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Car insurance is not something you should drive without in Alabama.
If you own your car outright and assume you are legally able to cancel your insurance, you are mistaken.
It’s one of the biggest misconceptions about driving throughout the state, and it’s helpful for drivers to know what penalties and fines you face if you are caught driving without insurance whether you knew it was legal or not.
State lawmakers work to keep people safe on the roads in Alabama, and that’s why they require you carry at least a certain amount of insurance on any vehicle.
Compare car insurance quotes to find the best rate for the coverage you need. Enter your zip code into our free rate tool above to get started.
What are the minimum car insurance requirements in Alabama?
Every driver in Alabama is required to carry at least the minimum car insurance requirement. This includes bodily injury coverage per person and per accident as well as property damage minimums.
The bodily injury minimums are $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident. Drivers are required to carry $25,000 in property damage insurance. It’s important drivers remember this is the bare minimum.
Bodily injury insurance is imperative because it pays the cost of medical bills for anyone injured in an accident. Even minor injuries result in major medical bills for many people, and this helps cover the cost of those.
Property damage covers the cost of damages to the car of someone else involved in the accident if you are the at-fault driver.
This kind of coverage might not be sufficient for any driver who leases their vehicle or makes monthly payments to a lender such as a bank or a car dealership.
These lenders might require you carry more comprehensive coverage since the vehicle belongs to them until you make the final payment on your car. Your lender will let you know what kind of coverage you’re required to carry as soon as you purchase your vehicle.
If you fail to purchase proper insurance coverage for your vehicle, your lender will send you a notice requiring you find the proper coverage immediately. If you fail to do this, you will find they place coverage on your car.
You pay for it, and you don’t get a say in where the coverage comes from. You want to start searching for comparable rates with different companies before it gets to this.
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The Additional Car Insurance Coverage You Want
You might not be required to purchase more insurance, but you should consider the additional insurance options you’re missing out on when you only buy the bare minimum.
Your basic insurance policy does not cover the following:
- uninsured motorist
- your medical costs
These coverages are imperative if you are involved in an accident.
Collision insurance helps you pay for the cost of repairing your car if it’s damaged in an accident, in a storm, or in any other capacity.
Comprehensive coverage protects you from situations outside the realm of your control, such as the following:
- fire damage
Medical and funeral coverage helps you cover the cost of medical bills and/or funeral expenses following an accident.
Uninsured motorist insurance is designed to protect you from all the other drivers without adequate insurance policies. If you are involved in an accident with someone who doesn’t carry insurance, you need a way to pay for your vehicle repairs and your medical expenses.
This option is going to protect you when someone else is driving illegally.
Penalties for Driving Without Insurance in Alabama
If you don’t have insurance, you’re not making a personal decision. You’re breaking the law in Alabama, and you face serious consequences for driving without insurance.
If you are caught in an accident or routine traffic stop without insurance coverage for your vehicle, you are required to pay a $500 fine.
If you are caught a second time, that fine increases to $1,000. It’s $1,000 each time you’re caught driving without insurance.
You also face license suspension for up to one year. Your registration is also suspended, and you are required to pay fees and prove you have insurance if you’d like either one reinstated at any point during the suspension process.
The cost is $200 for the first reinstatement fee, and it goes up to $400 if you’re involved in the same situation a second time.
Finding Discount for Car Insurance Policies
If you are a driver who doesn’t have insurance in Alabama, it’s time to get insurance. If you’re worried it’s not affordable, you can go through the long list of discounts available for many drivers. These discounts include the following:
- Good Driver Discounts
- Bundled Insurance Policy Discounts
- Multi-Car Discounts
- Good Student Discounts
- Highway Safety Rating Discounts
If you want the most affordable car insurance policy, you must have good credit. Your credit is imperative. Most car insurance companies look at your credit score to determine your risk factor as a driver.
Many agencies feel people with good credit are less risky drivers, and they offer lower rates to those who have better scores. Free reports are issued to all consumers by each of the major credit bureaus annually.
You may also find your insurance policy is less expensive if you are married, if you drive a car that’s considered safe, and if you have a good driving record.
You should always compare rates with different insurance companies prior to making a final decision on your policy.
Some companies offer much better rates for certain people, and you never know if you fall into that category until you ask around.
Another way to ensure you’re given more affordable insurance is to raise your deductible. When you choose a high deductible, you choose a much lower monthly premium. Just be sure you can afford to make the deductible payment if you’re involved in an accident.
It’s not helpful if you’re unable to make the payment and use your insurance should anything happen to you while driving.
Driving Without Insurance Is a Costly Decision
In addition to the fees and fines you face if you’re caught driving without insurance, there are additional costs associated with forgoing insurance. If you are involved in an accident and you’re the at-fault driver, you face many financial challenges.
The other driver could sue you for damages that include the cost of their medical bills and even their property damage. Driving without insurance could cost you tens of thousands of dollars or more depending on the situation.
Alabama law requires you are purchase insurance. It’s wise to shop around for insurance, check rates at different companies, and see what you can negotiate to help you afford proper coverage.
You might not feel making a monthly payment is affordable, but it’s much more affordable than the alternative.
Compare car insurance quotes right here to find the most affordable option for the coverage you desire. Enter your zip code below to begin.