There are many factors that can impact your car insurance premium. These include your driving record, age, and vehicle type. It is also affected by where you live. Insurance rates for car insurance vary by state, sometimes by hundreds of thousands or even thousands of dollars.
Each state approaches auto insurance laws differently, and these differing laws affect the cost of car insurance. To help you start your insurance shopping, Bankrate collected average premiums from Quadrant Insurance Services and researched each state’s insurance requirements.
State-specific car insurance rates
Knowing your state’s insurance laws will help you to understand how claims are handled. Although it may be helpful to have a basic understanding of your state’s minimum auto insurance, you don’t need to memorize them. It is not possible to buy car insurance policies with lower limits than the state’s minimum.
Below is a table listing the average rates for minimum and full coverage in each state. The minimum liability limits for each state are listed in three numbers separated with a slash. These numbers are the minimum liability coverage for bodily injuries per person/bodily injury liability/property damages per accident.
The table below lists the minimum coverage for property damage liability and bodily injury. Uninsured motorist coverage is not available in all states. Personal injury protection (PIP), however, may be required by some states.
When you look at auto insurance quotes, remember that your price will vary based on factors like your age, driving history, location, vehicle and your eligibility for discounts. You may pay more than the average price because of this. These ranges can be used to estimate how much coverage you may need depending on your needs. Full coverage, which includes comprehensive and collision coverage, can be more expensive than buying minimum coverage insurance. Full coverage covers damage to your vehicle from accidents and other objects. However, you might still want to customize your policy by adding auto insurance endorsements. You may choose to add coverages or pay more than the average state.
The most expensive state for car insurance
Louisiana is the most expensive state for auto insurance. It costs $2,724 per year for full coverage insurance compared to the $1,674 national average. This is due to several factors, including the high frequency of accidents and uninsured drivers, increasing traffic density and accident risk, costly auto repairs, and increased severe weather events.
Florida’s high cost of car insurance is due to its vulnerability to severe weather. Florida is subject to hurricanes, storms, and floods each year. This can cause vehicular damage, and increase the risks for insurance companies. Florida also has the highest number of uninsured motorists in the country, at 20.4%, in addition to low mandatory coverage limits. Floridians pay $700 more to insure their car with full coverage than the national average.
New Yorkers pay more for their car insurance than any American driver, with the second-highest cost of minimum coverage and the third-highest cost of full coverage. High insurance rates in New York are due to the state’s large number of fraudulent insurance claims each year.
Cheapest state for car insurance
Maine is one of the most congested states in America. This makes it safer to drive and lowers the risk of an accident. Maine also has only 4.9% of uninsured motorists, making it one of the least expensive states. All these factors make Maine the most affordable state for auto insurance at $965 per year for full coverage.
Ohio, despite having a high driving population and an increasing risk of motor vehicle accidents and injuries, is the second-cheapest state to get full coverage. Ohio’s combination of suburban and rural roads may explain the lower cost of coverage. This is because it has fewer drivers, which helps to reduce road risk. Full coverage costs Ohio drivers an average $1,034 per year.
Nearly 40% of drivers in Idaho are between the ages of 30 and 54, for which rates are usually lower on average compared to younger and older age groups. This could explain the lower than average rates in Idaho. Many cities are also less populated than others, and therefore have shorter commute times. This reduces the chance of road accidents.
State with no-fault
Your state of residence is another factor that can impact your car insurance rates. Some states are considered no-fault states, while others are at-fault states, or tort states. Below is a list with 12 states that are not at fault.
- New Jersey
- New York
- North Dakota
No-fault states allow each party to file a claim with their car insurance to cover minor medical expenses following an accident. Drivers in a no-fault state are typically required to carry Personal Injury Protection (PIP) to help cover these medical costs. No-fault states are able to determine liability in an accident. The responsible party will be liable for any property damage or medical expenses exceeding a threshold depending on the state. At-fault states allow the other driver to be held responsible for any injuries or property damage. The driver at fault is exempt from having to file medical bills with their own insurance.
Your car insurance rate will be affected by where you live
Are you in an area that is susceptible to flooding and storms? Is your city prone to vehicle thefts? Is your state requiring a higher minimum level of coverage? These cases may require you to pay higher car insurance. High premiums are a result of high risk areas such as urban areas that have dense traffic and long commute times.
Additional factors that affect your car insurance rate
Your location isn’t the only factor that will affect your auto insurance rates. Your:
- Credit score
- Driving record
- Marital status
- Make and model of your car
- Requirements for liability of the state
- Annual mileage
- History of Claims
Each car insurance company weighs these factors differently when setting rates. For example, some companies might weigh your driving record more than others. This is why shopping around often offers you the best chance at finding affordable car insurance.
Not all rating factors are used in every state. Some states prohibit the use of credit scores, age, gender, and gender as insurance rating factors. Credit is prohibited in Washington, California, Hawaii, Massachusetts and Michigan for rating insurance policies.
Questions frequently asked
What is a tort state?
Tort states are those that follow “at-fault” insurance laws. A tort state is one where the driver who was at fault in a crash is responsible to pay for the damage they caused. The driver not at fault does not need to file a claim with their insurance company. There are also tort options available in some no-fault states like Kentucky that allow for parties to bring lawsuits to cover medical expenses.
What is the state’s minimum requirement for car insurance?
Car insurance is required by most states. Although some states don’t require it, all states require that you have sufficient assets to meet the minimum liability requirements. Insurance experts recommend that you purchase car insurance to protect your finances.
Is insurance based on ZIP codes legal?
Your ZIP code can be used in most states to rate your auto insurance policy. Higher car insurance premiums could result from areas that are more vulnerable to vehicle thefts, weather damage and collisions. California and Michigan laws prohibit insurance companies using ZIP codes to determine premiums. Your ZIP code may still be used by companies, but not the one with the greatest weight.
Is property damage covered by no-fault insurance?
No. No. Property damage would instead be covered by the at-fault driver’s policy.