehicle. A lapse in coverage can be reported to the DMV by your insurer, potentially leading to a suspended license and a restart of the SR22 requirement clock.

Renew Your Insurance on Time: Make timely payments and maintain continuous auto insurance coverage throughout the SR22 requirement period.

Communicate with Your Insurer: If you plan to switch car insurance companies during the SR22 requirement, notify your current insurer beforehand to ensure a smooth transition in SR22 filing with the new provider.

Image Credit: Pixabay

The Light at the End of the Tunnel: When Does the SR22 Requirement End?

The duration of the SR22 requirement varies by state and depends on the severity of the offense that triggered it. It typically falls within a range of 3 to 5 years.

Consult Your Court Order: The paperwork from your court hearing related to the offense should specify the SR22 requirement duration.

Contact Your State’s DMV:¬†Your state’s Department of Motor Vehicles website¬†or a direct call to their office can provide the most accurate information regarding the SR22 requirement duration in your specific situation.

 

Once the designated period is over, your SR22 requirement will automatically expire.  Your insurance company will typically notify the DMV electronically, and you no longer need to maintain an SR22 filing.

  • Don’t assume the SR22 requirement has ended automatically. Proactively confirm the end date with your state’s DMV to avoid any potential complications.
  • Maintain a good driving record during the SR22 requirement period. This demonstrates responsibility to your insurer, potentially leading to¬†lower auto insurance¬†premiums once the SR22 is lifted.