The District of Columbia is all urban, and the price its drivers pay for car insurance reflects that. Rates fall substantially for those who choose a suburb in Maryland or Virginia; you can see how all ZIP codes compare below. No two car insurance companies will price the same policy the same, so it's wise to compare rates so you don't overpay. See the highest and lowest rate fielded from among six insurers for your neighborhood by entering in your ZIP code. To get a customized rate, select a gender, age group and coverage level.
District of Columbia state law requires the following minimum car insurance coverage:
Minimum bodily injury liability
Minimum property damage liability
Uninsured motorist bodily injury
Uninsured motorist property damage
$5,000 ($200 deductible)
What you need to know about car insurance in Washington D.C.
Penny Gusner CarInsurance.com Consumer Analyst
Bad drivers: Allstate's annual Best Driver's Report has continuously ranked Washington, D.C., in its bottom spot, with drivers facing a 100 percent greater-than-average chance of being in an accident.
When the likelihood of an accident is high, increased liability coverage limits make sense if you own a home or have substantial assets. Even a minor fender-bender can exceed the district's low $10,000 property damage requirement.
Washington D.C. Car Insurance Laws
Uninsured coverage is required: Uninsured motorist coverage is required, while underinsured motorist coverage must be offered, but can be rejected. Uninsured motorist in D.C. includes both bodily injury (UMBI) and property damage (UMPD) coverage.
UMPD has a maximum payout of $5,000 and has a deductible of $200. If your car is worth more than that, consider collision coverage. It pays up to the actual cash value of your vehicle – plus it repairs your car even if you are at fault.
The District of Columbia isn't a true no-fault state, but motorists must be offered personal injury protection (PIP) coverage, which he or she can reject. If you do carry PIP on your policy, D.C. law requires you choose within 60 days of an auto accident if you will use your PIP benefits or make claim against the at-fault driver.
ZIP code doesn't affect rate: Washington, D.C., does not allow insurance companies to charge based on ZIP code. That doesn't mean all companies charge the same price, though, only that the same driver pays the same rate whether he lives in Georgetown or in Anacostia. Insurers also may not increase your rates because of an accident that was not your fault.
Harsh uninsured motorist fines: Fines for driving without insurance start with $150 for the first 30 days you are without coverage and then $7 for each additional uninsured day, up to a maximum of $2,500.
Uninsured motorist penalties for Washington, D.C.: You may be fined up to $500, be sentenced to 90 days in jail, your registration may be suspended and your plates confiscated.
Largest car insurance companies for Washington D.C. by market share
Company / Group
Direct Premiums Written ($)
Market Share (%)
Berkshire Hathaway Insurance
State Farm Group
Progressive Insurance Group
Allstate Insurance Group
Liberty Mutual Insurance Companies
Erie Insurance Group
Hartford Insurance Group
Source: A.M. Best market share rankings are based on direct premiums written in 2013.