Mathew B. Sims is Editor-in-Chief and has authored, edited, and contributed to several books. He has been working in the insurance industry ensuring content is accurate for consumers who are searching for the best policies and rates. He has also been featured on sites like UpJourney.

Full Bio →

Written by

Dan Walker graduated with a BS in Administrative Management in 2005 and has been working in his family’s insurance agency, FCI Agency, for 15 years (BBB A+). He is licensed as an agent to write property and casualty insurance, including home, auto, umbrella, and dwelling fire insurance. He’s also been featured on sites like and Safeco. He reviews content, ensuring that exis...

Full Bio →

Reviewed by Daniel Walker
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Jul 20, 2020

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right coverage choices.

Advertiser Disclosure: We strive to help you make confident insurance decisions. Comparison shopping should be easy. We partner with top insurance providers. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

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

Firefighter Employment Statistics
National Employment Estimate324,620U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
State with the Highest Employment LevelCaliforniaU.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Top Paying StateCaliforniaU.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Average Hourly Wage Estimate$26.27U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Average Annual Wage Estimate$54,650U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Average Annual Auto Insurance Premiums$1,895.80Quadrant Data
Get Your Rates Quote Now

Compare RatesStart Now →

Firefighters are used to just jumping right into the fray of things, and, like all first responders, deserve some special treatment for helping keep the rest of us safe. That’s why a lot of companies offer discounts on car insurance for first responders.

You don’t have time to research all of the types of car insurance discounts that are out there, so we’ve taken care of it for you.

In this article, we’re going to go over what you should expect when shopping for auto insurance for firefighters and other first responders.

We’ll also see just how these rates are calculated and whether you’ll be found at fault for an accident that happens when you’re driving the fire engine.

You can also use our free tool to get a free auto insurance quote and compare the rates offered to you as a firefighter.

Auto Insurance Rates for Firefighters

How much will you expect to pay for that important auto insurance for first responders? With more than a quarter-million firefighters in the country, insurers look at this specific occupation and what the risk will be.

Firefighters pay about $1,895.80 every year for their auto insurance.

That works out to about $157.98 a month — and $947.90 if you pay your premiums in six-month chunks, like a lot of Americans. But, that’s just an estimate.

There are many, many factors that go into how much you’re going to pay for your auto policy. These are varied, but they include your credit score, where you live, and your gender and marital status. We’ll get into that in-depth later on, so keep reading.

Also, your fire department may have some group auto insurance. Though this is rare, you may qualify for some special insurance plan due to your status with the fire department.

It’s always a good idea to check locally first to see if insurance is offered through your department. After doing that, feel free to use our site to compare policies.

Free Auto Insurance Comparison

Enter your zip code below to view companies that have cheap auto insurance rates.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

How Being a Firefighter Affects Your Auto Insurance Rates

Firefighters have an honorable and challenging job that sometimes gets some extra perks that are well deserved.

And, yeah, your fire engine is probably already covered with Volunteer Firemen’s Insurance Services (VFIS) or a similar company. But you need something for when it’s time to drive home or take that well-earned vacation.

Your job can have an impact on your personal car insurance rates. We’ll go over how being a firefighter affects what you pay for auto insurance and more in this article.

Why do auto insurers ask about your occupation?

Your job affects auto insurance, but why?. Everything insurance companies do comes down to risk. They’re in the money-making business, after all. So, if you have a job that’s considered high-risk, they’re going to charge you more.

It may not seem fair, but it’s all about numbers.

If you have a fairly safe (i.e. a low-risk driver) occupation, you’re looking pretty good to them. In that case, you may be eligible for additional discounts. Firefighters may have high-risk jobs, but they’re usually pretty low-risk drivers.

Does law enforcement get discounts on car insurance? And is it the same discount offered to other first responders? They do get discounts on auto insurance for police officers, and we’ll talk more about that a little later in this article.

Should you tell your auto insurance company when you change jobs?

If you’ve just become a firefighter, or if you’ve recently shifted your duties elsewhere, you may be eligible for another discount. You have to update your information with your insurer, just like updating your location when you move.

If you don’t update your information, you risk your policy being invalidated if you make a claim.

How does your job affect your auto insurance?

Many EMT and emergency service personnel need better auto insurance. While there is no one policy that fits everybody, there are many law enforcement insurance discounts for first responders, like FOP auto insurance for police officers and IAFF auto and homeowners insurance for firefighters. Keep these things in mind as you shop and compare.

Remember also that there is a difference between insuring your personal vehicle and the vehicle you drive at work for emergency situations.

Chances are that your fire chief has already taken care of the fire truck and other emergency vehicles that you use each day to do your job. Check with them first to see if this is the case.

Which auto insurance companies offer firefighter discounts?

What insurance companies offer first responder discounts? There are a few companies that offer special rates, specifically for first responders like firefighters. That’s because they’re lower-risk as drivers.

Most firefighters live in the communities where they work, as a necessity for the urgent nature of the job. That means a shorter commute, and they’re usually not doing a nine to five either, so they miss the most-congested hours.

How can I get discounts on auto insurance? These companies offer some kind of a discount to firefighters for auto insurance:

  • California Casualty
  • Country Financial Auto Insurance
  • Farmers Auto Insurance
  • Liberty Mutual Auto Insurance
  • Nationwide Auto Insurance

Not all companies lower your rates based on your job as a firefighter. A State Farm first responder discount doesn’t really exist in most places, but these things change all the time. What discounts does Farmers Insurance offer? They do have occupational discounts in some states – you will need to call and ask what is available where you live.

Here are some occupation-related discounts we found for you:

Occupation-Related Auto Insurance Rate Discounts
CompaniesAuto Insurance Rate Discount
Country Financial10%
Liberty Mutual10%
Get Your Rates Quote Now

Compare RatesStart Now →

Keep in mind that discounts vary by state, and the best way to find what you’re qualified for is to talk to your insurance agent.

Does your annual mileage affect your auto insurance rates as a firefighter?

If you drive a short distance to work, you will get a better rate than if have a lengthy drive. The way insurers see it: the farther you’re driving, the more likely something’s going to happen that may result in an insurance claim.

You can see below that insurers change their rates based on this.

Average Annual Auto Insurance Rates by Commute
Companies10-mile commute.
6,000 annual mileage.
25-mile commute.
12,000 annual mileage.
State Farm$3,175.98$3,344.01
American Family$3,401.30$3,484.88
Liberty Mutual$5,995.27$6,151.63
Get Your Rates Quote Now

Compare RatesStart Now →

For these major insurers, you’re looking at an increase of anywhere from $11 to $168.

Free Auto Insurance Comparison

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Does your credit score affect your auto insurance rates?

Another tip for firefighters looking for auto insurance is to keep your credit score in good condition. According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), Insurance companies can look into your credit rating when determining your auto insurance rates.

Average Annual Auto Insurance Rates by Credit History
CompaniesGood CreditFair CreditPoor Credit
State Farm$2,174.26$2,853.00$4,951.20
American Family$2,691.74$3,169.53$4,467.98
Liberty Mutual$4,388.18$5,604.24$8,802.22
Get Your Rates Quote Now

Compare RatesStart Now →

If your credit rating is good, the insurer knows that it is less likely that you will fail to pay your premiums each month and that you will probably not let your policy lapse.

A good credit score makes you a lower risk to the insurance company.

What other factors do companies consider for your auto insurance?

Other than your commute length, there are other factors that the insurance companies will consider when issuing you a policy.

Some of the most relevant ones include the following:

Age and marital status – These demographics do determine your rate to some extent. Single men have more accidents than married men so you may get a better rate if you are married. Also, age matters when it comes to insurance. Young people (especially males) ages 18-24 have the most severe accidents.

Average Annual Auto Insurances Rates by Marital Status, Age, and Gender
CompaniesSingle 17-year-old femaleSingle 17-year-old maleSingle 25-year-old femaleSingle 25-year-old maleMarried 60-year-old femaleMarried 60-year-old maleMarried 35-year-old femaleMarried 35-year-old male
State Farm$5,953.88$7,324.34$2,335.96$2,554.56$1,873.89$1,873.89$2,081.72$2,081.72
American Family$5,996.50$8,130.50$2,288.65$2,694.72$1,992.92$2,014.38$2,202.70$2,224.31
Liberty Mutual$11,621.01$13,718.69$3,959.67$4,503.13$3,445.00$3,680.53$3,802.77$3,856.84
Get Your Rates Quote Now

Compare RatesStart Now →

This is a big one, especially if you’re with the wrong insurer for you. If you’re a 17-year-old male at Travelers, you can be paying more then five times as much as your 60-year-old female counterpart.

Current driving record – As with any type of auto insurance, this factor is the most important no matter what your age, situation, or occupation. Auto insurance companies check your driving record because if it’s clean, statistics show you will have fewer accidents.

Average Annual Auto Insurance Rates by Driving Record
CompaniesClean recordWith one accidentWith one speeding violationWith one DUI
American Family$2,693.61$3,722.75$3,025.74$4,330.24
State Farm$2,821.18$3,396.01$3,186.01$3,636.80
Liberty Mutual$4,774.30$6,204.78$5,701.26$7,613.48
Get Your Rates Quote Now

Compare RatesStart Now →

Even one accident, DUI, or speeding ticket can raise your rates, and DUI’s raise them the most.

Current policy status – If you keep your insurance policy up to date, you will get better rates. You may see an increase in your policy if you have let your policy lapse, even once.

Auto Insurance Semi-Annual Rate Difference for Lapse of Coverage
CompaniesAverage Semi-Annual Rates – No LapseAverage Semi-Annual Rates – After LapseAverage Semi-Annual Rate Increase
Liberty Mutual$696.00$810.0016.38%
Get Your Rates Quote Now

Compare RatesStart Now →

Liberty Mutual will penalize over 16 percent if you have a coverage lapse, while Nationwide Insurance is right behind them with a 13 percent spike.

Make and model of car – One of the main items you are required to tell the insurance agent when considering a new policy is the make and model of your auto. This is because different cars cost more to insure.

Think about it. If you buy a 2019 Honda Civic — which retails for around $20,000 per Kelley Blue Book — that’s not going to cost the same amount to insure as the 2019 Rolls Royce Dawn, a car that is worth $351,650.

Pricewise, that’s 17 Honda Civics, so it doesn’t make sense to charge the same amount for insurance. That’s an extreme example, but the point is that it comes down to price.

Career Path to Becoming a Firefighter

A lot of kids grow up with the dream to become a firefighter. A lot of them follow through and get that badge — the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics puts that number at over 300,000 in the United States alone — enabling them the opportunity to save lives and important memories. But, what’s that path look like?

Each state sets its own requirements for becoming a firefighter, so it’s best to check with your local firehouse if you’re trying to become a firefighter. Generally, the path follows a few commonalities:

  1. Volunteer to help the fire department with whatever they need
  2. Become CPR certified
  3. Be physically fit
  4. Get a degree in Fire Science, where you will learn how to extinguish fires using various methods, evacuate structures, treat victims, drive all required vehicles, maintain equipment, and participate in fire education
  5. Pass all necessary exams, paper and physical
  6. Have a clean criminal record

The first step is to talk to a firefighter and go from there.

Free Auto Insurance Comparison

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Road Traffic Accidents Involving Emergency Vehicles

Firefighters are in the no-fault category while on duty. So, are volunteer firefighters covered by insurance?

First, the good news. Like police officers, firefighters fall into the no-fault category when it comes to accidents at work. If they are involved in an accident while on a call, they are usually judged not to be at fault for the accident in most cases.

If you exhibit safe driving procedures and follow the protocol for on-the-job emergency transportation, you should not have to worry about being accused of negligence on the job.

There may be exceptions if there is a cause to think that the driver was negligent but this is the general rule to protect emergency workers. Michigan, for instance, does not hold firefighters at fault for accidents that involved something in the line of duty.

The state’s move over law, similar to that in other states, also protects first responders by requiring drivers to move over when passing them on the side of the road. Take a look at this video for more.

The same holds true for other first responders, such as police officers. Some companies offer both law enforcement auto insurance discounts and lower rates for other first responders.

The Allstate law enforcement discount and EMT car insurance discount are there to help first responders save extra money. The Progressive law enforcement discount, however, may not apply to firefighters.

Of course, you should always check with your state to see where your state of residence stands.

What is negligent driving?

When it comes to negligence, firefighters are not immune in this regard if they overstepped their rights as an emergency responder or neglected to do what a reasonable person knows to do. This video explains some things that are considered negligent driving.

This is a legal requirement for proving fault in such cases so you should consult with an attorney or legal resource to get your questions answered regarding whether a certain situation could be considered negligent or not.

Free Auto Insurance Comparison

Enter your zip code below to view companies that have cheap auto insurance rates.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Auto Insurance for EMT Vehicles

In most cases, your emergency vehicle will be covered under the fire department’s insurance plan. The fire department’s insurance plan is usually purchased by the city and paid for through the fire department in the town in which it resides.

Fire department insurance that the department gets usually applies to all vehicles that are under the jurisdiction of the city fire department. So you usually do not have to worry about covering these vehicles.

But what if you drive your car to the scene?

For example, there are volunteer firefighters or other personnel who are not assigned a department vehicle. Under this situation, then you would need to get auto insurance coverage for any vehicles that you drive, whether you use them for emergency calls or not.

Other Benefits for Firefighters

Being a firefighter, whether full-tie or volunteer, comes with a lot of benefits. Many companies offer a first responders discount as a way of saying thank you. Although you can save in a lot of ways, you may have more insurance questions and concerns.

What health insurance do firefighters get? That depends on where you work and whether or not you are full-time. Most volunteer firefighters have a regular full-time job through which they get their health insurance benefits.

Do volunteer firefighters get life insurance? Group life insurance is often offered as a workplace benefit. It may or may not be available to volunteers depending on the department,

Talk to Your Insurance Company For Discounts

How can I get a discount on Geico Insurance or anybody else who doesn’t offer much of a discount for being a firefighter?

There are plenty of discounts out there, down to just good driver discounts and LoJack discounts. LoJack helps by making it easier to recover your car if it gets stolen. How much does LoJack save on insurance? LoJack can help you save about 10 percent off of the comprehensive portion of your policy.

The biggest factor to impact your rates is your driving record, so keeping it free of DUIs and speeding tickets is how you’ll save the most.

When you sign up for or shop for auto insurance, it is important to talk to your insurance carrier and tell them what you do for a living. A firefighter is considered a high-risk occupation. However, being a firefighter would affect your life or health insurance much more than your auto insurance.

Auto insurance risk is based on the likelihood of injury or property damage, primarily. Other risks are also taken into account such as the chance of injury to others in the car with you and the amount of time on the road.

The reason that life and health insurance companies view a firefighter’s job as high risk is that you are likely to face a life-or-death situation on a daily basis. So your life or health insurance could be costly.

Regarding your auto insurance, though, the premiums you pay would likely be related more to the amount of time that you use your personal vehicle on the job.

If you only use your own vehicle on rare occasions, your rates may not be too different from anyone else’s.

We hope these tips and ideas will help firefighters to keep their insurance premiums low as they drive the highways of life.

Our hats are off to all firefighters and emergency responders. They have a challenging and honorable job keeping the rest of us safe from fires and disasters.

While there is no one type of insurance specifically for firefighters, some insurance companies do offer discounts for firefighters and other EMTs in return for excellent service to their communities through their career.

Check with various companies as you shop and compare costs and discuss this with an agent. They may be able to point you to some good discounts that are available for firefighters. Remember that many insurance companies reward firefighters for a job well done. So look for those companies when you shop for insurance.

Looking for volunteer firefighter car insurance?

Start comparison shopping for better auto insurance rates with a firefighter discount by entering your ZIP code below.