Mississippi car insurance laws require drivers to carry a minimum amount of auto insurance. Understanding the laws unique to the Magnolia State is useful as you are comparison shopping and choosing the most comprehensive auto insurance coverage.
Mississippi has a large number of drivers on the road, with over 2.1 million, and it also ranks the highest in the nation for most fatalities per 100,000 residents. Understanding the Mississippi insurance laws is critical for drivers to make sure they are adequately protected and keep the roads as safe as possible.
Car insurance laws in Mississippi
Mississippi insurance laws are similar to numerous other states and straightforward. The following Mississippi auto insurance requirements are in place:
- $25,000 per person for a single accident
- $50,000 per accident for bodily injury
- $25,000 per accident for property damage
In addition to these liability requirements, you must have proof in your vehicle at all times that you carry the required coverage. You can use your cell phone or other electronic devices to pull up your policy documentation for proof.
Mississippi law also allows you to prove financial responsibility instead of carrying insurance. If required, you have to post a bond or a security deposit for these minimum liability amounts if you do not carry proof of insurance.
Liability insurance in Mississippi
Mississippi only requires liability insurance but there are several reasons this may not be enough coverage for you if you only choose the minimum.
For instance, the minimum requirement of $50,000 in bodily injury per accident sounds like a decent amount of coverage. However, if you are involved in a serious accident with multiple vehicles and multiple incidents of bodily injury, $50,000 would not be enough to cover the medical bills. You would be legally responsible for the difference between the $50,000 and whatever the medical bills equal up to.
Mississippi also ranks second in the country for highest number of uninsured motorists. By not having uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage on your policy, you are taking a risk should you be involved in an accident with someone without coverage. If you have this coverage, you and your passenger’s bodily injury expenses are covered, as well as loss of income and other expenses. Without uninsured coverage, your only recourse is to take the driver to court, which results in extra costs and time for you.
Is Mississippi a no-fault state?
There are 12 states in the country that are considered a no-fault state, but Mississippi is not one of them. It is an at-fault state, which is an important distinction when discussing insurance laws.
An at-fault state means drivers in Mississippi are required to compensate other parties when they are at-fault for an accident. The at-fault driver is responsible for any liability and property damage that occurred as a result of the accident. This also means the other driver can sue you for additional pain and suffering and any other damages not paid for by your insurance.
Penalties for driving without insurance in Mississippi
If you are caught driving without insurance, you can be charged with a misdemeanor and incur a $500 fine. Your license can be suspended up to one year too. You are expected to show proof of insurance to have your driving privileges reinstated.
If you do not have insurance and you cause an at-fault accident, the other driver can sue you to recover payments, loss income and a host of other expenses. These expenses all come out of your pocket. This is in addition to the fines and suspension from the state of Mississippi you will be charged with if caught driving without insurance.
Additional auto insurance coverage options in Mississippi
Drivers in Mississippi do not have to be caught short with insurance coverage. There are numerous options available to customize a policy to fit your driving needs and budget:
- Collision: Collision insurance pays to repair damages you incur from a covered accident, including damages from hitting a stationary object.
- Comprehensive: This is the insurance that covers damage to your car not caused by an accident. Examples of this are fire, theft, vandalism, water damage and falling objects.
- Uninsured/Underinsured motorist: This provides extra financial protection if you are involved in another accident and the at-fault driver does not carry or have adequate insurance. It pays for necessary medical payments, loss of income and other expenses from the accident you need to recoup.
- Roadside assistance: Roadside assistance is an affordable way to add an extra benefit to your policy in case your car is inoperable. Assistance provided ranges from towing and extrication, to battery replacement and fuel delivery.
- Rental car reimbursement: If your car is in the repair shop due to an accident, this inexpensive option pays for a rental car so you are inconvenienced as little as possible.
- Loan/lease payoff: If you drive a new car and it is totaled in an accident, it is likely you owe more on the loan or lease than what your car is valued at from the insurance company. This insurance pays the difference so you do not have to pay out of pocket to cover the difference.
- Mechanical breakdown: Similar to an extended warranty, some insurance carriers offer this option to cover repair and maintenance costs with your car so your out-of-pocket bills are not as high.
Frequently asked questions
What is the best car insurance company in Mississippi?
The best car insurance company in Mississippi is a matter of opinion and is based on several factors important to you. Many drivers review customer service ratings, customer reviews, rates, discounts and financial stability of the carrier.
What is the cheapest car insurance in Mississippi?
Mississippi has multiple carrier options for cheap insurance rates. Bankrate reviewed the latest figures and determined USAA and State Farm offer some of the lowest rates in Mississippi for drivers.
What if I need to switch car insurance companies?
You can switch car insurance companies at any time. The only caveat is to make sure you understand any penalties or fees associated with switching. It may be in your best financial interest to wait until it is time for your policy to renew. And it is equally important to have your new policy in place prior to cancelling your old one, to avoid any risk of driving without insurance.