SR-22 (The “SR” stands for “safety responsibility”) is a document that verifies that someone has automobile insurance. The SR-22 is prepared by an insurance company and then filed (by the insurance company) with the department of motor vehicles (DMV). The SR-22 is not an insurance policy. It is evidence that you have a policy. Many states require an SR-22 filing for drivers that have had a variety of driving related issues. Although the SR-22 laws and processes vary from state to state, they share the common purpose of enforcing mandatory insurance requirements through the monitoring of continuous insurance coverage. In the case of an SR-22, the monitoring is typically performed by the insurance company that is providing the SR-22. If the individual fails to maintain continuous insurance coverage, the insurance company will simply notify the state and the state will take appropriate action against the individual with the SR-22 requirement. Depending on the state that you live in, an SR-22 may be referred to by any of the following descriptions;
Understandably, the SR-22 requirement is a “Red Flag” for insurance companies as individuals with this requirement typically fall outside of the “Good Driver” discount incentives advertised by auto insurance companies. The requirement for an SR-22 in some states does not assume that an individual owns a vehicle, and in this situation a non-owner SR-22 may be required.
Depending on your state of residence, the cost of an SR-22 is the filing fee charged by an insurance company. The amount of the fee varies and is typically below $50. In terms of automobile insurance price, the SR-22 itself does not make your vehicle insurance higher, however the prerequisites for an SR-22 requirement are typically factors that lead to higher automobile insurance costs. In other words it all depends on your driving record and the state that you live in.
An SR-22 filing may be required for driver license reinstatement after a suspension, and, in some states it may also be required as a condition of keeping a license that is not suspended. Regardless of the reason for an SR-22 filing, once the requirement is issued it must be honored for the amount of time required by the state. The length of time that an SR-22 requirement must be fulfilled is defined by the state. In some states an SR-22 filing may be required for 3 years after driver license reinstatement for a DUI conviction. After the 3 years have passed, and if the driver has driven without incidents predefined by the state, the SR-22 requirement may be lifted.
The states listed below do not have an SR-22 requirement, if you are moving from a state that requires an SR-22 to a state that does not, your old state may sill require that you file an SR-22. Depending on the laws in the current state that you live in, this may be appealed or, in some states (Illinois) you may file an affidavit stating you are no longer a resident of the state and are not required to meet the financial responsibility requirements of that state.
Follow the links below to get state specific laws regarding car insurance and SR-22 requirements.
District of Columbia