Difference Between an SR22 and an FR44
If you've been convicted of driving under the influence or driving while intoxicated, you've probably heard of an FR-44 or SR-22. Though similar, FR-44s and SR-22s are two different insurance filings, and one or the other may be required to retain or restore your driving privileges. In the end, understanding the difference between SR-22s and FR-44s can help you stay legal on the road.
What is an FR-44?
As of January 2022, only Virginia and Florida use FR-44s. An FR-44 is sometimes called "DUI insurance," however, it's not actually a type of insurance. An FR-44 is a certificate verifying insurance coverage that meets the state’s applicable requirements for financial responsibility. An FR-44 is required when a person is applying to reinstate their driver’s license following a DUI or DWI conviction.
Your auto insurance company is responsible for filing this certificate with the regulatory authority in your state (e.g. the Department of Motor Vehicles).
When is an FR-44 required?
In Virginia, a driver may be required to file and maintain an FR-44 certificate for three years after a serious conviction like:
- Maiming someone while operating a vehicle under the influence
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Driving with a forfeited license due to a conviction, or in the case of a juvenile, after a finding of not innocent
- Violation of federal laws, laws of other states, or local laws similar to the above
In Florida, an FR-44 is required if you are convicted of driving under the influence of drugs or other intoxicants. An FR-44 is required for driver's license reinstatement and must be maintained for three years.
How much does an FR-44 cost?
It generally costs between $15 and $25 to file an FR-44 certificate. However, the actual cost of an FR-44 policy is determined by your age, location, vehicle type, and other factors. If you’re required to keep an FR-44 certificate on file, you’ll be subject to higher minimum coverage limits than most individuals because you are now considered a high-risk driver. And with higher minimum coverage limits, you can expect to pay more than you would for a policy that doesn't have to satisfy FR-44 requirements.
According to Virginia law, drivers who are required to file an FR-44 must purchase a policy with coverage that is double the minimum liability limits. The main difference between an SR-22 and an FR-44 is that an FR-44 requires you to buy additional liability insurance. With liability insurance requirements increasing in Virginia as of January 1, 2022, FR-44 coverage requirements are now:
- $60,000 for bodily injury or death to one person
- $120,000 for bodily injury or death of two or more people
- $40,000 for property damage liability
In Florida, FR-44 liability requirements mean drivers must carry:
- $100,000 for bodily injury or death to one person
- $300,000 for bodily injury or death of two or more people
- $50,000 for property damage liability
What is an SR-22?
An SR-22 is also referred to as a Certificate of Financial Responsibility. Like an FR-44, there's no such thing as SR-22 insurance, though you may hear people refer to it in this way. An SR-22 is simply a document that your auto insurance company files with the state to certify that you have an insurance policy in place that meets that state’s minimum liability coverage or financial responsibility requirements.
When is an SR-22 Required?
SR-22s are required in many states, and reasons for filing vary. However, generally speaking, you could be required to submit an SR-22 form if:
- You've been convicted of a DUI or DWI offense (except in Florida and Virginia as noted above)
- Your driver's license has been suspended
- You have been cited for failing to maintain auto insurance coverage in the past
- You've committed serious driving-related violations
Get Help with an FR-44 or SR-22
State laws regarding FR-44s and SR-22s can be complicated, but we can answer any questions and help you find affordable coverage, regardless of your driving history. Call 1-877-GO-DIRECT (1-877-463-4732), visit us online, or visit your local Direct Auto for a free quote.