SR22 Insurance in Ohio
The SR-22 is in place to protect citizens against hazardous drivers. Owning a SR-22 certificate shows that you hold at least the minimum insurance requirements in Ohio and that, in case of an accident, there is some insurance company who will pay for the damage and medical expenses.
Who needs SR22 insurance in Ohio
As an Ohio resident, you may be required to file a SR22 in any of the following scenarios:
- You were uninsured at the moment of an accident with more than $400 in property damage or bodily injury/death of a passenger, whether or not you were at fault;
- You failed to show valid proof of insurance at an officer's request;
- You were convicted of a major traffic violation (including the most common one of driving while intoxicated).
As an alternative to SR-22 insurance, you are allowed to deposit $30,000 in cash or securities with the State Treasurer or file a $32,500 surety bond with an insurance company that is licensed to operate in Ohio. You will have to keep the deposit or the bond for the whole duration of the SR-22 requirement (see below for minimum filing terms).
Minimum insurance requirements for Ohio residents
Similarly to most American states, Ohio imposes all drivers to hold at least liability insurance. Limits are some of the lowest in the country – 12.5/25/7.5:
- $12,500 per injury of a passenger in an accident where you are at fault, but not more than $25,000 for all passengers
- $7,500 for damage caused on others' properties.
Types of SR-22 insurance available in Ohio
Any of the three SR-22 insurance types are available in Ohio. Depending on your needs, you can get an Operator's Certificate (covers drivers who don't own a vehicle), a Owner's Certificate (covers drivers when operating a vehicle that they own) or a Operator's-Owner's certificate (a combination of the previous two, covers motorists operating any vehicle).
Minimum filing period for SR-22 insurance in Ohio
Drivers with a SR-22 requirement have to keep filing a SR-22 for three years. Depending on the seriousness of the offense, the court is entitled to ask for a longer period of time.
The policy has to be renewed yearly, at least two weeks before expiration. Failing to renew it – or at least let the insurer know of your intent – can lead to the insurer notifying the DMV who, in turn, will have your driving privileges suspended until the insurance is reinstated. Letting it lapse for more than a couple of days could lead to the resetting of your SR-22 filing period.
"Forgetting" to renew your policy is never a valid excuse. The insurance company will literally bomb you with notification mails, so you can't claim you missed them all and didn't remember your policy was lapsing. Keep in mind, however, that the State will not send reminders and the responsibility of renewing your policy and submitting the required form is yours and the company's.