SR-22 Insurance in Virginia Explained

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  • SR-22 Insurance in Virginia Explained

From Richmond to Alexandria, Williamsburg to Roanoke, all the way to Virginia Beach, there are a variety of experiences for drivers to immerse themselves in, as long as they maintain a legally sufficient Virginia car insurance policy. Residents who travel to destinations across the Old Dominion without an active and adequate Virginia auto insurance policy risk filing for an SR-22.

An SR-22 is a document filed by an insurer on behalf of a high-risk policyholder to verify with the state that the policyholder holds a current and sufficient auto insurance policy. Let’s check out what filing for an SR-22 means for drivers in the Old Dominion, how to find a policy should you have one on file, and everything else you need to know about car insurance with an SR-22 in Virginia.

SR-22 Insurance in Virginia Explained

It’s crucial to understand that an SR-22 in Virginia isn’t a specific type of insurance coverage or policy but rather a form filed by an insurer on behalf of a policyholder to verify with the state that the driver has an active and adequate policy. The form will be mandated by a law or court official following a driver’s license and registration being revoked or suspended due to a serious traffic violation, like driving without insurance, while intoxicated, or otherwise recklessly. Once the driver is ready to reinstate their license or registration, they’ll need an SR-22 on file. 

An SR-22 on file proves to the state that a driver known to make risky decisions regarding their insurance coverage is willing to accept financial responsibility for their insurance premiums and any expenses related to an at-fault accident. 

What Is SR-22 Insurance in Virginia?

SR-22 insurance isn’t a type of auto insurance in Virginia, nor a type of policy, but rather a form insurers file on behalf of a policyholder so they may have their previously suspended license or registration reinstated. This document certifies with the state that the policyholder has an active and adequate auto insurance policy under state law. 

All residents in the Old Dominion must have an auto insurance policy that meets the state’s minimum coverage requirements, or they must legally opt out of the mandatory insurance system by paying the annual $500 uninsured motorist fee. In Virginia, all drivers must have at least $30,000 in bodily injury liability per person, $60,000 in bodily injury liability per accident, $20,000 in property damage liability per accident (30/60/20 liability coverage), $25,000 in uninsured or underinsured motorist bodily injury coverage per person (UMBI/UIMBI), $50,000 in UMBI/UIMBI per accident, and $20,000 in uninsured or underinsured motorist property damage coverage (UMPD/UIMPD0, or 25/50/20 uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage (UM/UIM). Those who finance or lease their vehicles may be legally required to carry comprehensive and collision coverages as a stipulation of their legally binding financing or leasing agreements. 

Failure to maintain the minimum legal amount of coverage or to go about driving uninsured legally can result in severe consequences, like fees, fines, license or registration suspension, or even jail time.

What Are the Virginia SR-22 Insurance Requirements?

The requirements for owner and non-owner SR-22 insurance in Virginia may differ slightly, but typically, all drivers who require SR-22s will need to maintain sufficient coverage and financial responsibility for about three years following the incident. Failure to maintain an active policy with an SR-22 on file can result in a longer SR-22 period. 

The requirements for an SR-22 form can differ based on the severity and frequency of the offense. While drivers have an SR-22, they must have an auto insurance policy with at least 30/60/20 liability coverage and 25/50/20 UM/UIM coverage. If a driver with an SR-22 lets their insurance policy lapse, fails to accept financial responsibility in an at-fault accident, or commits another serious traffic violation that leads to license or registration suspension, the SR-22 period may restart, and the driver will have to have the form on file for another three years, on average. 

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How Long Is an SR-22 Required in Virginia?

Virginia SR-22 laws require high-risk drivers to have the form on file for at least three years following the incident that led to license or registration suspension or revocation. If a driver commits another serious traffic violation or fails to pay their insurance premiums while the document is on their record, the SR-22 period will restart, and the driver will require it for an additional three years. 

How Much Is an SR-22 in Virginia?

High-risk auto insurance in Virginia, especially for those with an SR-22 on file, can be costly, but premiums vary from person to person. While the SR-22 form doesn’t cost much to file, typically about $25 in processing fees, the premiums on an insurance policy for a driver with the form on file can get quite expensive.

The average cost of a full coverage policy in Virginia is about $1,340 annually for a driver with a clean driving record and a stellar insurance history. Drivers with a history of driving uninsured, driving while intoxicated, or driving otherwise recklessly may expect to pay double or triple the average rate.

Generally, premiums differ from driver to driver, policy to policy, and insurer to insurer. When determining a policyholder’s premiums, insurers use unique factors about the driver to assess their risk of filing a claim. Insurers use factors like a driver’s insurance history, driving record, gender, age, and ZIP code, among several other factors, to determine a policyholder’s premiums.

Drivers who pay higher-than-average premiums may have factors working against them that make insurers view them as high-risk drivers. Even though premiums can change every few years, it can be difficult for a driver with a poor insurance history or driving record to get their premiums to fall near the state average rate. Luckily, with some research and a few tricks up your sleeve, lowering your premiums with minimal effort can be possible.

How To Find Cheap SR-22 Insurance in Virginia

The cheapest SR-22 insurance in Virginia is a minimum coverage policy that meets the state’s minimum coverage requirements but doesn’t exceed them. A minimum coverage policy in the Old Dominion is a policy with 30/60/20 liability coverage and 25/50/20 UM/UIM coverage. Since the average full coverage premium in the Old Dominion costs about $1,340 annually, and a minimum coverage policy only has about half the coverage, the average premium on a minimum coverage policy in the state costs about $670 annually. 

While a minimum coverage policy is often the cheapest in the state for any driver, it isn’t always the safest. While it’s always a wise idea to have a policy with premiums you can afford, a full coverage policy is often worth the investment.

With a minimum coverage policy in Virginia, the policyholder will recover minimal benefits from their own policy. Liability coverage will cover the victim’s expenses in an accident caused by the policyholder. UM/UIM coverage will cover the policyholder’s expenses should they be the victim in an accident caused by an uninsured driver or a driver with insufficient liability coverage for the policyholder’s expenses. That means in the event of any other accident scenario, the policyholder is on the hook for all the expenses that exceed their policy limit or expenses for which they don’t have coverage. 

While a full coverage policy can get expensive, especially for a high-risk driver, the safety it provides is often worth the price. Plus, many of the state’s top insurers offer lower-than-average base rates for all types of drivers, and various stackable discounts policyholders can use to lower their premiums.

Discounts are an excellent way to lower one’s premiums without sacrificing coverage. Many insurers offer discounts that are either criteria-based or enrollment-based. While criteria-based discounts only require policyholders to meet a set of standards, enrollment-based discounts require policyholders to get a bit more involved in their savings. Some criteria-based discounts many insurers offer are a student discount, a multi-car discount, a bundling discount, and even an anti-theft device discount.

Insurers may offer enrollment-based discounts that require the policyholder to participate in a program to earn savings on their premiums. Many insurers offer a usage-based discount for those who consent to use a telematics device to track and share their safe driving choices with their insurer. Other insurers may offer a pay-per-mile discount for those who drive less than the national average of 12,000 miles annually.

How To Get SR-22 Insurance Quotes in Virginia

If you’re searching for insurance with an SR-22 in Virginia that costs a reasonable amount, the best way to see your options is to get and compare quotes online. By getting and comparing quotes, drivers can tailor their policies to their specific needs and select the one that makes the most sense for their lifestyle and budget.

Luckily, you’ve come to the right place for quotes. Here at Clovered, we have a free quoting tool you can use to find the right policy for you in minutes. If you’d like to chat with 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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