What is the Legal Minimum Car Insurance Coverage Required by Each State?

As you progress down the list, you'll notice that uninsured driving is illegal in almost every state. Make sure you meet your state's minimum requirements before driving. Your state's laws can include four basic types of coverage: personal injury liability, property damage liability, collision coverage, and comprehensive coverage. New Hampshire and Virginia are the only two states that don't require car insurance.

That said, there is no single rule across the country when it comes to how much car insurance you should have. Each state has a different minimum amount of car insurance that drivers must obtain in order to legally drive on public roads. In other words, the amount of car insurance coverage you legally need depends on the state in which you live. Car insurance is mandatory in almost every state.

Known as the mandatory minimum, drivers must purchase and maintain a certain level of car insurance from an insurance company in the event of an accident or injury to another person or property. If you don't maintain coverage, you could be breaking the law. There are a handful of states that don't require you to buy auto insurance, but instead show evidence of financial responsibility in some other way, such as with a bond, a cash deposit with the state, or a certificate of self-insurance. The cost of car insurance is different for each driver and depends on a variety of personal factors.

Full coverage car insurance is minimum car insurance plus collision, comprehensive, and PIP coverage (if your state doesn't require it). Usually, an auto insurance policy with minimal coverage includes liability coverage for bodily injury and property damage, but some states also require additional types of coverage. So, if you're at fault for an accident, a branch office falls on your windshield, or a storm floods your neighborhood, for example, a minimum car insurance won't protect your car. A full-coverage auto insurance policy generally includes liability insurance and your state's minimum coverage requirements (if applicable), as well as comprehensive and collision coverage.

For the exact minimum coverage requirements in your state, you can visit the website of your state's insurance department or contact your auto insurer. Some states allow drivers to meet minimum requirements through a bond, deposits, evidence of self-insurance, or by having an auto insurance policy. Collision coverage pays for damage to your car after an accident, no matter who caused it, and comprehensive coverage covers the type of damage that can happen to your car when you're not driving it. These apply to help with the cost of injuries to you or your passengers if you are ever hit by a driver who doesn't have enough or no car insurance.

Auto insurance liability coverages can be given in a series of numbers, which indicate the amounts covered for injuries per person, accident, and total damages. For most drivers, it's simply easier to meet minimum state auto insurance requirements than to deal with alternative insurance, and it's certainly less risky. This will not protect you financially and, if you cause a car accident, you are financially responsible for all bodily injuries and property damage you cause. However, motorists are still responsible for paying for bodily injury and property damage if they cause a car accident.

Some States Require Additional Types of Auto Insurance Coverage Beyond Liability for Bodily Injury and Property Damage. This coverage helps pay for any damage you cause to another driver, your passengers, or any property such as your car. The table below shows the minimum liability insurance limits required by each state along with any additional coverage required.

Blanche Kroner
Blanche Kroner

Friendly social media trailblazer. Typical music lover. Professional travel scholar. Hipster-friendly zombie practitioner. Evil travel fan.

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