If you are convicted of a DUI, reckless driving, driving without insurance, or other serious traffic-related crimes in Ohio, you may have to get Ohio SR22 insurance. Or, alternatively, Ohio law allows you to prove financial responsibility by obtaining a bond.
Usually, following a conviction, your license will be suspended until you prove financial responsibility by getting your insurance company to file an SR22 with the state, or get a bond.
Ohio’s Insurance Requirements
Ohio is an at-fault state in which drivers can be sued for damages for accidents they cause. Without insurance, other drivers, passengers, and pedestrians on the road are at serious risk: If you cause property damage injury, other people rely on you and your insurance company to provide the cash they need to get their injuries treated, compensate them for time off work, pay caregivers, and get back on their feet. To the extent possible, anyway.
That’s why Ohio and every other state requires car owners to be insured.
To drive your car legally in Ohio, you have to carry a minimum bodily injury liability insurance of at least $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident. You must also carry at least $25,000 in property damage liability.
If you’re stopped for a traffic violation in Ohio, or you’re involved in an accident, you’ll have to provide the cops with proof of financial responsibility. This can be a copy of your insurance card or proof via a cell phone app.
Ohio Penalties for Driving Without Insurance
The penalties in Ohio for driving without insurance are severe:
- License suspension for up to 2 years
- License reinstatement fee of $500
- Impounding of license plates
- Certificate of registration
To get your license reinstated in Ohio, you’ll have to pay the $500 license reinstatement fee. And you’ll generally also need to show proof of financial responsibility in the form of an SR22 form filed with the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles by your car insurance company, or by posting a bond.
Ohio SR22 Insurance
The term “SR22” doesn’t refer to a specific type of insurance. It’s just the name of a form your insurance company files with the state Bureau of Motor Vehicles. The form simply verifies to the state that you have the state minimum insurance requirement in force.
It also acknowledges that they will inform the state if your insurance lapses. So they can suspend your drivers’ license.
If that happens, you’ll have to pay another license reinstatement fee, and obtain another filing.
Getting your SR22 filing is usually easy: In most cases, you can just ask your car insurance agent. They should be able to file it for you electronically, so you can get your license reinstated that much faster. (If they can’t file electronically, that’s a sign you’re with the wrong agent.)
Once you’re flagged as an SR22 customer, you can expect your car insurance premiums to jump. As far as the car insurance industry is concerned, you’re now a “high-risk driver.” And your insurance premiums will shortly reflect that.
Some insurance carriers will increase rates more than others after a DUI or other incident. Sometimes substantially more. Other carriers are more forgiving of a single incident.
As soon as you’re convicted of a traffic violation, or you have a license suspended, you should get a fresh series of quotes from multiple different Ohio car insurance carriers.
If your current agent can only quote you rates from a single carrier, that’s another sign you’re with the wrong agent!
Ohio SR22 Filing Fees
Expect to pay a filing fee to get your SR22 filed electronically. This usually ranges from $15 to $50, depending on the insurance company. The SR22 filing fee isn’t nearly as important as the monthly ongoing or 6-month premium.
Filing a Financial Responsibility/ SR22 Bond in Ohio
Ohio is one of a few states that allow you to demonstrate financial responsibility by posting a bond. You can buy an SR22 bond from several carriers doing business in Ohio.
Your Ohio SR22 bond must be kept on file with the state for a minimum of three years. In some instances, such as a DUI/DWI conviction, you may have to carry it for at least five years.
This can be a good solution if you don’t own a car, and you don’t need anything like comprehensive coverage, nor collision coverage that pays you for damage to your car.
But there are several problems with this approach:
First the financial responsibility bond in Ohio is designed to provide only the bare minimum insurance protection legally required to drive in Ohio. That is:
- $25,000 in personal liability protection per person
- $50,000 in personal liability protection per incident
- $25,000 in property damage liability protection
Even though these limits are wholly inadequate to provide real protection against the financial ramifications of any kind of serious traffic accident, you can’t buy more protection with a bond.
There’s no protection against damages to your own car.
There’s no personal injury coverage to protect injuries to yourself. So if you’re considering using an SR22 bond in Ohio, you definitely want some medical insurance coverage in place! Otherwise you’d be on your own for all costs arising from the treatment of injuries to yourself in an accident.
But if you want more than the bare minimum coverage, the best way to go is to go through an independent car insurance broker, and get quotes from 6 to 12 quality car insurance companies doing business in the state.
Don’t use the big online quote sites. Unless you like getting flooded with calls from insurance agents who buy your information from these sites.
The best way to go is to go directly to an independent insurance broker like the Select Insurance Group. Unlike captive agents who can only write business for a single company, we’re able to take your information from a single phone call and shop it around to as many as a dozen high-quality insurance companies.
So you can get all the information you need from a single phone call.
And you won’t have 20 agents who all bought the same lead ringing your phone off the hook!
The Select Insurance Group Difference
Select Insurance Group was created with the high-risk driver in mind. I remember the frustration, humiliation, and runaround I received years ago, when I made a one-time mistake behind the wheel. Many people who need SR 22 insurance are good people.
But too many insurance companies – even household names – give SR22 customers the runaround. They jack up premiums beyond all reasonableness because they assume you won’t be shopping around.
They cancel insurance outright.
Their agents and customer service people too often treat the higher-risk driver like crap. Which is the last thing you need right now!I founded Select Insurance Group because you don’t deserve the runaround, and you don’t deserve to be treated like dirt by insurance companies that just don’t get it.
So we built the agency around you, the higher-risk driver!
We seek out the best insurance companies that treat high-risk customers fairly. And that are willing to compete aggressively for your business.
We also invest a lot of effort and resources into training agents about the ins and outs unique to the high-risk and SR 22 insurance markets.
We’ve invested in the technology necessary to file your SR22 and other documents electronically with the Bureau of Motor Vehicles. So you can get your license reinstated and get back out on the road that much sooner.
We know how to use a non-owner insurance policy on out of state tickets to shield your main policy from big rate increases after an incident.
I founded Select Insurance Group to make sure that even the high-risk drivers got a positive experience buying car insurance.
Yes, premiums will be higher than they were before you got in trouble. But they don’t need to be needlessly higher!
Shopping around to multiple carriers is the number one way we can help you keep the carriers honest and make sure you’re getting treated fairly and getting the best value.
Shop Around Today
Getting the best possible deal on car insurance even after you have a DUI or reckless driving conviction or an Ohio SR22 insurance requirement is very easy.
Just click here, and fill out the easy online form with some basic information.
Or call us at (855) 438-7353.
We’re looking forward to hearing from you.
For Further Reading