If your record shows there are any driving or other offenses that might make you a higher risk, you may be required to get SR-22 insurance. This means is that you’ll need to have your insurance provider file an SR-22 form. While SR-22 isn’t a type of insurance, different companies will charge higher or lower average premiums for drivers who need an SR-22. Some companies don’t file them, meaning you’ll have to switch if you want to legally get car insurance. Here’s everything you need to know about getting cheap SR-22 insurance in Texas.
What Is SR-22 Insurance in Texas?
SR-22 is not an insurance coverage type, such as liability coverage; it is a certificate that only an insurance company can file for you. If a court or the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles requires you to get an SR-22, it will stay on your record for two years until you can apply to have it removed. The point of the form is to confirm you are maintaining the necessary coverage, which is why SR-22s and similar forms are often called “proof of financial responsibility.”
When it comes to car insurance, the average cost in Texas is about 26.8% higher than the national average. No matter where you live, situations that require you to need an SR-22 certificate will almost always lead to higher insurance premiums, which can add up to a lot in Texas. If your record shows a serious conviction, you might have to get something beyond standard liability coverage, leading to an even bigger insurance cost. In any case, insurance policies taken along with a new SR-22 are generally what is meant by “SR-22 insurance.”
Put simply, an SR-22 is a part of getting insurance reinstated after a serious issue like a criminal conviction. It’s almost inevitable that your insurance cost will rise after filing one. As you drive responsibly, maintain the SR-22 for the required number of years (usually two) until you can have it revoked. Then you can switch to a more affordable insurance policy.
Who Has the Cheapest SR-22 Liability Insurance in Texas?
Having to get an SR-22 filed in Texas might mean changing to a company that can file the documents and that won’t raise your rates too much. Looking at average policy coverage costs for Texas drivers, the insurance companies with the cheapest average annual cost after filing an SR-22 are:
- Farmers: $621
- USAA: $655
- Esurance: $656
- State Farm: $872
- AAA: $880
- Mercury: $924
- Geico: $925
- Allstate: $958
- Nationwide: $1,293
- The General: $1,481
Farmers, USAA, and Esurance are definite winners, with relatively close average annual costs for standard coverage after an SR-22. The actual fee to file the SR-22 is usually only around $25, but the important part is that your insurance will cost more per month. It’s a good idea to shop around at several companies to see which can offer the best insurance rates. While Farmers has the lowest cost on average in this case, another company could be better for you.
Is SR-22 Insurance More Expensive If You Only Get Minimum Liability?
Although any issues on your driving record can affect insurance premiums, one of the biggest factors is what kind of coverage you get. Some people wonder how expensive insurance will be after filing an SR-22 if they are only getting minimum liability coverage.
For the vast majority of drivers, the Texas DOT requires a minimum liability car insurance coverage of $30,000 per injured person in an accident, $60,000 total per accident, and $25,000 of property damage per accident. Liability coverage is usually referred to in plans with three numbers, so the Texas minimum liability plan would be 30/60/25. The average cost of 30/60/25 coverage in Texas is $782 per year, while Farmers, USAA, and Esurance all have average costs of insurance after an SR-22 in the $600 range.
It’s fair to say that if you pick the right company and the offense on your record isn’t too serious, you could have a similar or even slightly cheaper insurance premium if you switch to the right company for minimum liability. In general, though, SR-22 forms come from serious incidents like a DUI or leaving the scene of an accident. Because of their severity, it’s better to financially plan for an insurance cost increase.
Who Has the Cheapest Non-Owner SR-22 Insurance in Texas?
If you won’t have a car of your own for a while but would like to still be able to drive, you could get non-owner car insurance. This type of insurance usually requires an SR-22 and costs less than standard coverage. You need either standard car-owner liability or non-owner liability insurance to rent or borrow cars in case you’re involved in any at-fault accidents or driving infractions. You could also borrow a car from someone with uninsured motorist protection, as long as you know and respect the limits of their policy.
The average cost of non-owner car insurance in Texas is $624 per year, but some companies offer cheaper average rates for drivers filing an SR-22. The average annual rates for most affordable companies for non-owner car insurance in Texas after an SR-22 are:
- State Farm: $359
- USAA: $375
- Geico: $795
- Nationwide: $968
Choosing State Farm or USAA non-owner coverage in Texas could save you a lot of money while you wait for an SR-22 to expire. This option could be worth it if your car was totaled or you can’t own or regularly drive anyway. Keep in mind that there are some limitations, such as USAA non-owner coverage only applying to members of the military, veterans, and their families.
When choosing the right kind of car insurance in Texas, price is normally only one factor, and choosing the coverage and company that works best for you in the long term is also important. However, after infractions that require an SR-22, the price of your regular car-owner liability insurance is probably going to go up. You may want to change to a different provider who provides lower average rates in that situation or even hold off on owning a car for a while and get non-owner insurance.
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.