Drivers who find themselves needing non-owner SR-22 insurance may be unfamiliar with what that means, especially if it’s their first time needing this type of insurance. Whatever the reason might be, we can help you navigate your way through the sometimes confusing world of non-owner SR-22 insurance.
What Is Non-owner SR-22 Insurance and Who Needs It?
Non-owner insurance policy is car insurance for drivers who don’t have a car. So who needs non-owner insurance? It turns out there are a few situations in which you might need this plan, including:
- You do drive, but you don’t own a car.
- You don’t have a car, but you are about to get one. If you’re between vehicles, non-owner insurance can be a more affordable way to bridge the gap between vehicle ownership so that you don’t have a lapse in your coverage.
- You need an SR-22. An SR-22 is a certificate that shows you have car insurance.
That last situation generally comes into play when a driver has been charged with a violation, such as a DUI, DWI, or reckless driving. A non-owner SR-22 plan is meant for drivers who are required to carry car insurance but don’t own a car or live with someone who owns a car.
However, anyone can apply for non-owner SR-22 insurance. Someone might choose to apply for non-owner SR-22 insurance because they plan on being without a vehicle for some time but want to avoid having a gap between their insurance plans. Starting an entirely new insurance plan comes at a cost, so the SR-22 certificate may be a more affordable option for drivers who plan on returning to a liability, collision, and/or comprehensive insurance plan at a later date.
If you don’t have a car and don’t plan on driving a car — whether due to a suspended driver’s license or personal choice — but are still being required to get car insurance, then a non-owner SR-22 insurance plan could be the best option for you. This type of insurance is often more affordable than typical minimum insurance coverage in your state, allowing you to fulfill the court’s need for an SR-22 certificate without having to spend money on insurance for a car you don’t have.
What Does Non-owner SR-22 Insurance Cover?
Non-owner SR-22 insurance is a more specialized version of liability insurance. Liability insurance is the minimum level of insurance a driver needs to operate a motor vehicle legally in most states. Non-driver insurance generally will only include coverage for property damage and bodily injury liability. The driver with non-owner SR-22 insurance is covered by liability or non-owner insurance.
Something else to note about non-owner SR-22 insurance is that it’s not attached to any specific vehicle the policyholder chooses to drive. The insurance is attached to the driver themselves. So, no matter which vehicle a driver operates, damages dealt to another driver or property owner will generally be covered. If a driver with SR-22 insurance is driving a vehicle covered by another insurance plan — whether the vehicle belongs to someone the driver knows or it’s a rental — the primary insurance will cover costs before the SR-22 insurance plan comes into play.
How Do I Get Non-owner SR-22 Insurance?
Every state has its own set of requirements for SR-22 insurance. If you live in Florida or Virginia, you might have to get an FR-44 instead of an SR-22, which means that you’ll need to get higher liability coverage than the state minimum. Generally, both the SR-22 and FR-44 last for three years, though you may be required to hold them for up to five years. If a driver is being required to get an SR-22 but doesn’t know how long they will need it, they should reach out to their state and court to see how long they need to carry it.
Once you have the information you need, finding non-owner SR-22 insurance is much like finding any car insurance. The driver seeking an SR-22 plan will be reaching out to insurance companies to get quotes to see how much their plan will cost for their situation. However, the uncommon needs of a driver seeking SR-22 insurance may require them to take a couple of extra steps to find a plan that offers what they need and for a price that they can accept.
How Much Does Non-owner SR-22 Insurance Cost?
It can be difficult to estimate a range for non-owner SR-22 insurance, as many factors come into play when an insurance company decides on a rate for a driver. Some of the factors that generally influence the cost of someone’s insurance include their age, credit score, and driving history. Location also plays a large role in your non-owner SR-22 insurance plan’s cost.
Due to the perceived higher risk of providing insurance to someone who has been ordered to acquire a non-owner SR-22 insurance plan, a driver looking for one may have to turn to a company that specializes in insuring high-risk cases. Thus, it may not be fruitful to seek non-owner SR-22 insurance through the “big name” insurers, such as Allstate and Progressive. That being said, it never hurts to ask an insurance company if they offer it.
A driver needing this type of insurance may have better luck with smaller insurance companies, such as The General, National General, or SafeAuto, to name a few examples.
As with any type of insurance, the easiest way to ensure you’re getting the best rate available to you and your situation is by getting quotes from insurance companies and comparing them to each other. Getting insurance quotes is free and doesn’t affect your credit score, so be sure to get as many as you can to make yourself comfortable with a plan’s rates.
It should be noted that filing for an SR-22 also has a fee that varies depending on the state the driver lives in. However, the fees generally range from $15 up to $25.
At FIXD, our mission is to make car ownership as simple, easy, and affordable as possible. Our research team utilizes the latest automotive data and insights to create tools and resources that help drivers get peace of mind and save money over the life of their car.