Is New Hampshire a No-Fault State?

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  • Is New Hampshire a No-Fault State?

New Hampshire isn’t a no-fault state, and in fact, drivers aren’t required to carry coverage at all. While the Granite State isn’t a no-fault state, drivers still have the opportunity to add no-fault coverage to their auto insurance policies in the form of a first-party medical benefit (FPMB) called medical payments coverage (MedPay). 

Let’s check out why New Hampshire isn’t a no-fault state, how drivers receive insurance benefits following an accident, and what coverages residents must have on their New Hampshire car insurance policies

Is New Hampshire a No-Fault State?

New Hampshire auto insurance is treated on an at-fault basis rather than a no-fault one. In fact, those with a clean driving record may opt out of purchasing an insurance policy if they can prove financial responsibility in an at-fault accident. Those who don’t have enough savings to cover the expenses of an at-fault accident without a policy, or those who’ve proven they’re a liability on the road without a policy, may be required to carry a policy that mainly contains at-fault coverage.

No-fault states typically mandate drivers to carry an FPMB on their policies to cover the medical expenses they incur in an accident. In an at-fault or tort state, drivers are typically required to have liability coverage, which extends to the victim in an accident where the policyholder is at fault. 

New Hampshire is a tort state, meaning fault must be assigned to one driver for the victim to recover benefits from the policyholder’s liability coverage. However, since auto insurance isn’t required in New Hampshire, many drivers who opt for a policy or who are required to have one typically carry a high limit of uninsured or underinsured motorist bodily injury coverage (UMBI/UIMBI)

The minimum legal amount of coverage for those who require an auto insurance policy in the Granite State is $25,000 in bodily injury liability per person, $50,000 in bodily injury liability per accident, $25,000 in property damage liability per accident (25/50/25 liability coverage), $25,000 in UMBI/UIMBI per person, $50,000 in UMBI/UIMBI per accident (25/50 UMBI/UIMBI) and $1,000 in MedPay. Those who finance or lease their vehicles may be required to have full coverage policies with collision and comprehensive coverages as part of their legally binding agreement.

While drivers who require a minimum coverage policy must have a minimum limit of MedPay, New Hampshire is still considered an at-fault state. Sometimes, at-fault states will require residents to carry an FPMB, especially in the case of New Hampshire, where the population of uninsured drivers is comparably higher than the national average. The number of uninsured drivers in the Granite State is also why residents who require a policy must have UMBI/UIMBI, as this coverage helps the policyholder cover their medical expenses if they’re injured in an accident caused by an uninsured driver.

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Does New Hampshire Have No-Fault Car Insurance?

In New Hampshire, no-fault insurance is available to residents through MedPay. Drivers with a minimum coverage policy have a limit of $1,000 in MedPay. Still, those with full coverage policies may opt for a higher coverage limit. 

In a no-fault state, drivers typically rely on themselves to cover their medical expenses since the fault may not be assigned immediately, making it more time-consuming to file a claim with liability coverage. An FPMB like MedPay helps the policyholder cover their medical expenses in an accident, regardless of who was at fault. However, drivers rely on each other for coverage in a tort state like New Hampshire, which can get dicey, considering car insurance isn’t legally required. 

If an at-fault driver can’t pay the expenses they owe the victim, the victim may be able to sue the at-fault driver for damages. New Hampshire is a modified comparative fault state, which is just a fancy way of saying drivers more than 50% at fault in an accident can’t recover any insurance benefits, nor can they sue other drivers. In the same vein, if drivers share the fault 70/30, the driver who bears 30% of the fault may only recover up to 70% of their insurance benefits. 

While drivers with minimum coverage policies heavily rely on other drivers when it comes to insurance benefits, those with full coverage policies don’t need to worry as much. A full coverage policy in the Granite State will typically contain liability coverage, UMBI/UIMBI coverage, a higher limit of MedPay than what’s legally required, uninsured or underinsured motorist property damage coverage (UMPD/UIMPD), collision coverage, comprehensive coverage, and GAP coverage, among other coverage types. The average cost of a full coverage policy in New Hampshire is about $1,210 annually, making it one of the cheapest states for auto insurance premiums. 

A minimum coverage policy can protect drivers in several scenarios, especially an unfortunate encounter with someone driving without insurance. Still, it may not protect policyholders in every scenario. While sacrificing coverage in the name of savings can be tempting, especially when it’s legal, it may not always be the wisest money move. Since New Hampshire is one of the cheapest states for auto insurance, it’s easy for many drivers to bind a policy from one of the state’s top insurers without breaking the bank. Typically, the annual cost of a premium is far less than the expenses associated with an at-fault accident, and premiums are far easier to budget for.

Why Is New Hampshire an At-Fault State?

New Hampshire doesn’t have a no-fault law, making it an at-fault state when it comes to car accidents. This means that for drivers to recover insurance benefits following an accident, at least one driver must be considered at fault. Then, accident victims default to using the at-fault driver’s liability coverage, should they have a policy, to cover their medical expenses or vehicle repairs. Should the at-fault driver be uninsured but the victim has a policy, the victim would use their UMBI/UIMBI coverage. Should both parties be uninsured, well, they’re out of luck and a lot of money.

States typically enact no-fault laws for several reasons, all entwined with the state’s population. If a state has a high population, densely populated cities, or many uninsured drivers, lawmakers may enact a no-fault law or mandate no-fault coverage. Since New Hampshire has a higher-than-average number of uninsured drivers, residents who must have coverage must have MedPay, a no-fault FPMB. However, the state is not very populated, so enacting a no-fault law is unnecessary. 

How To Get New Hampshire Car Insurance Quotes

Whether you’re searching for a minimum coverage policy from an insurer with lower-than-average rates or a policy with several optional coverages added on, the best way to find a policy that meets your needs is to get and compare quotes online. By getting and comparing quotes from the state’s top insurers, you can tailor your policy to suit your lifestyle and budget.

Luckily, here at Clovered, quotes are our specialty. We even have a free quoting tool you can use to access your unique quotes in minutes. If you prefer to speak with a professional about your quote, one of our licensed agents would be happy to assist you at 833-255-4117 or

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The editorial content on Clovered’s website is meant to be informational material and should not be considered legal advice.

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