Looking for car insurance quotes for the state of Texas? You’re in luck. You can now buy complete coverage online, along with virtually any other combination you can think of. Yet before you do, there are several important things you need to know about coverage in the Lone Star State.
Keep reading below to learn more about your mandatory insurance requirements, Texas state auto insurance laws, average rate information, traffic statistics and more. Finally, you can read why getting an online quote is such a good idea. Alternatively, if you already know that you want a quote, you can use the form above to get yours now.
Minimum Auto Liability Insurance Limits In Texas
Since January 1, 2011, the legal minimum amount of coverage you are required to carry in Texas has increased. In the past the minimum was 25/50/25 coverage.
It has now increased to 30/60/25. In plain English this means you must have $30,000 for bodily injury liability for one person, $60,000 for bodily injury liability per accident and $25,000 for property damage liability per accident. However, please keep in mind that the minimum amount of coverage is often not enough.
In some cases you may need substantially more coverage to meet your liability responsibility in an accident. This is why it is recommended that you take advantage of free quotes to ensure you can get more coverage for a lower price. Texas has among the least strenuous requirements for coverage in the US.
Beyond, the minimum mandatory coverage amount mentioned above, you do not need to buy anything else. However as a Texas driver there are many additional auto insurance coverage options available to you. Some you may wish to consider include: Collision coverage, Comprehensive coverage, Medical Payment coverage, Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage, Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist (UM/UIM) Coverage and more.
Be sure to ask you insurance agent and/or company about how each of these different types of coverage can help better protect you.
Texas Car Insurance Laws
Car insurance in Texas is regulated by the Texas Department of Insurance. They can help you with all your auto insurance questions. Moreover, they can explain the laws in Texas beyond the minimum coverage amount discussed above. Please be aware that ignorance of the law is no excuse.
First, you need to know that Texas operates under Tort insurance law and is not among the no-fault states. This means that in every accident someone is found to be at fault or proportionate responsibility is assigned. Generally speaking, the more at fault you are the greater your financial responsibility for paying costs. Moreover in Texas, if you are found to be more than 51% responsible for an accident, you may not be able to collect anything from the other party.
The liability portion of your insurance policy will cover costs up to the policy limit. It is for this reason why you should at least consider a higher liability insurance policy. You can also be confident that your insurance rates will go though the roof, if you get in multiple accidents where you’re found to be at fault.
Another very important thing to know about Texas insurance laws, is that you must carry proof of insurance or proof of financial responsibility when using your motor vehicle. Usually, your insurance company will give you an insurance card. You are required by law to present the card in the following situations:
- When you are asked to by a police or other law enforcement officer;
- When you are involved in an accident;
- When you are registering or renewing your car’s registration;
- When you receive or renew your driver’s license;
- When you have your car inspected.
Failure to know and follow your legal obligations under the Texas Financial Responsibility Laws can be be severe. They can include (but may not be limited to) the following:
- 1st Offense: A fine between $175 and $350.
- Subsequent Offenses: A fine between $350 and $1,000, suspension of your driver’s license and impoundment of your car.
- Offenses Without a Driver’s License: Up to a $2,000 fine and/or 180 days in jail.
- If You Ar At Fault In An Accident Causing Serious Injuries and/or Death: Up to a $4,000 fine and/or 1 year in jail.
Now remember you only face these penalties if you do not meet your financial responsibility obligations. If you have at least the minimum amount of required insurance you will not be subject to them.
To this end, TexasSure, Texas’ financial responsibility verification program was created. It is used to help law enforcement officer more quickly identify those who have and have not insured their vehicles. Again as long as you have and maintain proper insurance you have nothing to worry about.
Finally, You should also be aware that Texas has an Auto Insurance Consumer Bill of Rights. Your insurance company is mandated by law to give you a copy of your bill of rights when you buy a new policy. Thus, both you and your car insurance company are legally bound to follow the auto insurance laws of Texas.
Texas Car Insurance Companies
There are a large number of auto insurance companies that sell private passenger auto insurance in Texas. However, the top 40 insurers sell over 90% of all policies in the state. Here are the companies with websites in order of market share.
Please note some insurance groups offer insurance under several separate companies. Only one website per group is listed here, which is why there are less than 40 companies listed. For the complete list see the link above.
Old American County Mutual
Kemper Corporation (formerly Unitrin)
The companies listed above may be big, but that doesn’t mean they are right for you. Make sure you do your own research before buying any policy. One tool that can help you is the complaint index from the Texas Department of Insurance. It tracks companies based on the number of complaints they have against them. The more complaints, the worse the company.
If you have a complaint with your insurance company, you may be interested to learn you can file it here.
Average Auto Insurance Rates In Texas
In 2011 CarInsurance.com claimed the average auto insurance premiums paid by drivers in Texas are $1,270 per year. This is about 12% lower than the US national average of $1,440 per year, and is a decrease of 16% compared to rates paid by Texas drivers in 2010 ($1,518).
Better yet, the trend seems to be going in the right direction. In 2008 the Insurance Information Institute claimed the state was the 15th most expensive in the country. So although it might not feel like it, Texas drivers do get a pretty good deal when it comes to auto insurance.
Yet the average price all car owners in Texas pay for insurance, tells you almost nothing about what you’re likely to pay. You can of course get free Texas insurance quotes to find out exactly how much you’ll pay. Alternatively, the Texas Department of Insurance has created HelpInsure.com, which provides sample rate information for car owners based on a variety of factors. It can be a good way to single out companies that are likely to give you a good rate on your premiums.
Car Accident Statistics For Texas
Due to the vast geographical size of Texas, and the fact it is among the most populous in the United States, it is no surprise that it has among the highest number of traffic accidents and fatalities in the US. Currently, it is second only to California in the number of traffic fatalities recorded. Moreover, it has a slightly higher rate of DUIs being the cause of crashes than the US as a whole (38% for Texas vs 32% National Average).
In terms of actual numbers, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported that 3,071 people were killed on Texas roads in 2009. This meant the state has a fatality rate of 1.33 per 100 million vehicle miles traveled (US average 1.14). Fatalities caused by drivers with a blood alcohol level over 0.08 stood at 1,235.
There are 4 counties in particular which routinely have more than 100 fatalities each per year according to the NHTSA. They are: Harris County, Dallas County, Bexar County and Tarrant County. Collectively these 4 counties have 25% of all of Texas’ traffic fatalities.
To make sure you arrive safely, have a look at Texas Highway Patrol Travel Tips, look in their education and awareness campaigns and stay up to date on all transportation news from the Texas Department of Transportation.
Reasons To Get A Texas Car Insurance Quote
Texas car insurance quotes have price ranges that are determined through a little basic information. Things like the driving background, the driver’s age, automobile model, where the vehicle is to be used and other such related information may be used.
Like any other state in the country, Texas has a law that states all car owners have to duly supply each of their vehicles with the right car insurance in case something comes up on the road. But whether you look at it as an obligation or not, you have to keep in mind how important it is to get a car insurance. Because no matter how safe a driver you are, accidents can still happen (see stats above).
The usual complaints that car owners have when it comes to a car insurance, is how tedious the process tends to be when they’re getting it. But now, there is a better, much easier way to go for those who seek that much needed car quote without the hassles. Simply use the free quote forms provided at the top or bottom of this page.
Anybody can now get their much needed Texas auto insurance online without ever having to go though that irritating paper trail and the useless sales talk. All you have to do is go online, use our form and enter some basic information.
After filling everything out properly you will be given your instant Texas car insurance quote. It’s quite amazing how technology has truly changed the way people do business!
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