Connecticut car insurance laws
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As is true in most states, Connecticut auto insurance requirements are determined by the state government and must be adhered to in order to drive legally. Connecticut requires liability coverage to pay for both property damage and injuries if you are at fault in an accident. It also requires you to carry uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage in case the other driver does not have insurance or has too little insurance to pay the bills.
Connecticut minimum car insurance is 25/50/25, along with 25/50 for underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage. Just because these are your required minimums, however, does not mean that purchasing this amount of insurance will cover you adequately in a serious accident.
You should buy as much insurance as you can afford to give you the most comprehensive coverage possible. This will cost more, but can be worth it in the long term. The average cost of minimum coverage in Connecticut is $672, while full coverage is $1,605.
Car insurance laws in Connecticut
Here is a breakdown of what your auto insurance policy must include for you to drive legally:
- $25,000 bodily injury coverage per accident, per person
- $50,000 bodily injury coverage per accident, total (if more than one person is injured)
- $25,000 in property damage
- $25,000 per accident, per person, for uninsured or underinsured drivers
- $50,000 per accident, total, for uninsured or underinsured drivers
To further break it down, this means that if you have the minimum legal coverage and are in an accident that is your fault, your insurance will cover the medical costs or lost wages up to $25,000 if the other driver or a passenger is injured. If more than one person is injured, your insurance will cover a total of up to $50,000.
You’re also covered for up to $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident if the other person is driving illegally without insurance or without enough insurance to cover your costs.
Liability insurance in Connecticut
Liability insurance is at the heart of Connecticut insurance laws. Liability means you are responsible for something — in the case of insurance, that would be either medical and other costs associated with injuries and property damage.
But is the minimum requirement enough? Insurance professionals generally agree that you should purchase as much insurance as you can. Consider, for example, an accident that causes internal injuries to the other driver which require surgery. Medical costs in the U.S. are high, and your minimum $25,000 might be used up within a matter of days.
Or think about the consequences if you hit a high-end car such as a BMW or Tesla that is worth well more than the minimum requirement of $25,000. If you hit an SUV worth $40,000 and total it, your insurance would only pay for $25,000 — you would need to pay the additional $15,000 out of pocket.
It is a good idea to balance your tolerance of risk and ability to pay the premiums against those minimum requirements and purchase additional liability, such as 100/300/100. It may cost you more now, but could be a life-saver if you are in a serious accident.
Is Connecticut a no-fault state?
Connecticut was a no-fault state until 1994, when this requirement was eliminated by the state government. In a no-fault state, you must carry personal injury protection, or PIP, coverage.
Because Connecticut does not include this element in its insurance requirements, you do not need PIP insurance, and you retain the right to sue if you are injured in an accident.
Penalties for driving without insurance in Connecticut
There are several penalties levied by the state government if you fail to have auto insurance in Connecticut. In fact, you may be fined $50 even if you have insurance, but do not carry proof of that insurance with you at all times when you are driving.
If you do not have car insurance, you will be fined anywhere from $100 to $1,000 and may have your license suspended. If you own a vehicle with a commercial registration, that fine increases to up to $5,000 and may include jail time. There is also a license reinstatement cost of $175, and there may be other fines depending on your situation.
Additional auto insurance coverage options in Connecticut
LIability and UM/UIM coverage are not the only types of insurance available to Connecticut drivers. Most insurance companies offer additional coverage options that are worth considering, including the following:
- Collision: Liability pays for damage to the other driver’s car and property, but for your car to be covered you will need collision insurance. As the name suggests, collision covers damage to your car in the event of an accident.
- Comprehensive: Usually sold along with collision, comprehensive insurance covers any mishaps that might happen to your car other than an accident.
- Medical payments: This covers medical costs for you or your passengers in the event of an accident where the other driver’s insurance will not cover you. It also includes lost wages and funeral expenses and may even cover you if you are a pedestrian who is hit by a car. It might overlap with your health insurance, so check that policy to see what is covered before you purchase medical payments coverage.
- Gap insurance: if you are in an accident that totals your car, you may not get enough in the insurance payout to cover the total costs of an outstanding loan on the car due to the car’s depreciation. This coverage will make up that difference so you are not left paying out of pocket.
- New car replacement: Similar to gap coverage, this type of endorsement on your policy will pay for you to purchase a new car of the same type if your late-model vehicle is totaled.
- Ride sharing coverage: If you drive for Uber or another ride sharing company, you will need this coverage, since regular car insurance does not cover you when you use your car for business.
Frequently asked questions
What is the best car insurance company in Connecticut?
There is no one best car insurance company — the company that offers the best rate for your neighbor might not be the best choice for you. We recommend that you get several quotes from insurers before you decide. A good place to start your search is with our list of the Best Car Insurance Companies in Connecticut.
What is the cheapest car insurance in Connecticut?
It is a good idea to shop around and collect several quotes when looking for car insurance to see which insurer offers you the best prices for the most comprehensive coverage. Check out our Cheapest Car Insurance in Connecticut listing to see who is offering the lowest rates currently.
Is it enough to meet the minimum requirements for car insurance in Connecticut?
Connecticut’s minimums are 25/50/25 for liability, and 25/50 for uninsured and underinsured motorist liability. That amount would be enough to cover you in a minor accident, but might fall short if there are serious injuries or significant property damage in an accident. If you can afford to increase your coverage, we recommend that you do so.