What Are the Minimum Car Insurance Requirements in Georgia?
- What Are the Minimum Car Insurance Requirements in Georgia?
From Savannah to Atlanta, natural wonders to the big city, drivers must always carry the minimum required car insurance when setting out to see the many wonders of the Peach State. All car insurance policies in Georgia must meet the legal requirements and those that do not may be subject to legal consequences.
Keep reading to discover the Georgia auto insurance requirements and answers to some frequently asked questions about the state’s car insurance laws.
What Are the Minimum Car Insurance Requirements in Georgia?
In Georgia, car insurance requirements mandate drivers to have at least $25,000 of bodily injury liability per person, $50,000 of bodily injury liability per accident, and $25,000 of property damage liability per accident, otherwise stated as 25/50/25 liability coverage on auto insurance policies. If you lease or finance your vehicle, your lender or leaser may require you to have comprehensive and collision coverage on your policy as part of your legally binding agreement.
Failure to comply with Georgia insurance laws may result in legal penalties like fines, license suspension, or vehicle suspension. Some may even face jail time for more severe cases of driving without insurance in the state.
While carrying 25/50/25 liability coverage and any other coverages you’re legally required to have will protect you from legal penalties, you may not feel sufficiently protected on the road with such minimal coverage. Drivers who don’t feel fully covered by a minimum coverage policy may opt for a full coverage policy instead. A full coverage policy will be much more expansive and provide drivers peace of mind in many scenarios.
What You Need To Know About Georgia Car Insurance Laws
The new Georgia car insurance laws state all drivers must have at least 25/50/25 liability coverage on their policies, but that is the only required coverage type in the state. Drivers who lease or finance their cars may be required to have collision and comprehensive coverage as part of their legally binding agreement with their lender.
The car insurance laws in the Peach State are relatively minimal compared to other states. Since Georgia is a tort state, meaning all accidents are treated on an at-fault basis, drivers are only required to carry liability coverage to cover other drivers on the road. Wholesome folks may appreciate such minimal requirements, but having a minimum coverage policy may not always be in the policyholder’s best interest.
Let’s examine how Georgia insurance regulations play out in an accident.
Georgia Car Accident Laws Explained
Georgia insurance laws maintain that all accidents must be treated on an at-fault basis and, more specifically, a comparative-fault basis. This means that Georgia is not a no-fault state and that drivers will be assigned the appropriate amount of fault in an accident so that they may receive insurance benefits based on this assignment. Drivers who are 50% at fault or below for an accident may be eligible for insurance benefits.
For example, say two drivers fail to stop at a four-way stop and hit each other as a result. In this scenario, the fault will be split 50/50. Both drivers will be eligible to receive insurance benefits from each other’s liability coverage as long as each driver has appropriate coverage.
In another scenario, one driver runs a red light while intoxicated and hits another driver who fails to turn on their blinker while merging. In this scenario, the drunk driver will likely be about 70% at fault, possibly even more, for the accident. Thus, they will be ineligible to receive any liability coverage from the other driver and will be liable for their expenses and the other driver’s expenses incurred from the accident.
If the at-fault party in an accident is uninsured, the victim of the accident may be able to sue them for any owed expenses if they don’t carry uninsured motorist coverage. Uninsured drivers in the Peach State are liable to pay any owed expenses to victims of accidents they cause and will likely face legal consequences like fines, license or registration suspension, or jail time.
What Is the Minimum Auto Insurance Coverage in Georgia?
The minimum car insurance in Georgia is 25/50/25 liability coverage and any coverages required by your lender or leaser if you finance or lease your vehicle. Those who fail to comply with the auto insurance laws in the state may face consequences as severe as jail time.
Georgia doesn’t require much auto insurance coverage compared to other states, especially states with no-fault laws. Some other states require drivers to have a first-party medical benefit like personal injury protection (PIP) or coverages that are optional in the Peach State, like personal property insurance (PPI) and uninsured motorist coverage (UM).
Drivers may have to compromise on their policies, especially if they value cost and coverage equally. Typically, those who value cost over coverage select a liability-only policy, and drivers who value coverage over cost create a full coverage policy that caters to their needs.
What Is Full Coverage Insurance in Georgia?
Since Georgia insurance requirements only mandate drivers to have 25/50/25 liability coverage on their policies, any policy with a higher liability limit and additional coverages is considered a full coverage policy in the state.
Although full coverage isn’t required, a policy with additional coverage that directly protects the policyholder may help policyholders feel safer on the Peach State’s roads. Drivers that have a higher liability limit, some form of UM coverage, a first-party medical benefit like medical payments coverage (MedPay), and collision and comprehensive coverages on their auto insurance policies are much more prepared for any scenario than a driver that only has the minimum amount of car insurance required in the state.
Georgia Minimum Liability Coverage Explained
The Georgia bodily injury minimum is $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident, plus a minimum of $25,000 of property damage liability coverage, expressed in the required 25/50/25 liability limit in the state. Those with at least this amount of liability coverage are adequately insured under the eyes of the law but may not feel sufficiently covered when it comes to an at-fault accident.
Liability coverage protects other drivers on the road when the policyholder causes an accident. If the policyholder causes an accident that injures another driver, the victim of the accident will file a claim with the policyholder’s liability coverage to receive financial assistance for their medical expenses.
Policyholders with only liability coverage must rely on other drivers for adequate insurance coverage should another driver injure the policyholder in an at-fault accident. If the policyholder only has liability coverage and is injured in an accident caused by an uninsured driver, the policyholder’s only option for financial assistance for their medical bills or vehicle repairs is to sue the uninsured driver. In many cases, drivers feel more protected carrying at least collision coverage and a first-party medical benefit like MedPay.
Georgia State Minimum Car Insurance FAQs
When it comes to the required car insurance in Georgia, and in any state for that matter, there’s always a bit of confusion about the ins and outs of these laws. While Georgia’s laws are less convoluted than those in other states, you may still have lingering questions about the regulations. Let’s examine the nitty gritty details of the Peach State’s car insurance mandates.
Does Insurance Follow the Car or Driver in Georgia?
In Georgia, most car insurance coverages follow the car. Your required liability coverage follows your vehicle, along with collision coverage, comprehensive coverage, and some types of UM coverage. This means that regardless of who’s driving the policyholder’s car, as long as they have the policyholder’s permission, the driver is covered by the policyholder’s auto insurance.
One of the only types of coverage that follow the driver instead of the car is a first-party medical benefit, like MedPay. This means only the policyholder and the named insureds on their policy can receive benefits from MedPay.
Is Car Insurance Required in Georgia?
All Georgians must have at least 25/50/25 liability coverage on their policies. This means that a minimum amount of auto insurance is required by law. Those who do not meet the required limit or lack auto insurance entirely may face legal penalties such as fines, license or registration suspension, and possibly even jail time.
Is Car Insurance Mandatory in Georgia?
Yes, car insurance is mandatory in Georgia by state law. Drivers must have at least $25,000 of bodily injury liability per person, $50,000 of bodily injury liability per accident, and $25,000 of property damage liability per accident, also known as 25/50/25 liability coverage. While liability coverage is the only car insurance mandated by law, it may not cover everything you need from your policy. Many drivers feel the most affordable policy in the state is not always the best policy for them. Paying higher premiums for more coverage often pays off in the long run.
Do You Need Car Insurance in Georgia?
Yes, all drivers in the Peach State need car insurance that meets the state’s minimum legal requirements. All Georgians must have at least 25/50/25 liability coverage on their policies and anything legally required by a leasing or financing agreement.
While a minimum coverage policy is perfectly legal, you may lack protection in many scenarios with just liability coverage. Compromising between cost and coverage doesn’t have to mean sacrificing all your coverage just to save a few hundred dollars every year. Here at Clovered, we highly recommend finding a full coverage policy from one of the best insurers in the state that offers low base rates and plenty of discounts. This way, you can save on your premiums while maintaining expansive protection on the road.
Auto Insurance in Georgia Quotes
The average full coverage premium in the Peach State is about $1,780, meaning the average minimum coverage policy is about $900, give or take a few dollars. While a minimum coverage policy may bring you some short-term savings and keep you legally protected on the road, it may not provide the best protection for all drivers. The best way to find a policy that meets the legal limits in Georgia and provides the coverage you need at the price you want is to get and compare quotes online from several insurers.
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The editorial content on Clovered’s website is meant to be informational material and should not be considered legal advice.