What Is SR22 Insurance?

By Carly Kullman

  • Overview

    SR22 insurance is really a misnomer that many people believe is a type of insurance. Rather, SR22 insurance is a type of filing that is required under certain circumstances by the State when mandatory automobile insurance coverage is not met.
  • Driving Uninsured

    If your state requires that you have mandatory auto insurance and you do not meet the minimum auto insurance coverage, your car could be towed and you could be arrested. In addition, your driver's license would be suspended or possibly revoked. Usually within weeks of the accident or traffic violation, the Secretary of State will notify you by mail that your license has been suspended for failure to comply with mandatory auto insurance laws and the only way to reverse the suspension is to carry SR22 insurance.
  • Definition

    SR22 insurance is not valid insurance but a certificate that is filed with the Department of Motor Vehicles to state that you are in compliance with the mandatory auto insurance coverage laws of your state. This certificate filed shows the state that you have proof of financial responsibility, which is a requirement of keeping your driver's license in an active status. An SR22 insurance filing is only mandatory when a person has been found driving without auto insurance or without the proper amount of auto insurance coverage required by law.


  • How it Works

    When you receive a letter or notice that your driver's license is suspended, you will need to go to an auto insurance provider that offers SR22 insurance. The auto insurance company will then give you options to purchasing auto coverage. In many instances, drivers will choose the insurance option that provides them with minimum auto insurance coverage. When the insurance is purchased and paid for, usually required at that time, the auto insurance company will provide temporary insurance cards. In addition, the insurance company will complete the necessary form, the SR22 Certificate, and file it with the Secretary of State as a way of proving your financial responsibility. After the Secretary of State receives your proof of financial responsibility, you will receive notice letting you that you are in compliance with the terms of the mandatory auto insurance coverage law. From there your driver's license will be reinstated you you can legally drive again.
  • Types of SR22 Insurance

    There are also several different options for filing for SR22 insurance. If you do not own a car, you can still fulfill the terms of financial responsibility by getting an Operator's Certificate. This means that you do not own a car at this time but you would still like to carry the minimum amount of auto insurance. If you happened to drive another vehicle, you would be covered under your own insurance. If you do own a car, you would be covered under a Owner's Certificate, which basically is the same as carrying regular car insurance. With both options, the auto insurance company files the SR22 Certificate which proves financial responsibility to the Secretary of State.
  • How Long Will I Need SR22 Insurance?

    The length of time that you may be required to carry SR22 insurance will vary depending on state law as well as the offense of the driver. If you have been caught driving without auto insurance previously, you may be required to carry proof of financial responsibility for a longer period of time. In most instances the letter you receive from the Secretary of State will inform you of the length of time that you will be required to have SR22 insurance. If you decide to cancel your SR22 insurance, your insuring company must notify the Secretary of State immediately. At that time your proof of financial responsibility will cease immediately and your driver's license will be suspended. The length of time that you will need to carry the SR22 insurance will vary depending on the laws of your state. If you are caught driving without auto insurance again then you will have to carry the SR22 auto insurance for a longer period of time. After the requirements for SR22 insurance are met, you will be eligible to purchase regular auto insurance without the SR22 filing requirement.
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