Cheapest SR-22 Insurance In California For 2024

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Updated: 22 March 2024
Written by
Cara Carlone
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SR-22 insurance is proof of financial responsibility that some drivers are required by the state to provide after a serious violation, such as a DUI or reckless driving. In California, SR-22s can be added to your car insurance policy, but at an additional cost. In my experience in the insurance industry, I’ve seen these increases range from minimal to significant.

I’ve also witnessed companies decline to write policies for those needing SR-22s. It can be time-consuming to sift through company eligibility guidelines and price points to determine what companies are best for you. Fortunately, I’ve done the research so you don’t have to.

In this article, I have narrowed down the top insurance companies in California that will write SR-22 insurance and the average prices of each. While the individual costs of a policy may vary depending on your specifics, this information should point you in the right direction. Keep reading to learn all about SR-22 insurance in California.

Our Methodology

To find the best rates for drivers requiring an SR-22, we based our quotes on drivers with serious violations, such as DUI or reckless driving. We quoted a 2017 Toyota Camry LE with full coverage for a 30-year-old male with average credit. Remember that rates may vary depending on your specifics, such as your location, driving record, and prior insurance history.

Cheapest SR-22 Insurance Companies in California

The top three cheapest SR-22  insurance companies in California with liability only are as follows:

  • Mercury- $803 Annually
  • GEICO- $1,034 Annually
  • Progressive- $1,047 Annually

Cheapest SR-22 Insurance Policies With a DUI (Liability Only)

Company Annual Premium
Mercury $803
GEICO $1,034
Progressive $1,047
Farmers $1,134
Capital Insurance Group $1,188
Travelers $1,211
Kemper $1,273

Cheapest SR-22 Insurance With Full Coverage

For those needing more than liability-only coverage, here are the three cheapest SR-22 insurance policies in California for full coverage:

  • National General- $1,292 Annually
  • Mercury- $2,017 Annually
  • Progressive- $2,551 Annually

Cheapest SR-22 Insurance Policies With a DUI (Full Coverage)

Company Annual Premium
National General $1,292
Mercury $2,017
Progressive $2,551
Geico $2,670
Farmers $2,933
Travelers $3,348
Kemper $3,351
Chubb $3,962
Nationwide $3,990

What is SR-22 Insurance?

Despite its name, SR-22 insurance is not a type of insurance policy. Rather, it is a certificate that your insurance company files on your behalf to prove that you carry the required insurance limits required by the state. The state often requires an SR-22 after a driver has been convicted of a serious violation, such as a license suspension, DUI, or reckless driving.

Because of this, insurance companies charge more premiums for those needing SR-22s, as they are considered high-risk drivers. If you are required to have an SR-22 and you fail to provide one to the state, they can revoke your driving privileges. Therefore, it’s imperative to comply.

What is SR-22a Insurance

In some states, an SR-22a is required in lieu of a standard SR-22. It is often reserved for drivers who have repeatedly violated the financial responsibility laws or for more serious citations. Missouri, Georgia, and Texas are the states that may request this form.

Cheapest Non-Owner SR-22 Insurance Companies in California

If you need to file for an SR-22 but you don’t own a car, a non-owners policy is the best option for you. Here are the cheapest non-owner SR-22 policies in California.

  • Travelers- $809 Annually
  • State Farm- $817 Annually
Company Annual Premium
Travelers $809
State Farm $817
Progressive $912
Nationwide $964
GEICO $1,021
Kemper $1,030

Average Cost of SR-22 Insurance in California

Violation Annual Premium (Liability Only) Annual Premium (Full Coverage)
DUI $1,432 $3,382
At-Fault Accident $961 $2,216
Minor Violation $840 $1,949

How SR-22 Affects Car Insurance Rates

In general, drivers can expect to pay an average of $993 more per year for their car insurance with an SR-22. This is often due to activity on your driving record that caused the need for the SR-22 and not as a direct result of the SR-22 itself. For example, if you were convicted of a DUI violation and were mandated to obtain an SR-22, the increase in your policy will most likely be due to the DUI.

There is also a filing fee associated with an SR-22. This fee ranges between $15 to $25 and is in addition to the rate increase. Once the SR-22 is no longer required, it can be removed from your policy, which will help with the premium increase.

How to File an SR-22

You may receive an order from a court, state government, or the DMV requesting that you file for an SR-22. Once you get this formal request, your first step to obtaining an SR-22 is contacting your insurance company. If you don’t have car insurance already, you will need to obtain a policy.

Some insurance companies disqualify drivers requiring SR-22s and will decline to write policies for them. Before you obtain a new policy, or request an SR-22 from your current insurer, you should first confirm the company will provide them. Otherwise, you can potentially be penalized by the state.

Another option would be to purchase a non-owner policy with the SR-22 attached. You can then potentially keep your current auto policy in force without issue. This also works if you don’t own a car but need the SR-22 to keep your license active.

Once you have a policy in place with a company that accepts SR-22s, your next step is to request that it be added to your policy. Your insurer may ask for additional information, such as why the SR-22 is needed, or ask for a copy of the formal request. After this information is provided, the insurance company will file the SR-22 with the state.

Your insurer will also notify the state if your policy is canceled or lapses. So if you decide to switch insurance carriers during the time period the SR-22 is needed, try to avoid a lapse in coverage if you can, and obtain the SR-22 with the new carrier as soon as possible.

How Long Do I Need to Have SR-22 Insurance?

The amount of time an SR-22 is needed will vary by state. In California, the minimum filing period is three years, but depending on the reason for the SR-22, it can be required for up to five years. You are also required to keep the SR-22 even if you no longer live in the state that requires it.

Other Effects of SR-22 Insurance

In addition to affecting the price of your insurance, SR-22s can also affect your driving privileges. If you fail to obtain an SR-22 by the timeframe given or keep it for the entire duration required, the state can suspend your driver’s license or car registration. You may also incur financial penalties and reinstatement fees.

Not all insurance companies will agree to write policies for drivers who need SR-22s so it can also limit the available options.

SR-22 Insurance State Requirements

Unsurprisingly, each state has its own requirements for SR-22s. For example, the following states don’t require SR-22s at all:

  • Delaware
  • Kentucky
  • New Mexico
  • New York
  • North Carolina
  • Oklahoma

Some states require drivers to provide proof that they carry more than the minimum limits mandated by law. Florida and Virginia are two of these states. In addition to the SR-22 for certain violations, Florida and Virginia may require an FR-22 for DUIs or DWIs.

Arkansas and Indiana are two other states that have different forms. For example, rather than filing proof of financial responsibility showing you have coverage going forward, Arkansas requires an SR-21 after accidents that meet a certain threshold to prove that insurance was in force at the time the loss occurred, and Indiana requires an SR-50 form after a DUI to confirm the dates you were insured.

How Much Does Credit Score Affect SR-22 Insurance Costs

Credit score is one of the factors used to determine the price of your auto policy. In general, the lower your credit score, the riskier you look to insurance companies. Similarly, insurers consider drivers who need SR-22s as high risk as well.

Therefore, if you need an SR-22 and your credit is poor,  you can expect to pay more for your insurance. Drivers with low credit pay 72% more on average for their insurance than drivers with good credit scores and SR-22s can increase car insurance rates by an average of 18% or more. However, the exact amount of the increase will vary depending on the company.

Alternatives to SR-22

If a state is requiring you to obtain an SR-22, there is no way around filing one. As previously mentioned, there are some states that either don’t require an SR-22 filing or may request alternative forms such as the SR-21, SR-50, or FR-22. To determine exactly what you need, contacting a local independent agent may be your best option.

How to Get Cheaper Car Insurance in California After a DUI

While your rates may increase after a DUI, there are some ways in which you can help control the cost of your car insurance. First, get quotes from different companies. Some insurers may charge less for DUI violations than others and switching insurance companies can significantly reduce your premium.

You should also look into any other applicable discounts for which you may be eligible. Take a defensive driving course, for example, or bundle your home or renters policy to save some additional money.

Lastly, try to avoid accidents or violations going forward. DUI violations generally affect your insurance for 3-5 years, but the longer you go without additional activity on your record, the more you should see your rates drop.


Do you need SR-22 insurance if you don’t have a car?

Yes, you will need to obtain SR-22 insurance even if you don’t have a car. If a court orders you to file an SR-22 and you don’t currently own a car, you can purchase a non-owner policy. The insurance company for the non-owner policy can file the SR-22 to be compliant with the state.

How do you get rid of SR-22?

SR-22s generally need to be on file for at least three years. After the required time period has elapsed, you can ask your insurance company to remove the SR-22 from your policy.

How much does SR-22 cost?

Adding an SR-22 to your policy will affect the price, depending on what caused the need for the SR-22 in the first place. The amount of the increase can vary by company, but averages $400 a month, in addition to a $25 filing fee.

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