Chris Abrams

Licensed Insurance Agent

Chris is the founder of Abrams Insurance Solutions and Marcan Insurance, which provide personal financial analysis and planning services for families and small businesses across the U.S. His companies represent nearly 100 of the top-rated insurance companies. Chris has been a licensed life and health insurance agent since 2009 and has active insurance licenses in all 50 U.S. states and D.C. Chr...

Licensed Insurance Agent

Ty Stewart

Licensed Insurance Agent

Ty Stewart is the founder and CEO of He started researching and studying about life insurance when he got his first policy for his own family. He has been featured as a life insurance expert speaker at agent conventions and in top publications.  As an independent licensed life insurance agent, he has helped clients nationwide to secure affordable coverage while making the...

Licensed Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Mar 12, 2024

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Auto Insurance FAQ

The Lowdown

  • Auto insurance coverage is required in almost every state across the U.S.
  • In tort, or at-fault states, one party in an auto accident is generally found to be at fault.
  • In a no-fault state, everyone gets reimbursed through PIP coverage and there are no lawsuits for additional claims.

Auto insurance is required in some fashion in almost every state. While state requirements vary, the type of insurance you can get is fairly uniform. In addition to the typical auto insurance coverage most people carry, there are several optional plans that can cater to different needs. A good rule of thumb to have when shopping for car insurance is to look at what suits your personal needs, and not what other people are getting. (For more information, read our “How much auto insurance do you need?“).

Read more: Which states require auto insurance?

Sometimes the cost of car insurance is somewhat mandated by the state and other times the state allows free rate competition pricing. Regardless of your location, there are various methods to lower your rates and cut costs on your auto insurance, one of which involves identifying the top auto insurance providers by state.

Knowing how car insurance premiums work will help you save. At, auto insurance help is ready and waiting for you.

Learn more about the types of auto insurance coverage in the article below, but first, enter your ZIP code into our FREE quote tool above for car insurance rates near you.

What is required in terms of auto insurance coverage?

Even if your state requires auto insurance, sometimes you don’t need to purchase an auto insurance policy. Typically, liability or PIP is what is mandated, with different limits set by different states. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) provides an outline of state laws.

Depending on the state where you live, you may be able to satisfy minimum liability requirements through proof of financial responsibility.

Proving financial responsibility through self-insurance is usually done by purchasing a bond from an insurance company or a surety company. The cost is usually the amount of the minimum liability requirements of the state.

Another way to satisfy the financial responsibility requirement is to make a cash deposit with the state treasurer to satisfy the minimum requirement.

Whatever method you choose to meet the state’s auto insurance requirements, it’s necessary to carry proper legal proof with you at all times while driving.v

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What is the difference between a tort state and an at-fault state?

Every state mandates its own auto insurance requirements, which can vary greatly depending on whether it’s a fault state or a no-fault state. There are a few states that allow you to choose between the two.

In a fault state, which is also known as a tort state, one of the parties in an accident is generally found to be at fault, and this person’s insurance company is responsible for the payment of damages.

In these cases, many times lawsuits are filed in order to request additional claims for property or medical injury.

Due to the increase in lawsuits, about a dozen states became no-fault states, eliminating the majority of potentially frivolous and costly lawsuits. In a no-fault state, everyone’s insurance pays for their own insured’s medical damages.

In a no-fault state, everyone gets reimbursed in a timely manner through their Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage from their own insurance company and no one sues the other party for additional claims. Lawsuits, however, can be filed if a medical injury or monetary loss is extreme.

Ready to start saving money on your auto insurance rates? Find the cheapest to average cost of auto insurance rates by entering your ZIP code now.

What are some of the various types of auto insurance?

There are several types of auto insurance policies that can cover a wide range of areas for your protection and convenience. The most common policy that most auto insurers offer is liability, and that’s what is usually required by state law.

Liability basically covers bodily injury and property damage and is paid out to the victim by the insurance company of the person who is found to be at fault for the accident. It’s also important to keep track of the driving laws in your state.

Liability is made up of three amounts, usually referred to with three numbers such as 25/50/10, for the minimum dollar amount requirements.

The first number represents the thousands of dollars covered for bodily injury for one victim in the accident. The second number denotes the total maximum coverage for two or more victims injured. The third number is usually smaller because that addresses property damage, whether it’s vehicular, or to landscaping, fencing, or housing.

Liability only pays out to the victim when the insured person was at fault.

The insured person who is found at fault does not receive compensation from his own liability coverage. Learn more about collision and comprehensive coverage in the section below.

Read more: Cheap Liability Auto Insurance

What are the differences between collision and comprehensive?

To receive coverage for damage to your car in an accident for which you’re found at fault, you need to carry collision insurance. Collision is an optional form of coverage with most major insurers, but it’s usually mandatory by banks or leasing companies for newer vehicles that are financed or leased.

Collision will cover damages to your car no matter who is at fault for an accident. Many people drop this insurance when their car gets older and it’s no longer considered worth insuring against damages.

Just as collision is an optional policy, so is comprehensive. Again, newer vehicles that are not owned outright are usually required to carry comprehensive coverage while the car is being financed or leased.

What does comprehensive coverage cover on a car? A host of potential hazards, including theft, vandalism, fire, and more.

While collision provides insurance for damages caused by another vehicle, comprehensive provides insurance for all other types of incidents.

Read more: Best Auto Insurance for a Leased Vehicle

Is there such a thing as uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage?

What happens when an uninsured driver hits an insured driver? Unfortunately, this happens more than we’d like. It’s why uninsured/underinsured coverage is so popular.

Some states do not require uninsured or underinsured motorist auto insurance, but it is usually recommended.

Uninsured and underinsured are usually sold together under one policy, but they can sometimes be purchased separately as well.

Although all states require auto insurance, not everyone is compliant and therefore there is always the possibility that you could be struck by an uninsured or an underinsured motorist, leaving you to contend with the cost of all of your damages.

Uninsured and underinsured coverage usually covers you and the passengers in your car. You can also purchase uninsured and underinsured motorist insurance for property damage to cover damages to your vehicle. Read on for information on personal injury protection and medical coverage.

Read more: What happens if you don’t have Auto Insurance?

Is there such a thing as personal injury protection and medical coverage?

Personal Injury Protection (PIP) is required in no-fault states to cover your own medical damages in the event of an accident. Even when PIP is not required, it can be purchased optionally for people who seek insurance protection for bodily injury resulting from an auto accident.

Drivers or carpool passengers without health insurance are usually good candidates for this type of coverage. A breakdown of Personal Injury Protection can be seen in the video below.

Another option for medical coverage is a Medical Payments policy, which provides protection in the event you are injured in a vehicular accident either while in a car or on foot (For more information, read our “What is medical payments coverage in car insurance?“).

In addition to paying for medical and/or hospital expenses, coverage usually includes earnings compensation for lost work time. Accidental Death and Dismemberment can be purchased optionally as well.

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Are there any additional auto insurance options?

Most major insurers offer more than just one level of coverage. It’s up to you to look into what they provide and what you’ll need to protect yourself. Now let’s look at some of the other types of auto insurance that are available.

What is gap insurance?

Owners of newer vehicles are usually given the option of purchasing Loan or Lease Gap insurance. In order to buy this coverage, you must also carry comprehensive and collision. Automobiles depreciate in value very quickly, which can be extra troublesome if your new vehicle is damaged in an accident while it’s still being financed or leased.

If the car is totaled and you don’t have Loan or Lease Gap insurance, you may discover that your insurance policy will not pay out enough to cover the balance you still owe on the car, which means you’ll be making car payments for a car you no longer have. Loan or Lease Gap insurance is available to reduce your loss in this type of circumstance.

Is there any sort of rental car reimbursement?

Most auto insurance policies go with you and usually include coverage in a rental car. However, if you’re in an accident and your car needs to be repaired, the cost of the rental car is typically out of pocket.

For a small increase in your premium, you can purchase a policy that covers Rental Car Reimbursement. Additionally, you can buy Towing and Labor coverage, which would also provide you with emergency roadside assistance. (For more information, read our “Will my Auto Insurance cover a rental car?“).

Is there coverage for custom parts and equipment?

Custom parts and equipment is a separate policy that can be purchased to cover any of your aftermarket accessories. Some of these include brush guards, running boards, specialized lighting, custom paint jobs, and installed entertainment systems. Coverage would not apply to items that can be easily taken out of the vehicle, such as a laptop or portable DVD player.

There is no easy answer to questions like, “What are the 10 best insurance companies?” or “What are the worst insurance companies?” The reason being is that there are so many variables. Not including the types of coverage you can pay for, but also personal factors as well. Your marital status, your driving record, what type of car you own, the age of the vehicle, and even how old you are can affect what you’re going to pay and what you’ll be required to have on your vehicle. However, we offer a free list of car insurance companies with reviews.

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How can you manage auto insurance rates?

If you have an auto, you have to have auto insurance. While you may not always have a lot of say in how much your premium will cost, there are some things you can do to be sure you’re paying the lowest premium possible while still receiving excellent coverage.

The first step to saving money on auto insurance is to understand what options are available and how they pertain to your unique situation.

Some policies that are commonly carried by other people may not suit your needs, while some coverage that most people don’t know about may be essential to your daily living.

Review all of your options and determine what you absolutely need and then decide how much additional coverage you can afford.

The basic minimums are only minimums and usually not enough to satisfy claims. If you can increase your coverage beyond the minimums, it’s a good idea to do so.

The national average cost of a liability-only policy, according to the NAIC, is $51/month.

You can reduce your premium by raising your deductible to something that’s manageable and comfortable for you. The higher your deductible, the more you’ll pay out of pocket in the event of a claim, but the less you’ll pay annually in premiums.

Take advantage of all discounts offered by your insurance company. You can usually qualify for multiple savings, including multi-car discounts, multi-policy discounts, anti-theft discounts, automobile safety discounts, good driving discounts, and good student discounts.

Check with your agent to make sure you’re getting every discount for which you’re qualified and follow up on a semi-annual basis in case there are any changes.

Rates between insurance companies can differ greatly depending on your area and the company you decide to go with. The table below shows average rates by state for the top 10 car insurance companies.

StateAverage by StateState FarmAllstateAmerican FamilyFarmersGeicoLiberty MutualNationwideProgressiveTravelersUSAA
Alabama$3,566.96$4,798.15$3,311.52Data Not Available$4,185.80$2,866.60$4,005.48$2,662.66$4,450.52$3,697.80$2,124.09
Alaska$3,421.51$2,228.12$3,145.31$4,153.07Data Not Available$2,879.96$5,295.55Data Not Available$3,062.85Data Not Available$2,454.21
Arizona$3,770.97$4,756.25$4,904.10Data Not Available$5,000.08$2,264.71Data Not Available$3,496.08$3,577.50$3,084.74$3,084.29
Arkansas$4,124.98$2,789.03$5,150.03Data Not Available$4,257.87$3,484.63Data Not Available$3,861.79$5,312.09$5,973.33$2,171.06
California$3,688.93$4,202.28$4,532.96Data Not Available$4,998.78$2,885.65$3,034.42$4,653.19$2,849.67$3,349.54$2,693.87
Colorado$3,876.39$3,270.77$5,537.17$3,733.02$5,290.24$3,091.69$2,797.74$3,739.47$4,231.92Data Not Available$3,338.87
Connecticut$4,618.92$2,976.24$5,831.60Data Not AvailableData Not Available$3,073.66$7,282.87$3,672.34$4,920.35$6,004.29$3,190.00
Delaware$5,986.32$4,466.85$6,316.06Data Not AvailableData Not Available$3,727.29$18,360.02$4,330.21$4,181.83$4,182.36$2,325.98
District of Columbia$4,439.24$4,074.05$6,468.92Data Not AvailableData Not Available$3,692.81Data Not Available$4,848.98$4,970.26Data Not Available$2,580.44
Florida$4,680.46$3,397.67$7,440.46Data Not AvailableData Not Available$3,783.63$5,368.15$4,339.60$5,583.30Data Not Available$2,850.41
Georgia$4,966.83$3,384.88$4,210.70Data Not AvailableData Not Available$2,977.20$10,053.44$6,484.90$4,499.22Data Not Available$3,157.46
Hawaii$2,555.64$1,040.28$2,173.49Data Not Available$4,763.82$3,358.86$3,189.55$2,551.83$2,177.93Data Not Available$1,189.35
Idaho$2,979.09$1,867.96$4,088.76$3,728.79$3,168.28$2,770.68$2,301.51$3,032.19Data Not Available$3,226.29$1,877.61
Indiana$3,414.97$2,408.94$3,978.81$3,679.68$3,437.55$2,261.07$5,781.35Data Not Available$3,898.00$3,393.75$1,630.86
Kentucky$5,195.40$3,354.32$7,143.92Data Not AvailableData Not Available$4,633.59$5,930.97$5,503.23$5,547.63$6,551.68$2,897.89
Louisiana$5,711.34$4,579.12$5,998.79Data Not AvailableData Not Available$6,154.60Data Not AvailableData Not Available$7,471.10Data Not Available$4,353.12
Maine$2,953.28$2,198.68$3,675.59Data Not Available$2,770.15$2,823.05$4,331.39Data Not Available$3,643.59$2,252.97$1,930.79
Maryland$4,582.70$3,960.87$5,233.17Data Not AvailableData Not Available$3,832.63$9,297.55$2,915.69$4,094.86Data Not Available$2,744.14
Massachusetts$2,678.85$1,361.86$2,708.53Data Not AvailableData Not Available$1,510.17$4,339.35Data Not Available$3,835.11$3,537.94$1,458.99
Michigan$10,498.64$12,565.52$22,902.59Data Not Available$8,503.60$6,430.11$20,000.04$6,327.38$5,364.55$8,773.97$3,620.00
Minnesota$4,403.25$2,066.99$4,532.01$3,521.29$3,137.45$3,498.54$13,563.61$2,926.49Data Not AvailableData Not Available$2,861.60
Mississippi$3,664.57$2,980.48$4,942.11Data Not AvailableData Not Available$4,087.21$4,455.94$2,756.53$4,308.85$3,729.32$2,056.13
Missouri$3,328.93$2,692.91$4,096.15$3,286.90$4,312.19$2,885.33$4,518.67$2,265.35$3,419.14Data Not Available$2,525.78
Montana$3,220.84$2,417.74$4,672.10Data Not Available$3,907.55$3,602.35$1,326.11$3,478.26$4,330.76Data Not Available$2,031.89
Nebraska$3,283.68$2,438.71$3,198.83$2,215.13$3,997.29$3,837.49$6,241.52$2,603.94$3,758.01Data Not Available$2,330.78
New Hampshire$3,151.77$2,185.46$2,725.01Data Not AvailableData Not Available$1,615.02$8,444.41$2,491.10$2,694.45Data Not Available$1,906.96
New Jersey$5,515.21$7,527.16$5,713.58Data Not Available$7,617.00$2,754.94$6,766.62Data Not Available$3,972.72$4,254.49Data Not Available
New Mexico$3,463.64$2,340.66$4,200.65Data Not Available$4,315.53$4,458.30Data Not Available$3,514.38$3,119.18Data Not Available$2,296.77
New York$4,289.88$4,484.58$4,740.97Data Not AvailableData Not Available$2,428.24$6,540.73$4,012.93$3,771.15$4,578.79$3,761.69
North Carolina$3,393.11$3,078.65$7,190.43Data Not AvailableData Not Available$2,936.69$2,182.71$2,848.03$2,382.61$3,132.66Data Not Available
North Dakota$4,165.84$2,560.53$4,669.31$3,812.40$3,092.49$2,668.24$12,852.83$2,560.35$3,623.06Data Not Available$2,006.80
Oklahoma$4,142.33$2,816.80$3,718.62Data Not Available$4,142.40$3,437.34$6,874.62Data Not Available$4,832.35Data Not Available$3,174.15
Pennsylvania$4,034.50$2,744.23$3,984.12Data Not AvailableData Not Available$2,605.22$6,055.20$2,800.37$4,451.00$7,842.47$1,793.37
Rhode Island$5,003.36$2,406.51$4,959.45Data Not AvailableData Not Available$5,602.63$6,184.12$4,409.63$5,231.09$6,909.45$4,323.98
South Carolina$3,781.14$3,071.34$3,903.43Data Not Available$4,691.85$3,178.01Data Not Available$3,625.49$4,573.08Data Not Available$3,424.77
South Dakota$3,982.27$2,306.23$4,723.72$4,047.47$3,768.80$2,940.29$7,515.99$2,737.66$3,752.81Data Not AvailableData Not Available
Tennessee$3,660.89$2,639.30$4,828.85Data Not Available$3,430.07$3,283.42$6,206.69$3,424.96$3,656.91$2,738.52$2,739.28
Texas$4,043.28$2,879.94$5,485.44$4,848.72Data Not Available$3,263.28Data Not Available$3,867.55$4,664.69Data Not Available$2,487.89
Utah$3,611.89$4,645.83$3,566.42$3,698.77$3,907.99$2,965.57$4,327.76$2,986.57$3,830.10Data Not Available$2,491.10
Vermont$3,234.13$4,382.84$3,190.38Data Not AvailableData Not Available$2,195.71$3,621.08$2,128.21$5,217.14Data Not Available$1,903.55
Virginia$2,357.87$2,268.95$3,386.80Data Not AvailableData Not Available$2,061.53Data Not Available$2,073.00$2,498.58Data Not Available$1,858.38
Washington$3,059.32$2,499.78$3,540.52$3,713.02$2,962.00$2,568.65$3,994.73$2,129.84$3,209.52Data Not Available$2,262.16
West Virginia$2,595.36$2,126.32$3,820.68Data Not AvailableData Not Available$2,120.80$2,924.39Data Not AvailableData Not AvailableData Not Available$1,984.62
Wisconsin$3,606.06$2,387.53$4,854.41$1,513.27$3,777.49$3,926.20$6,758.85$5,224.99$3,128.91Data Not Available$2,975.74
Wyoming$3,200.08$2,303.55$4,373.93Data Not Available$3,069.35$3,496.56$1,989.36$3,187.20$4,401.17Data Not Available$2,779.53

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Who has the cheapest car insurance? As you can see, State Farm auto insurance rates are much different from Progressive and USAA’s car insurance rates. The best auto insurance company for you depends on your needs.

Can you get free auto insurance quotes online?

Auto insurance is required for your financial protection. Be sure you are adequately covered not just for state requirements, but for your own needs as well. While you’re committed to having auto insurance, you’re not committed to your insurance agent, so shop around to be sure you’re getting cheap car insurance with the most protection. There are plenty of coverage options out there, so stopping after the first one isn’t going to net you the most competitive rates.

A question you may find yourself asking is which insurance company is best for car insurance? It’s not a simple question to answer because there are so many personal factors that go into finding the right fit. Because there are so many different companies out there with wide coverage levels, the best thing for you to do is shop around.

However, you can check out the top 10 auto insurance companies in the USA and more with our reviews. Now that you know more about the different types of auto insurance, get quotes for auto insurance rates by entering your ZIP code into our FREE tool.