Facts About Minnesota Auto Insurance

Proof of financial responsibility is an important part of driving a motor vehicle. By law, vehicles licensed in the state of Minnesota must have liability, personal injury protection, underinsured motorist, and uninsured motorist coverage.

Ways to Establish Financial Responsibility

When you register your vehicle in Minnesota, you are certifying that you’ve established financial responsibility with the proper amount of state-required insurance.

Comparison shopping is the key to getting the insurance you need when you’re on a tight budget. You might wish to investigate group discounts, such as cheaper coverage for insuring both your car and your home with the same company.

A higher deductible can give you lower rates, but you should always keep in mind that your deductible shouldn’t be higher than what you are able to comfortably pay in the event you need to make a claim on the policy.

Minnesota Automobile Insurance Plan

If you are having trouble obtaining insurance because of problems with your driving record, ask your agent about the Minnesota Automobile Insurance Plan. The Plan guarantees insurance to any person who can’t purchase a policy through ordinary channels. It is an alternative to doing business with high-risk insurers.

Minnesota Liability Insurance Requirements for Private Passenger Vehicles

Many states only require drivers to purchase liability insurance, but Minnesota also requires personal injury protection, underinsured motorist coverage, and uninsured motorist coverage.

Liability Insurance

Liability insurance covers claims that are the result of an accident that is determined to be your fault. Minimum coverage requirements are:

  • $30,000 for injuries to one person
  • $60,000 for injuries to two or more people
  • $10,000 for property damage

Personal Injury Protection

Personal Injury Protection (PIP) pays for medical expenses, lost wages, and replacement services for an accident regardless of who is at fault. This type of insurance is also sometimes called no-fault coverage or referred to as basic economic loss benefits. Drivers to have the following:

  • $40,000 per person per accident
  • $20,000 for medical expenses
  • $20,000 for non-medical expenses such as lost wages

Underinsured Motorist Coverage

Underinsured motorist coverage helps to pay for medical claims in addition to your PIP benefits, but only if the other driver is responsible for the accident and does not have the proper amount of insurance for all necessary expenses. Coverage requirements for this policy are:

  • $25,000 for injuries to one person
  • $50,000 for injuries to two or more people

Uninsured Motorist Coverage

Uninsured motorist coverage pays for medical expenses after your PIP benefits have ended if the other driver is responsible for the accident and has no insurance coverage. Minnesota requires uninsured motorist policies to provide the following:

  • $25,000 for injuries to one person
  • $50,000 for injuries to two or more people

Keep in mind that the amounts listed above are the bare minimum state insurance requirements. Many drivers opt for more extensive insurance coverage. In addition, vehicles purchased with an auto loan are generally required to have comprehensive and collision coverage as well.

Proof of Insurance and Financial Responsibility

The law requires you to carry your proof of insurance card in your vehicle at all times. If you are ever involved in an accident or stopped for a moving violation, the law enforcement officer will ask to see this documentation. If you can’t produce it, you can face the state’s penalties for failure to maintain financial responsibility.

Penalties for Failure to Maintain Financial Responsibility

The penalties for failure to maintain financial responsibility vary based on whether or not it is your first offense for this violation. Keep these points in mind:

  • It’s a misdemeanor for first time offenders, but a gross misdemeanor if you’ve been charged with the same offense in the last 10 years.
  • Fines can range between $250 and $1,000, with up to 90 days in jail.
  • License suspension or revocation may also be part of the penalty for driving with no proof of insurance, although you may be able to avoid this if you can obtain a valid insurance policy before your court date.

If you have questions regarding a suspended license or registration, fines, or any other penalty for failing to maintain insurance, contact the Department of Public Safety at (651) 296-6911.

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