SR-22 Insurance in Alabama Explained

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  • SR-22 Insurance in Alabama Explained

Whether you’re heading to Montgomery to take a look at the historical sites, Gulf Shores for a beach getaway, or Tuscaloosa to cheer on the Crimson tide, wherever you go in the Heart of Dixie, you must maintain a legally adequate car insurance policy. Those that fail to maintain sufficient coverage or drive recklessly may risk filing for an SR-22.

An SR-22 is a form filed by an insurer on behalf of a policyholder to certify with the state the policyholder has an active and sufficient auto insurance policy in Alabama. Uninsured drivers or those who drive while intoxicated are at the highest risk of filing for an SR-22.

Let’s take a look at what filing for an SR-22 means in the Heart of Dixie, how to find a policy should you require the form, and other useful information about SR-22s in Alabama.

SR-22 Insurance in Alabama Explained

It’s important to note that an SR-22 isn’t a type of auto insurance in Alabama, nor is it a specific coverage, but rather a form filed by an insurer on behalf of a policyholder to certify with the state the policyholder has an active and adequate car insurance policy. A court or law official will mandate this form to a driver after a serious traffic violation, like driving without insurance or while intoxicated, resulting in a license or registration suspension. Once the driver reinstates their license or registration, they’ll need the SR-22 to bind an insurance policy.

An SR-22 proves to the state that a high-risk driver with a poor driving record now has an active and sufficient policy, is willing to maintain financial responsibility for their premiums, and can pay any expenses related to an at-fault accident. This document verifies that high-risk drivers accept responsibility for any damage they cause.

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What Is SR-22 Insurance Alabama?

An SR-22 in Alabama isn’t a type of insurance, nor is it a type of coverage. Instead, it’s a document an insurer files on behalf of a policyholder to verify with the state that the insured has an active and adequate car insurance policy under state law. Drivers who have committed serious traffic violations like driving without insurance or driving while intoxicated are the most likely to require this form.

All drivers with vehicles registered in the Heart of Dixie must carry the legal minimum amount of auto insurance required by state law. The law maintains drivers must have an auto insurance policy with at least $25,000 in bodily injury liability per person, $50,000 in bodily injury liability per accident, and $25,000 in property damage liability per accident. Those who lease or finance their vehicles may be legally required to carry collision and comprehensive coverages as a part of their legally binding contract. 

Failure to maintain the legal minimum coverage can result in serious legal penalties, like fines, license and registration suspension, vehicle impoundment, or even jail time. 

What Are the Alabama SR-22 Requirements?

Not everyone will require SR-22 auto insurance in Alabama. Drivers who need this form on their record will have been told by a court or law official following a serious traffic infraction and, in most cases, the reinstatement of a suspended license or registration. 

Those with an SR-22 on file may require it for between one and three years, depending on the severity of the offense. While drivers have an active SR-22, they must maintain an auto insurance policy with at least 25/50/25 liability coverage. If a driver has an SR-22 on file and lets their insurance policy lapse, fails to pay their premiums, or commits another serious traffic violation leading to license or registration suspension, the clock will restart, and the driver will have to maintain the SR-22 for another one to three years.

How Much Is SR-22 Insurance in Alabama?

The average cost of an insurance policy with an SR-22 will differ based on the driver. For example, non-owner SR-22 insurance in Alabama may be more expensive than that for a driver who owns their vehicle. It’s also important to keep in mind that the SR-22 itself doesn’t cost much, as it’s typically about $25 to file the form. It’s the premiums on a policy for a driver with an active SR-22 that can get expensive.

The average cost of a full coverage policy in Alabama is about $1,670 annually for a driver with a clean record. Drivers with a history of serious traffic violations or an SR-22 on file may expect to pay double or triple the average premium. 

Premiums are subjective to each driver, as insurers use factors unique to each policyholder when determining premiums. Insurers use these factors to assess the risk of a policyholder making a claim; the higher the risk, the higher the premium. Some factors insurers may use when determining premiums are age, gender, ZIP code, driving history, and insurance history, among several other factors.

Those quoted at a higher-than-average premium may have factors that make insurers categorize them as high-risk drivers. While premiums ebb and flow with time, it can be challenging for a driver with a poor driving or insurance record to get their premiums down to the ballpark of the state average.

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How To Find Cheap SR-22 Insurance in Alabama

The cheapest SR-22 insurance in Alabama will be a minimum coverage policy that only meets the state’s requirements and doesn’t exceed them. A minimum coverage policy with only 25/50/25 liability coverage will be the cheapest policy for every driver, not just those with an SR-22, as it contains much less coverage than a full coverage policy, so the premiums are much less. The average premium for a minimum coverage policy for a driver with a clean record in the Heart of Dixie may be around $835 annually.

While a minimum coverage policy is often the cheapest policy in the state, it won’t provide as much protection as a full coverage policy. It’s always best to have a policy within your budget, but a full coverage policy is often worth the investment in higher premiums.

With a liability-only policy, only the victim in an accident caused by the at-fault policyholder is protected up to the policyholder’s coverage limit. That means, in the event of an accident, the policyholder is on the hook for any of the victim’s expenses that exceed their policy limit, plus the full total of their own expenses, as liability coverage doesn’t protect the policyholder.

A full coverage policy can be expensive, especially for a high-risk driver, but its broad range of protection is often worth the investment. Many of the state’s top insurers offer lower-than-average base rates for drivers of all backgrounds and have plenty of discounts policyholders can stack to further reduce their premiums. 

Discounts are a great way to lower one’s premiums without sacrificing coverage. Many insurers offer discounts that fall into two categories: criteria-based and enrollment-based. Some criteria-based discounts may be a student discount for young drivers who earn good grades in school, a bundling discount for those who bundle home and auto insurance with the same insurer, and a multi-car discount for those who insure multiple cars on one policy.

Some insurers offer enrollment-based discounts, which require the policyholder to participate in a program to earn significant savings on their premium. Insurers may offer a pay-per-mile discount for those who drive under the national average of 12,000 miles annually.

Many insurers now offer a usage-based discount, which requires a policyholder to use a telematics device to track and send their driving data to their insurer to receive a discount based on their safe driving habits. Enrollment-based discounts often offer more significant savings than criteria-based discounts, with some programs boasting over 20% off premiums. 

How To Get a Car Insurance Quote in Alabama

Car insurance for high-risk drivers can be tough to find, but not impossible. The best way to find a policy that best suits your needs is to get and compare quotes online. By getting and comparing quotes online, drivers can tailor policies to their standards and select the one that makes the most sense for their safety and budget.

Lucky for you, you’ve come to the right place for quotes. Here at Clovered, quoting is our specialty. We offer a free quoting tool you can use to find the right policy for you in minutes. If you prefer to speak to someone about your quote, you can contact one of our licensed agents at 833-255-4117 or

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The editorial content on Clovered’s website is meant to be informational material and should not be considered legal advice.

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