Louisiana Car Insurance
Auto Insurance Basics in Louisiana
When you get car insurance you enter into a contract with a provider. In return for your payments, which are called premiums, you are promised a set of defined financial protections or reimbursements in the event you get into a car accident. The exact protections or coverages are negotiated with your insurance provider and are clearly spelled out in your policy.
|Louisiana Required Car Insurance Coverage||LA Required Min. Limits|
|Bodily Injury (BI)||$15,000 per person / $30,000 per accident|
|Property Damage (PD)||$25,000 per accident|
Here are some of the fundamentals of auto insurance. In the event that you hit another car, a pedestrian, or a property you would be liable for any bodily injury or property damage. The most basic car insurance coverage is called Liability insurance. Liability insurance will reimburse the injured party up to the limits defined in your policy and after you pay your deductible. Simply put, a deductible is an amount you must pay before your policy starts to reimburse the injured party. Most insurance providers can give you a choice of at least a couple of deductible levels – typically either $500 or $1,000, but sometimes higher. If you want a low deductible amount, insurance companies will generally charge you a higher premium. Agreeing to a higher deductible means your premiums will be lower.
As mentioned, liability coverage covers bodily injury or property damage to others. There are policies that can cover you for your own potential losses in the event of an accident. Collision insurance will pay for repairing your crash damaged car after your deductible is met and up to the defined dollar limit in your policy. Collision insurance is recommended for new cars but, remember, cars depreciate in value over time. If you are insuring an older vehicle, make sure that the amount of your collision policy premiums and deductibles don’t exceed the book value of your car.
You can get additional protection from theft, vandalism and weather related damage from a Comprehensive policy. You can get Personal Injury Protection, or PIP, to help pay for any medical expenses you may need in the event of a crash. You can buy coverage to protect you if you are hit by an uninsured driver or a driver who does not a have sufficiently large enough policy to cover your damages. You can also probably purchase roadside protection should you breakdown and other specialty insurance products.
The cost of these products are variable. Your rates will be determined by state mandates of minimum coverages, the level of additional coverages, if any, that you choose, and your personal factors. Car insurance prices are tailored to your specific profile and providers will look at things like your place of residence, driving record, and credit history, among other things in determining your premiums.
Auto Insurance Requirements in Louisiana
Like most states, Louisiana requires motorists to prove a level of financial responsibility (in other words, to have a certain level of financial means) to have in reserve in case of an accident. The average repair costs of a fender bender where no one gets hurt is about $3,500 and the full cost of an accident resulting in a fatality is over $1 million. So, in Louisiana in order to legally operate a vehicle you must the wherewithal to cover liability expressed in the following shorthand: 15/30/25. This means that you must the ability to pay at least $15,000 for bodily injury costs of a person hurt in an accident caused by the driver of the insured vehicle; $30,000 of minimum liability coverage in case more than one person gets hurt; and $25,000 to cover any property damage.
Average Cost of Coverage in Louisiana
Car insurance in the state of Louisiana is very expensive compared to the other states. By some estimates it’s over 50% higher than the national average. The high rates are driven by large numbers of insured drivers, and tendency of drivers to rely on law suits to recover damages after accidents. The cost of your insurance will depend of the breadth and depth of coverage you opt for.
|Age||Average Premium (yearly)|
Cheapest Car Insurance Companies in Louisiana
There are a variety of insurance providers operating in Louisiana, so you will have no shortage of choices. As far as the cheapest provider for your own needs well, that’s hard to say. Safe drivers get the best rates in Louisiana as they do everywhere else. Having good credit also helps you get preferred rates for your coverage. Both Geico and Louisiana Farm Bureau are known to offer competitive rates in the state but Allstate has recently cut its process in an effort to gain market share.
|Rank||Company||Avg. Premium (annual)|
Unique Car Insurance Rules and Penalties in Louisiana
Louisiana utilizes the At Fault system for car insurance. It’s called that because in this system the driver who causes an accident is the party held responsible for bodily injury and property damages. The party who suffers damage can either file a claim with their own company (who will likely seek to recoup from the at fault driver’s carrier); they can file a claim directly with the carrier of the responsible party; or they can file a lawsuit to claim damages in civil court.
Although the vast majority of drivers purchase insurance policies to establish their financial responsibility, there are actually other ways you can go. You can purchase a bond from a licensed surety company in the amount of $55,000 or you can even deposit $30,000 directly to the state treasurer. The money would be drawn down in the event of claims against you.
|Type of Penalty||First Offense||Second Offense||Third and Subsequent Offenses|
|Louisiana DMV fees||Between $500 and $1,000||Between $500 and $1,000||Between $500 and $1,000|
|Driving Privilege Suspension||Registration and license plates, vehicle impoundment||Registration and license plates, vehicle impoundment||Registration and license plates, vehicle impoundment|
|Insurance claims||Barred from claiming for losses in collision accidents||Barred from claiming for losses in collision accidents||Barred from claiming for losses in collision accidents|
|Reinstatement Fees||$50 reinstatement + $10 reinstatement administration||$150 reinstatement + $10 reinstatement administration||$500 reinstatement + $10 reinstatement administration|
|Other||Storage and wreckage fees for the impounded vehicle||Storage and wreckage fees for the impounded vehicle||Storage and wreckage fees for the impounded vehicle|
How to Get the Cheapest Car Insurance in Louisiana
The best way to ensure that you’re getting the best price possible for your car insurance is to engage in comparative shopping. Reach out and get free price quotes for the exact same coverage levels from at least three vendors. Better yet, use our no cost online platform at General.com and you can easily get free, no obligation quotes and see for yourself who will give you the best deal. Smart shoppers compare prices to save money and you can do the same for your car insurance needs.