How much car insurance do I need?

Have you ever asked the question, how much car insurance do I need? The minimum car insurance coverage you need depends on the state. But the most common coverage level is 25/50/25. However, auto insurance companies may recommend 50/100/50 limits. Liability is required, but drivers who make payments on their car need full coverage. Shop around and compare multiple insurance companies to secure the best rates.

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UPDATED: Jun 28, 2022

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Written By: Chris TepedinoReviewed By: Laura WalkerUPDATED: Jun 28, 2022Fact Checked

The Rundown

  • Most states have minimum car insurance requirements of 25/50/25
  • The recommended coverage limits are 50/100/50
  • Liability-only coverage is $48/month

Have you ever wondered, how much car insurance do I need? Getting the car insurance coverage you need isn’t as difficult as it seems.

So how much auto insurance coverage do you need? Don’t worry – we’re here to answer your questions.

Our guide details the amount of car insurance you need and which companies provide affordable rates for minimum coverage.

After you learn more about how much car insurance coverage you need, use our free online quote tool above to compare multiple insurance companies near you.

How much car insurance coverage do I need?

The amount of auto insurance coverage you need depends on the state in which you live.

The minimum auto insurance requirement is liability insurance coverage. Depending on the state, your liability insurance may include two or more coverages.

With liability auto insurance, you’ll have a coverage limit. How much coverage do you need for auto insurance? Check out the list below to see the minimum vehicle insurance requirements for each state.

Minimum Car Insurance Requirements by State
StateInsurance RequiredMinimum Liability Limits
ALBI & PD Liab25/50/25
AKBI & PD Liab50/100/25
AZBI & PD Liab15/30/10
ARBI & PD Liab, PIP25/50/25
CABI & PD Liab15/30/5
COBI & PD Liab25/50/15
CTBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/20
DEBI & PD Liab, PIP25/50/10
DCBI & PD Liab, UM25/50/10
FLPD Liab, PIP10/20/10
GABI & PD Liab25/50/25
HIBI & PD Liab, PIP20/40/10
IDBI & PD Liab25/50/15
ILBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/20
INBI & PD Liab25/50/25
IABI & PD Liab20/40/15
KSBI & PD Liab, PIP25/50/25
KYBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM25/50/25
LABI & PD Liab15/30/25
MEBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM, Medpay50/100/25
MDBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM30/60/15
MABI & PD Liab, PIP20/40/5
MIBI & PD Liab, PIP20/40/10
MNBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM30/60/10
MSBI & PD Liab25/50/25
MOBI & PD Liab, UM25/50/25
MTBI & PD Liab25/50/20
NEBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/25
NVBI & PD Liab25/50/20
NHFR only25/50/25
NJBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM15/30/5
NMBI & PD Liab25/50/10
NYBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM25/50/10
NCBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM30/60/25
NDBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM25/50/25
OHBI & PD Liab25/50/25
OKBI & PD Liab25/50/25
ORBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM25/50/20
PABI & PD Liab, PIP15/30/5
RIBI & PD Liab25/50/25
SCBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/25
SDBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/25
TNBI & PD Liab25/50/15
TXBI & PD Liab, PIP30/60/25
UTBI & PD Liab, PIP25/65/15
VTBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/10
VABI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/20
WABI & PD Liab25/50/10
WVBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/25
WIBI & PD Liab, UM, Medpay25/50/10
WYBI & PD Liab25/50/20
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You’ll notice that coverage limits are abbreviated. For example, 25/50/25 stands for $25,000 for bodily injury of one person per accident, $50,000 for bodily injury of multiple people per accident, and $25,000 for property damage per accident.

Uninsured Motorist (UM) and Underinsured Motorist (UIM) insurance includes the same bodily injury coverage limit.

What are the recommended car insurance policy limits?

Sometimes the minimum coverage limit isn’t enough. The best insurance companies recommend raising your coverage level to avoid depleting your coverage limits.

So how much auto insurance do you really need? Here are the recommended limits for drivers:

  • $50,000 for bodily injury person per accident
  • $100,000 for total bodily injury per accident
  • $50,000 for property damage per accident

The abbreviation for this coverage level is 50/100/50. You may see this listed as a medium coverage level. High coverage levels usually consist of 100/300/100 as coverage limits.

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What car insurance coverages do I need?

The amount of auto insurance coverage you need depends on your location. Some states have similar minimum coverage limits, but they’re unique in some way.

However, most drivers only need liability car insurance, which includes bodily injury liability and property damage liability.

Some states include uninsured/underinsured (UM/UIM) motorist coverage  as part of their minimum requirements.

Meanwhile, a handful of states have personal injury protection (PIP) or medical payments (MedPay) attached to their state’s minimum requirements.

Which states require you to carry UM/UIM car insurance coverage?

Most auto insurance companies recommend UM/UIM auto insurance. However, some areas in the United States require you to have UM/UIM coverage.

Here is a list of states that mandate UM/UIM car insurance coverage:

  • Connecticut
  • District of Columbia
  • Illinois
  • Kentucky
  • Maine
  • Maryland
  • Minnesota
  • Missouri
  • Nebraska
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Oregon
  • South Carolina
  • South Dakota
  • Vermont
  • Virginia
  • West Virginia
  • Wisconsin

Twenty states require UM/UIM car insurance for drivers. However, we recommend that you add UM/UIM coverage to your auto insurance policy.

Which states require PIP?

Personal injury protection (PIP) provides extra benefits if you’re injured after an accident and are unable to work. Some states require drivers to have PIP.

Review the list below to discover which states require PIP:

  • Arizona
  • Delaware
  • Florida
  • Hawaii
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • North Dakota
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • Texas
  • Utah

Only 17 states require PIP on car insurance policies. This coverage option can supplement your health insurance and provide more alternatives to cover bills that your health insurance won’t pay.

Which states require you to have MedPay?

There are a handful of states that require medical payments. Here are the three states that require MedPay:

  • Maine
  • Pennsylvania*
  • Wisconsin

Different sources state that MedPay is required. However, the MWL Attorneys at Law reports that MedPay isn’t required in Pennsylvania.

How much are liability car insurance rates?

Liability auto insurance rates vary by state. The more you add to your policy, the higher the monthly car insurance cost.

So how much vehicle liability insurance do you need, and how much does it cost? Let’s examine the monthly car insurance rates based on coverage level.

Average Monthly Car Insurance Rates by Coverage Level
StateState Minimum Liability-OnlyState Minimum with Collision and Comprehensive Coverage ($1K Deductible)100/300/100 with Collision and Comprehensive Coverage ($1K Deductible)
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If you’re making payments on your vehicle, you’ll need full coverage. Most full coverage auto insurance policies come with a deductible due to their connection with collision and comprehensive coverage.

Deductibles are usually attached to collision and comprehensive coverage.

According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), liability-only coverage is $48/month.

A deductible is an amount you pay before an insurance company completes the claim process. The higher your deductible, the less you’ll pay per month for auto insurance.

How much are car insurance rates at the top companies?

If you don’t have auto insurance yet, you should start shopping for coverage right away.

Here’s a list of the best car insurance companies in the United States:

Average Monthly Full Coverage and Liability-Only Car Insurance Rates
CompanyFull Coverage Car Insurance RatesLiability-Only Car Insurance Rates
American Family$113$52
Liberty Mutual$137$52
State Farm$100$41
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USAA is only available to military veterans and their immediate families. But GEICO, Nationwide, and Progressive are affordable car insurance companies you may want to consider.

Should I buy Gap insurance?

Gap insurance isn’t required, but it’s an optional coverage that provides an extra layer of protection after an accident.

Your gap insurance coverage can cover the cost of a vehicle you’re still financing by paying off the difference you owe to either the dealer or the finance company.

While liability insurance and full coverage (in some situations) are required, gap insurance is optional but highly recommended.

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How Much Car Insurance Do You Need: The Bottom Line

The policy limits and coverage options you need depend on where you live. Your auto insurance needs are also based on your vehicle situation.

Liability is the coverage required for most drivers, but anyone who still makes payments on their car must carry full coverage car insurance.

While the minimum auto insurance requirement allows you to drive legally on the roadway, the medium coverage level is recommended.

Now that you know how much car insurance you need, enter your ZIP code in the free online quote tool to compare multiple insurance companies in your area.

Editorial Guidelines: We are a free online resource for anyone interested in learning more about insurance. Our goal is to be an objective, third-party resource for everything insurance related. We update our site regularly, and all content is reviewed by insurance experts.

Chris Tepedino is a feature writer that has written extensively about home, life, and car insurance for numerous websites. He has a college degree in communication from the University of Tennessee and has experience reporting, researching investigative pieces, and crafting detailed, data-driven features. His works have been featured on CB Blog Nation, Flow Words, Healing Law, WIBW Kansas, and C...

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Written by Chris Tepedino
Insurance Feature Writer Chris Tepedino

Laura Walker graduated college with a BS in Criminal Justice with a minor in Political Science. She married her husband and began working in the family insurance business in 2005. She became a licensed agent and wrote P&C business focusing on personal lines insurance for 10 years. Laura serviced existing business and wrote new business. She now uses her insurance background to help educate...

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Reviewed by Laura Walker
Former Licensed Agent Laura Walker

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