The Illinois Secretary of State requires an “SR-22”, also referred to as a certificate of insurance, for many drivers who have had their license suspended or were caught driving without insurance. Under a standard insurance policy the car owner is given an insurance card to produce if pulled over, no formal notice is given to the state. With SR-22 coverage the insurer notifies the state that you are insured and advises the state if there is a lapse in coverage.
Because of the notification burden many standard auto insurers will not issue SR-22 policies. The insurance companies that do allow us to issue immediate proof of coverage once payment is received. The Castlewood agents can provide quotes and proof of insurance in one visit if the driver can make the first month’s payment. Purchasing insurance at the state minimum limits helps avoid the fine of $500 for your first office of driving without insurance.
In Illinois the state minimum limits are $20,000/$40,000/$15,000. The limits cover $20,000 of injury to one person, $40,000 in injuries per accident and $15,000 in property damage. Many North Chicago and Waukegan drivers who are eligible for higher limits choose to purchase the state minimum limits to save on their premiums. In Indiana and Wisconsin the law requires $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident, but a lower property damage limit of $10,000.
There are three main forms of SR22 insurance:
- An “Operator’s Certificate” covers the use of any vehicle the insured does not own
- An “Owner’s Certificate” insures vehicles owned by the insured and listed on the SR22 certificate
- An “Operators-Owners Certificate” covers in listed driver for operating the vehciles of others and those they own that are listed on the certificate document
After a license suspension or convictions for driving without insurance an SR22 can be required for up to three to five years, depending on the circumstances. Insurers submit notice 15 days before cancellation to the state if a policyholder does not pay. Keeping the SR22 policy current is the best way to limit future fines and quicken the process of removing the SR22 requirement.
Many drivers forced to purchase insurance after a conviction look for a way out, the only alternative to purchasing SR22 coverage when required is to deposit $55,000 with State of Illinois or a bond of equal amount. Our North Chicago based agents can assist drivers in complying with the state’s requirement in the most cost effective way possible.