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Like most states, Mississippi requires drivers to carry at least minimum levels of liability insurance coverage. Despite this legal requirement, Mississippi has the highest estimated rate of uninsured motorists in the country. This could be one reason why insurance costs in Mississippi are above the national average. Over 29% of drivers are estimated to be driving uninsured in the Magnolia State, but driving without insurance is a serious offense and can have major legal and financial consequences.
Minimum insurance required in Mississippi
Mississippi car insurance laws mandate that drivers carry at least a minimum amount of liability insurance. The minimum coverage needed to drive legally is:
- $25,000 bodily injury liability per person
- $50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
- $25,000 property damage liability per accident
Car insurance companies in Mississippi are also required to offer you uninsured motorist coverage and medical payments coverage, although you have the option to decline these in writing.
Keep in mind these are only the minimum coverage types and levels required to keep a driver legally covered. There are numerous other coverage types to consider for more financial protection. You should also be aware if you lease or finance your vehicle, the financial institution will most likely require you purchase comprehensive coverage and collision coverage, which add coverage for damage to your vehicle. Even if you own your vehicle, you may want to consider adding these coverage types so you have a “full coverage” policy.
You may also want to consider gap insurance if you have a loan or lease on your vehicle. If you are involved in an accident and your vehicle is totaled or if your car is stolen, gap coverage is designed to pay the difference between the amount you still owe and the amount the insurance company says your vehicle is worth.
Penalties for driving without insurance in Mississippi
Because liability insurance is mandatory for drivers in Mississippi, getting caught driving without insurance results in serious fines and penalties. Your license may also be suspended until you pay a reinstatement fee and show proof of insurance.
Fees from Mississippi’s online insurance verification system
Mississippi uses the Mississippi Insurance Verification System (MSIVS) to validate a driver’s liability coverage. This system allows law enforcement to pull, in real time, a driver’s insurance coverage information. However, failure to show proof of insurance may still be subject to fines and penalties, considering that at least the state minimum insurance coverage limits are required by law.
Getting into an accident without insurance
Getting into an accident without insurance results in even more serious consequences than being caught driving without insurance. In addition to the fines and other penalties you could face for driving uninsured, you’ll also be responsible for the financial impact of the damages and injuries that you cause.
Even if the other party has uninsured motorist coverage on their policy, you could still be held legally responsible for the damages and medical expenses associated with the accident. If you aren’t able to pay, you may find yourself being sued.
Frequently asked questions
What if you provide false insurance information?
Driving without insurance is serious, and providing false insurance information is even worse. Giving out false insurance information is considered fraud. If you are charged with fraud and found guilty, you’ll likely face steep fines. You may have your license suspended or revoked and you could face jail time.
How much is car insurance in Mississippi?
The average cost of car insurance in Mississippi is $492 per year for minimum coverage and $1,782 per year for a full coverage policy, according to Bankrate’s 2021 study of quoted annual premiums. This average is higher than the national average of $1,674 for a full coverage policy. However, your exact rates may be more or less than the averages depending on personal factors such as your ZIP code, driving history and vehicle.
What is the cheapest car insurance in Mississippi?
While Mississippi may have higher-than-average premiums, some insurance companies do offer competitive rates. Bankrate analyzed rates obtained from Quadrant Information Services to determine which carriers offered the cheapest car insurance in Mississippi. Our research found that USAA, State Farm and Southern Farm Bureau are among the cheapest companies, on average.
How can I save on car insurance rates in Mississippi?
There are multiple ways to save on auto insurance in addition to taking advantage of discounts. One of the best methods is to compare quotes from several companies so you can find which one is offering the coverage you need for the lowest premium. Just make sure the quotes are the same in terms of coverage levels and amounts so that you are comparing them fairly. If you have full coverage, you could also consider increasing your comprehensive and collision deductibles, which generally lowers your premium. Before you do this, make sure you can afford the deductible level you choose, so that if you file a claim for damage to your vehicle, you can afford your share.