If you’ve been convicted of a serious traffic offense, you might be required to file for SR-22 insurance in Illinois. SR-22 isn’t a type of insurance policy. Instead, it’s a form that your insurance company must file with the state to prove that you have sufficient vehicle insurance coverage. This certificate is known as an SR or safety responsibility form. It may also be referred to as a Certificate of Responsibility. Either way, SR-22 insurance is required to reinstate your driving privileges if your driver’s license has been suspended or revoked in Illinois.
An SR-22 is a certificate issued by the Illinois Driver Services Department on your behalf to show that you have sufficient automobile insurance in Illinois. In Illinois, if you’ve been convicted of a severe driving infraction, like a DUI, you must submit SR-22 forms to have your license reinstated.
What Is SR-22 Insurance in Illinois?
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SR-22 insurance is an electronic or paper certificate from an insurance company that verifies you have current auto insurance coverage and that it fulfills the minimum liability requirements of Illinois. Illinois requires an SR-22 for at-risk drivers. If your SR-22 insurance expires, your insurance company must notify the Illinois Driver Services Department, which results in the immediate suspension of your driver’s license.
If you move to another state, you can submit an affidavit to waive the requirement of filing an SR-22. However, because most states have similar laws, you’ll probably need SR-22 insurance in your new home as well.
Who Is Considered an At-Risk Driver in Illinois?
At-risk drivers can have a multitude of offenses that may require them to file an SR-22; these include:
- A traffic violation that is considered very serious, such as a DUI
- Multiple minor traffic infringements, such as speeding or failing to stop at red lights
- Three or more times driving without insurance
- Being at fault in an accident without having the required automobile insurance
- If you were to blame for an accident but did not make payments as agreed
- Nonpayment of child support
- Failure to keep an earlier SR-22 for three years
- Excessive fare evasion on tollways
How Do You Get SR-22 Insurance in Illinois?
In Illinois, obtaining SR-22 insurance is comparable to buying standard automobile insurance. Because your driver’s license has been suspended or revoked due to a serious traffic violation, your insurance may also have been canceled. You’ll want to check with your insurance company to determine whether you still have insurance coverage or not.
If your insurance company did not cancel your policy, you might be able to add an SR-22 by simply contacting your current insurance agent. You will need to see if they offer SR-22 insurance, as not all insurance companies offer this form. Here are the steps to getting SR-22 insurance in Illinois:
Contact Your Current Insurance Agent or Find Another Authorized Agent
When purchasing a new policy in person, by phone, or online, you should be able to select that an SR-22 is required. Not all Illinois insurance providers offer SR-22 coverage, so you may need to spend some time shopping around for an agent who does.
Pay the required filing fee for the SR-22
Your insurance company will likely charge a flat fee between $15 to $50 to file an SR-22 form on your behalf.
File Proof of Insurance
The SR-22 form is submitted to the Illinois Department of State by your new insurance company when you get new auto insurance in Illinois. You can’t do it yourself. Your driver’s license and automobile registration will be reactivated once you’ve completed the application, paid the fees, and filed proof of insurance. This process might take 30 days.
If you’re eligible for an SR-22, the Illinois Driver Services Department will check to see if your form has been received to drive again. You can verify this by calling 217-782-3720 with your driver’s license and Social Security numbers. Now that your license has been reinstated, you may drive again. You don’t have to wait for any paperwork if you’ve verified your reinstatement.
SR-22 insurance is required in Illinois for three years, and it’s a good idea to renew it annually at least 45 days before it expires. If you don’t renew your insurance 15 days before it runs out, your insurance agent is required by law to notify the state. When your policy has ended, your license and registration will be immediately suspended, and you’ll need to start the reinstatement procedure from the beginning. After three years, you may cancel your SR-22 insurance and obtain cheaper rates on standard vehicle insurance.
How Much Is SR-22 Insurance in Illinois?
Unfortunately, if you need an SR-22, your rates will be much higher. The high price isn’t only due to the form filing; being forced to carry SR-22 indicates that you’re a risky driver, making it unlikely to discover a truly cost-effective solution. If you have a recent DUI that requires you to file SR-22 insurance, you can expect to pay 50% to 80% higher rates for the same insurance. For example, Progressive Insurance proposed a sample driver with an annual price of $872. That amount increased to $1,005 after adding a required SR-22.
Are There Any Alternatives To SR-22 Insurance?
In Illinois, there are alternative options for replacing an SR-22 that are more expensive. You are still required to maintain the minimum auto insurance requirements, but you may put up $70,000 in cash, a real estate bond, surety bond, or securities as a guarantee.
What Is Non-Owner SR-22 Insurance?
If the cost of SR-22 insurance is prohibitively high and you don’t need to drive a specific vehicle (or own one), non-owner coverage may be an alternative. Non-owner SR-22 insurance is less expensive since it only covers liability and protects you while driving another person’s car if you use it lightly. To qualify for non-owner SR-22 insurance, you cannot own a vehicle or use the vehicle of anyone who lives with you. If you currently own a vehicle, you can sell it in order to qualify for non-owner SR-22 insurance in Illinois.
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