How to Get Non-Owner SR-22 Insurance in Virginia

If you need an SR-22 in Virginia but don’t own a car, your best bet would be to get non-owner car insurance.
Written by Zachary Morgan
Reviewed by Brenna Swanston
background
If you don’t own a car but still need to file an
SR-22
to get your license reinstated, you have the option of obtaining non-owner SR-22 car insurance—as long as you can find an insurance company willing to offer it.
Virginia
, like most other states, requires drivers to carry a minimum amount of liability insurance as well as proof of that insurance. For the most part, though, you’ll only have to show your proof of insurance in very specific circumstances, like after an accident or during a traffic stop. However, high-risk drivers are subjected to a bit more scrutiny than most.
Drivers with major (non-DUI) violations usually have to file an SR-22 with the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to prove they have enough
car insurance
coverage to drive legally. If you don’t own a car, that’s OK, because you still have a solution: getting Virginia non-owner car insurance.
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What is SR-22 insurance?

Despite what you may have heard about “SR-22 insurance,” you might be surprised to learn that an SR-22 isn’t actually a type of car insurance—it’s a testament to your financial responsibility, filed to the Virginia DMV by your insurance provider.
An SR-22’s job is to verify that you have purchased enough auto insurance to meet your state’s
minimum liability limits
. If you’ve been caught driving without insurance or engaging in reckless driving, you’ll probably need to file an SR-22 certificate on top of paying your license reinstatement fee.

Virginia auto insurance requirements

Virginia state law
requires that all drivers carry the following minimums of liability insurance:
Drivers in need of an SR-22 can meet these requirements by obtaining a liability-only policy. Of course, these are just the minimums required by law, and there are plenty of other coverages you can (and should) think about adding to your policy.
While other types of coverage are available (and a good idea for vehicle owners!), only liability insurance is required by law. Drivers with SR-22 requirements can meet them by purchasing a liability-only policy. 

Who needs an SR-22?

Drivers who have certain violations on their record may be required to file an
SR-22 certificate in Virginia
. Even if you don’t have a car to insure, this is often the only way you can get your driving privileges back after a
Virginia license suspension
.
If any of the following violations are on your driving record, you’ll probably need a Virginia SR-22 to get back on the road:
  • Reckless driving
  • Driving without a license 
  • At-fault accident without insurance
On top of the filing fee, you can expect your insurance rates to go up after an SR-22 filing. Note that, unlike other states, Virginia does not offer SR-22 certificates to drivers who have been convicted of a DUI. Instead, these individuals would have to file an
FR-44 form
.

How to get non-owner SR-22 insurance in Virginia

Getting non-owner car insurance is the best (and most affordable) option if you don’t have a car but are required to submit an SR-22 certificate.
Non-owner car insurance
is essentially liability coverage for people who drive fairly regularly but don’t own the vehicle in question.
Plenty of insurance providers offer non-owner policies—but not all of them are SR-22 compatible. If you want to find the most affordable non-owner SR-22 policy in Virginia, try checking with
Geico
,
USAA
, or
Progressive
.
To get a non-owner SR-22 policy, you’ll need to follow these steps: 
  • Contact local insurance agencies to find out if they offer non-owner insurance to drivers with SR-22 requirements. 
  • Try not to decide on a policy until you get at least three to five quotes. No matter what your driving history looks like, comparing car insurance quotes is the best way to find affordable coverage without sacrificing protection.
  • Check to see if you qualify for any insurance discounts. Some companies will lower your premiums if you take a defensive driving course or pay your bill in full
Your non-owner policy needs to be maintained for the duration of your SR-22 filing period of three to five years, depending on the violation. Unless you plan to stop driving after that period is over, though, don’t just drop the coverage like a hot potato. Remember that driving without insurance is a good way to end up back at square one again, though this time with the added joy of higher costs and a longer filing period.
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FAQs

Virginia SR-22 certificates are only for drivers convicted of serious violations other than a DUI offense. Minor violations might add up over time to increase your insurance rate, but it takes a major violation to end up with an SR-22 requirement.
Virginia has a three-year SR-22 filing requirement for first offenses, during which time you’ll need to keep minimum liability coverage to avoid even harsher consequences. Conversely, if you get an SR-22 for your second or third offense within five years, you’ll be required to maintain SR-22 insurance for five years
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