SR-22 in Washington: What You Need to Know

Washington drivers will need to maintain an SR-22 certificate for at least 36 months to reinstate their driving privileges after a serious violation.
Written by Matt Terzi
Edited by Pat Roache
The Washington State Department of Licensing (DOL) requires high-risk drivers with serious violations on their record to file an SR-22 certificate with their
car insurance
policy for three years to maintain their driving privileges.
  • Drivers with an SR-22 requirement will need to find a provider that is willing to insure them to file the SR-22 certificate on their behalf.
  • An SR-22 is typically required to reinstate a suspended Washington driver’s license after a serious traffic offense like a DUI or committing a hit-and-run accident.
  • Most insurance companies charge a $50 fee to file an SR-22, but you can also expect your insurance premiums to be much higher than before.

An SR-22 certificate could help you get your driving privileges back in Washington

The state of Washington typically requires
high-risk drivers
to maintain an SR-22 insurance policy for 36 months as part of the terms of a
suspended license reinstatement
. An SR-22 certificate proves to the DOL that a driver has at least the minimum
liability insurance
required in the event of an at-fault accident. 
Drivers must have the following minimum coverage amounts on their car insurance policy According to
Washington’s car insurance laws
, that includes:
SR-22 filing guarantees that your auto insurance company will notify the state if you ever drop these minimum coverages, which will often result in the loss of your driver’s license.
Key takeaway An SR-22 acts as guaranteed proof of financial responsibility from a licensed insurance provider for Washington drivers who have serious violations on their driving records.

Who needs an SR-22 in Washington?

Serious traffic violations that may result in a Washington license suspension with an SR-22 requirement include the following:
Keep in mind: You can be required to file an SR-22 if these infractions took place using your vehicle, even if you weren’t driving
Other reasons for needing SR-22 insurance in Washington include:
  • Failing to pay financial judgments such as fines or child support
  • Committing repeated traffic offenses and violations
Your three-year SR-22 requirement period will start over if your
insurance lapses
or you commit new offenses during this time.
Key takeaway Drivers with a DUI, major car accidents, outstanding financial judgments, repeated traffic offenses, or other major violations on their record may need an SR-22.

How to get SR-22 insurance in Washington

Only car insurance companies approved by the state of Washington can
file an SR-22 form
on your behalf. Talk to your insurance agent to see if your provider offers this service.
Worst case scenario: Not every auto insurance company will insure drivers with SR-22 requirements. You may need to shop around and find an insurance company willing to work with an SR-22 driver.

Washington SR-22 insurance costs

Most insurance providers charge a $50 nominal filing fee to file an SR-22 certificate. Drivers with SR-22 insurance requirements also typically receive higher insurance rates than drivers with
clean driving records
The severity of the initial violation will determine how much an SR-22 driver’s insurance premium will increase. Drivers with a recent SR-22 requirement should compare
car insurance quotes
to see which provider will offer them the best rate for this expensive insurance coverage.
Compare auto insurance policies
No spam or unwanted phone calls · No long forms
Find insurance savings
Are you overpaying for car insurance?
Compare quotes and find out in 45 seconds.
Try Jerry

Easiest way to compare and buy car insurance

No long forms
No spam or unwanted phone calls
Quotes from top insurance companies
Find insurance savings