Getting an SR-22 is fairly straightforward when you own a car. You talk to your insurance company, shop around for quotes, and find the best SR-22 car insurance that works for you.
But what about when you don’t own a car? On the one hand, you have a requirement by the state to carry SR-22 insurance. On the other hand, you can only get car insurance if you own a car, right?
Fortunately, there’s a solution: non-owners SR-22 car insurance. Keep reading to find out everything you need to know about SR-22 insurance for people who do not own a vehicle.
Do I Need an SR-22 if I Don’t Own a Car?
Yes. If you’ve been ordered to file an SR-22, then you’ll need to comply with the filing requirements, whether or not you own or lease a car. While you won’t be able to get conventional SR-22 insurance — also known as an owner SR-22 certificate — you can get non-owners SR-22 car insurance with a non-owner certificate.
What is Non-Owners Insurance?
Most insurance companies offer non-owner insurance for drivers who don’t own a car but drive a lot. Examples are people who rent cars frequently or who borrow vehicles often. Even drivers who don’t need SR-22 insurance may maintain a non-owners policy to cover them in case the owner doesn’t have adequate insurance.
How Do I Get Non-Owners SR-22 Car Insurance?
The first step is to shop around for non-owner SR-22 car insurance quotes. Look for a company that works with several car insurance providers so that you can get a list of quotes and make the best decision.
As you’re shopping around, be sure to mention that you need non-owner SR-22 car insurance. Many insurance companies can provide it, but it’s less common than conventional SR-22 insurance, and some companies won’t want to cover drivers who need SR-22 insurance. That’s we recommend starting with insurance companies that specialize in SR-22 and other insurance for high-risk drivers.
Once you have your non-owner SR-22 car insurance policy in place, your insurance company will file the SR-22 form, and you’ll be in compliance with your SR-22 requirements.
You’re now ready to drive! Your SR-22 non-owners car insurance will cover you when you’re borrowing someone’s car, a rental car, or any car at all.
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Can I Drive a Commercial Vehicle with Non-Owners SR-22 Car Insurance?
If you drive a commercial vehicle for work, then your non-owners SR-22 car insurance will cover your use of that vehicle, as well as any other car you drive.
However, if you need a commercial driver’s license (CDL) to drive your work vehicle, then you may not be able to use it until your SR-22 filing period is over. While a suspended personal driver’s license can be returned when you file an SR-22 and pay the required fines, most states will suspend a commercial driver’s license for much longer if you’re charged with a DUI or a serious at-fault accident. Once you remove your SR-22 insurance, you’ll be able to re-apply for your CDL.
What if I Need an Ignition Interlock Device?
If you were ordered to file an SR-22 due to a DUI incident, you may have been ordered to install an ignition interlock device (IID) in your car as well. An IID is a special breathalyzer that’s installed and connected to your car’s ignition system. Before starting the car, you’ll need to breathe into the IID to show that you haven’t been drinking.
If you don’t own a car but need an IID in addition to an SR-22, you’re still only permitted to operate a vehicle with an IID. Your best option is to talk to your significant other or a close friend or family member and ask them if they’d be willing to install an IID in their car so that you can drive. Note that everyone needs to blow into the IID once it’s installed since there’s no way for the IID to tell whether it’s you or someone else who wants to start the car.
Once you have your non-owner SR-22 insurance active and the IID installed, you can start driving again.
How Long Do I Have to Keep My Non-Owner’s SR-22 Car Insurance?
Just like with conventional SR-22 insurance, you’ll need to keep your non-owner SR-22 insurance active for as long as required — typically, three years. This applies whether you plan to drive or not.
If you let your insurance lapse, the insurance company will report the violation to your state DMV, and you can face even more fines and license suspension. You’ll also reset the clock on the time required to carry SR-22 insurance.
Do I Need SR-22 Non-Owners Insurance if I Buy a Car?
Non-owners SR-22 insurance only covers drivers who don’t own a car. If you do end up buying or leasing a car later, then you’ll need to call your insurance company and tell them you need owner’s SR-22 insurance.
When you switch from non-owners to owner’s SR-22 insurance, make sure to overlap coverage for at least a few days. That way, you can be sure that there won’t be any gaps in coverage.
Note that an owner SR-22 certificate will only cover you while you’re driving your new car. If you still plan on borrowing other people’s cars, or if you need to drive a vehicle for work, then you should get an owner-operator SR-22 certificate. This is the most flexible form of SR-22 car insurance and will cover you while you’re driving any car.
Keep in mind that if you only have an owner SR-22 certificate and are driving someone else’s car, the penalties for getting caught are the same as if you were driving with no insurance at all.
Finally, make sure you have all the insurance coverage you need with your new car. While an SR-22 certificate is required only for liability insurance, most leasing and financing companies contractually require you to have collision and comprehensive coverage on your car until you pay it off. Talk to your SR-22 insurance company, which can help you save money by bundling your policies.
Even Non-Owners Need SR-22 Insurance
When you’re required to get SR-22 insurance, you need to do so as quickly as possible, whether or not you own a car. SR-22 Advisers have been helping high-risk drivers around the country get the SR-22 insurance they need at an affordable price. All it takes is a few minutes for an online quote from our partners for non-owners SR-22 car insurance.