State-by-State Auto Insurance Requirements

It is state law to carry auto insurance regardless of where you live in the United States. Only New Hampshire and Virginia do not strictly require you to have insurance coverage.

The amount of insurance you are required to carry, however, varies by state. Each state board comes up with their minimum requirements, and these are designed to ensure that if you are involved in an accident, you can pay for losses.

Despite the requirement, the Insurance Research Council (IRC) estimates that one out of eight drivers were uninsured in 2014.

The reasons for being uninsured vary – from people who cannot afford the policies to those who refuse to insure their car because it is not worth insuring.

Regardless, with compulsory insurance in 48 states and the District of Columbia, risking driving without insurance puts you financially liable for incidents, but also possibly citations from the state.

insurance requirements by state

Why Insurance is Compulsory in Most States

Most states require that you carry insurance or accept personal financial liability. For example, New Hampshire has no minimum coverage to drive legally, but by driving without insurance you are accepting the cost personally. The Commonwealth of Virginia has similar laws. When you are deemed personally responsible by the state, it means that:

  • You must personally compensate anyone for injuries, medical payments, and vehicle damage in an accident you cause.
  • You must reimburse for property damage caused by your accident.
  • You must pay for your injuries and losses after an accident.

What Most States Require

States will have categories of insurance they require, and the minimums for those categories will vary.

You can expect to pay for:

  • Bodily Injury Liability – This coverage is per person and per accident with maximum limits on both.
  • Property Damage Liability – Coverage is per accident but does not cover your vehicle. It only covers property you are responsible for damages.
  • Personal Injury Protection – Not all states require PIP, but this covers per accident and is limited to medical expenses with a maximum amount allowed.
  • Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist – Again, not all states require this level of coverage. However, those who do define it on a per person and per accident basis.

Most states require property damage and bodily injury, with only a handful requiring all four.

What are the Minimum Insurance Requirements by State?

When looking at minimums, you will notice that they are presented in “20/40/20” format. In this format, it would mean that you are required to carry $20,000 bodily injury per person, $40,000 per accident bodily injury, and $20,000 property damage.

If you want to ensure you are obeying the law, or you want to save and purchase only the minimum, here are the limits to know:

State 
Alabama$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
Alaska$50,000 bodily injury liability per person
$100,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
Arizona$15,000 bodily injury liability per person
$30,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$10,000 property damage liability per accident
Arkansas$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
California$15,000 bodily injury liability per person
$30,000 bodily injury liability to more than one person
$5,000 property damage liability per accident
Colorado$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$15,000 property damage liability per accident
Connecticut$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
$25,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per person
$50,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per accident
Delaware$25,000 bodily injury or death per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$10,000 property damage liability per accident
Florida$10,000 property damage liability per accident
$10,000 personal injury protection
Georgia$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
Hawaii$20,000 bodily injury liability per person
$40,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$10,000 property damage liability per accident
$10,000 personal injury protection
Idaho$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$15,000 property damage liability per accident
Illinois$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$20,000 property damage liability per accident
$25,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person
$50,000 uninsured motorist coverage per accident
Indiana$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
Iowa$20,000 bodily injury liability per person
$40,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$15,000 property damage liability per accident
Kansas$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
$25,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per person
$50,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per accident
Kentucky$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
$10,000 personal injury protection
Louisiana$15,000 bodily injury liability per person
$30,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
Maine$50,000 bodily injury liability per person
$100,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
$50,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person
$100,000 uninsured motorist coverage per accident
$2,000 medical payments coverage
Maryland$30,000 bodily injury liability per person
$60,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$15,000 property damage liability per accident
Massachusetts$20,000 bodily injury liability per person
$40,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$5,000 property damage liability per accident
$20,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person
$40,000 uninsured motorist coverage per accident
$8,000 personal injury protection
Michigan$20,000 bodily injury liability per person
$40,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$10,000 property damage liability per accident
Minnesota$30,000 bodily injury liability per person
$60,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$10,000 property damage liability per accident
$25,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per person
$50,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per accident
$40,000 personal injury protection
Mississippi$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
Missouri$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
$25,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person
$50,000 uninsured motorist coverage per accident
Montana$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$20,000 property damage liability per accident
Nebraska$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
$25,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person
$50,000 uninsured motorist coverage per accident
Nevada$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$20,000 property damage liability per accident
New Hampshire$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
$25,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per person
$50,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per accident
$25,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist property damage coverage
$1,000 medical payments coverage
*Minimum only if driver opts to buy insurance
New Jersey$15,000 bodily injury liability per person
$30,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$5,000 property damage liability per accident
$15,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury
New Mexico$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$10,000 property damage liability per accident
New York$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$50,000 liability for death per person
$100,000 liability for death per accident
$10,000 property damage liability per accident
$50,000 personal injury protection
$25,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person
$50,000 uninsured motorist coverage per accident
North Carolina$30,000 bodily injury liability per person
$60,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
$30,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person
$60,000 uninsured motorist coverage per accident
$25,000 uninsured motorist property damage coverage per accident
North Dakota$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
$25,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per person
$50,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per accident
$30,000 personal injury protection
Ohio$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
Oklahoma$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
Oregon$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$20,000 property damage liability per accident
$25,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person
$50,000 uninsured motorist coverage per accident
$15,000 personal injury protection
Pennsylvania$15,000 bodily injury liability per person
$30,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$5,000 property damage liability per accident
$5,000 medical benefits
Rhode Island$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
South Carolina$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
$25,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person
$50,000 uninsured motorist coverage per accident
$25,000 uninsured motorist property damage coverage
South Dakota$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
$25,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per person
$50,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per accident
Tennessee$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$15,000 property damage liability per accident
Texas$30,000 bodily injury liability per person
$60,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
Utah$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$65,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$15,000 property damage liability per accident
$3,000 personal injury protection
Vermont$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$10,000 property damage liability per accident
$50,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per person
$100,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per accident
$10,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist property damage coverage per accident
Virginia$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$20,000 property damage liability per accident
*Minimum only if driver opts to buy insurance
Washington$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$10,000 property damage liability per accident
Washington, D.C.$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$10,000 property damage liability per accident
$20,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per person
$50,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per accident
$5,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist property damage coverage per accident
West Virginia$20,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$25,000 property damage liability per accident
$25,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person
Wisconsin$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$10,000 property damage liability per accident
$25,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person
$50,000 uninsured motorist coverage per accident
Wyoming$25,000 bodily injury liability per person
$50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$20,000 property damage liability per accident

The Risks of Bare Minimum Coverage

Yes, if you follow the minimum coverages, you are driving legally in your state. However, the coverage is unlikely to be enough if you were in a severe accident. If you were at fault for the crash, the remaining payments would come from your bank account and assets.

Choosing the bare minimum is a personal financial decision, but one you should talk over with an agent. Consider the cost of replacing or repairing your vehicle, medical payments, and property damage costs of the average collision in your state too.

Sometimes, drivers tweak their coverages to match their needs. They may have minimum property damage but increase the bodily injury coverage or add underinsured and uninsured policies for extra coverage.

Regardless, knowing the minimums is a great starting point. From here, you can add the coverage you need to protect yourself out there on the road today.

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