SR-22 Explained

Although the SR22 document is often referred to as SR-22 insurance, it is not an auto insurance policy. If you’re required to provide an SR22 or an FR-44 (in Florida or Virginia), you should read this article in order to understand what it means and how it works.

What is an SR-22?

This is a form submitted by your auto insurance company, stating that you meet the minimum requirements for state auto liability insurance. This is insurance that covers you if you are required to pay for medical expenses or property damages to someone else because of an auto accident wherein you were at fault.

It’s important to understand that an SR-22 is not liability insurance. It is merely a document that proves you have the requisite auto insurance as required by the state.

Do You Need an SR-22?

Not everyone is required to have an SR-22 and laws vary in different states. Your insurance company may have to file an SR-22 with the state department of motor vehicles (DMV) for any of the following reasons:

  • You have been convicted of driving under the influence (DUI) or whilst intoxicated
  • You have committed serious traffic offenses
  • You have numerous repeat traffic offenses
  • You are at fault in an accident and don’t have insurance
  • Your license has been suspended or revoked

Given the nature of SR-22 requirements, your insurer will probably add a surcharge to your auto insurance policy.

How long does an SR-22 last?

Not all states have the same SR-22 requirements but generally, you’ll need to observe the following:

  • You will probably need an SR-22 proving that you have been continuously insured for a period of about 3-years. This may differ, depending on the state.
  • If your auto insurance lapses or expires during the mandated period, your insurer is required to notify the state.
  • Your license may be suspended if don’t comply with state SR-22 requirements
  • Once you have completed the time required by the state in terms of your SR-22 commitments, your obligation is lifted.
Do You need an SR-22 if you don’t own a car?

If you are required to file an SR-22, it may also be relevant even if you don’t own a car. If you drive a hire car or borrow a car, you will need liability insurance. This means that an SR-22 could be relevant if your state requires this of you.

How do you get an SR-22?

You can contact any auto insurer and ask them to assist you with SR-22 insurance. It will probably be quite expensive as this implies that you are a high-risk client. The insurer will sell you the necessary insurance in order for you to comply with state SR-22 regulations and then submit the required documentation to the DMV.

How much does an SR-22 cost?

The cost of filing an SR-22 will depend on the insurance company and state filing fees. Your insurance premium will probably be higher than most other people, due to your increased risk profile. You can also expect to pay around $25 in additional fees.