Every state has different auto insurance requirements. The minimum requirement is the amount of auto insurance coverage that each driver must carry to comply with the law in their state.
In this guide, we will discuss the auto insurance requirements by state and the average rates from top insurance companies.
- Auto insurance requirements vary by state, but most states require you to have a minimum level of liability coverage.
- Liability coverage protects you from being sued if an accident that was your fault causes harm to another person or their property.
- Liability insurance doesn’t cover injuries or damage to your property.
- Some states require you to have other coverages in addition to liability. These may include uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage and personal injury protection.
What is state minimum car insurance?
State minimum car insurance is the minimum liability coverage your state requires you to have. The specific coverage amount varies by state.
Liability insurance covers bodily injury and property damage you cause to others in an accident, but it won’t pay for the damages to your car or your injuries. CarInsurance.com recommends a full coverage policy comprising collision and comprehensive coverage if you need complete protection or are financing a vehicle.
Minimum liability car insurance requirements by state
Most states require some form of car insurance – the exceptions are Virginia and New Hampshire. In Virginia, you must pay an uninsured motorist fee of $500.
See the table below, which has the minimum liability car insurance requirements by state and other types of required insurance.
* Florida doesn’t require bodily injury liability coverage, but many insurers only offer policies with minimum amounts of 10/20 of bodily injury coverage.
** Auto insurance isn’t mandatory in New Hampshire, but if you choose to buy insurance, these are the minimum amounts.
*** Rhode Island doesn’t require drivers to buy UM/UIM coverage if buying minimum liability coverage. If you buy higher liability limits, UM is required.
**** You can drive without insurance in Virginia, but you must pay an uninsured motorist fee of $500.
***** Full PIP can be waived in Maryland for a limited PIP option.
******In New Jersey, a basic policy with lower limits also is available. Still, it should only be considered by those with few family responsibilities and few real assets and is not recommended.
Key to acronyms:
- MedPay: Medical payments coverage
- PIP: Personal injury protection
- PPI: Property protection insurance
- UM: Uninsured motorist coverage
- UIM: Underinsured motorist coverage
- UMPD: Uninsured motorist property damage coverage
How much does minimum liability car insurance cost?
Below, you can see the average rates by state for minimum liability levels of coverage, according to 2022 data.
Average rates for minimum liability car insurance, by company
Even with bare-bones coverage, you can still save on car insurance by comparing rates. The difference between the highest and lowest rate fielded from significant insurers can vary widely.
To compare car insurance rates by company, below you’ll see how large insurers rank on price for state minimum liability coverage in 2022.
Which states don’t require car insurance?
New Hampshire and Virginia are the two states that don’t require car insurance.
Driving without car insurance is legal in New Hampshire. However, drivers will still be held liable for damages they cause to others and can expect their licenses and registrations to be suspended if they cannot compensate for damages.
Virginia drivers who want to avoid getting car insurance can do so by paying $500 yearly to the state, but this doesn’t provide any accident coverage to them. The at-fault driver still remains liable for any damages they cause during an accident.
Resources & Methodology
CarInsurance.com commissioned Quadrant Information Services to pull rates in 2022 for a 40-year-old male driver with a good driving record.
– Michelle Megna contributed to this story.