Uninsured Drivers By State And Corresponding Auto Insurance Rates

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While all states require auto insurance (or at least financial responsibility) when driving your car, not all drivers choose to buy coverage. Uninsured drivers can be found in all 50 states + Washington DC. However, their distribution is not even. Some states have a far bigger problem with uninsured motorists than others.

Overall, 1 in 7 drivers (14%) is thought to be uninsured. Mississippi is the worst state with 28% of motorists being uninsured and Massachusetts is the best with only 4% of drivers lacking proper insurance. Obviously, this is a large difference.

As a result we have included data below about which states have the most and fewest uninsured drivers. We then compare the data to see if states with more uninsured drivers also have higher auto insurance rates. Just remember that you should always buy insurance as it protects you and everyone else on the road.

Uninsured Drivers By State

The following list ranks states according to the percentage of drivers who are thought to be uninsured. The data comes from the Insurance Research Council (IRC) via Automotive Fleet. The data is from 2009.

  1. Mississippi – 28%
  2. New Mexico – 26%
  3. Tennessee – 24%
  4. Oklahoma – 24%
  5. Florida – 24%
  6. Alabama – 22%
  7. Michigan – 19%
  8. Kentucky – 18%
  9. Rhode Island – 18%
  10. Indiana – 16%
  11. Washington – 16%
  12. Arkansas – 16%
  13. Ohio – 16%
  14. Georgia – 16%
  15. Washington DC – 15%
  16. Colorado – 15%
  17. California – 15%
  18. Maryland – 15%
  19. Texas – 15%
  20. Illinois – 15%
  21. Wisconsin – 15%
  22. Missouri – 14%
  23. North Carolina – 14%
  24. Nevada – 13%
  25. Minnesota – 13%
  26. Alaska – 13%
  27. Louisiana – 13%
  28. Arizona – 12%
  29. Iowa – 11%
  30. Montana – 11%
  31. Hawaii – 11%
  32. New Jersey – 11%
  33. New Hampshire – 11%
  34. West Virginia – 11%
  35. Virginia – 11%
  36. Delaware – 11%
  37. South Carolina – 11%
  38. Wyoming – 10%
  39. Oregon – 10%
  40. Kansas – 10%
  41. Connecticut – 10%
  42. North Dakota – 9%
  43. South Dakota – 9%
  44. Utah – 8%
  45. Idaho – 8%
  46. Nebraska – 8%
  47. Vermont – 7%
  48. Pennsylvania – 7%
  49. New York – 5%
  50. Maine – 4%
  51. Massachusetts – 4%

Are States With More Uninsured Drivers More Expensive?

As the figures above show, drivers in Mississippi, New Mexico, Tennessee, Oklahoma and Florida have to be particularly careful to avoid uninsured drivers who may be on the road. The next question is are these states more expensive than the average to buy insurance in?

If it is true that these states are more expensive than the average, it could explain why people avoid buying insurance. If it costs too much people simply can’t afford it, but may still need to drive for work or school. On the other hand, costs may be high because of how many uninsured drivers there are.

However, a premium rate survey of the 5 states with the most uninsured motorists and the 5 states with the fewer uninsured drivers yields some interesting results. The figures below are based on our average car insurance rates page. The average premiums paid by all drivers (excluding Massachusetts) in our original survey was $1,121.50 per year.

Average car insurance rates for drivers in the 5 states with the most uninsured drivers:
$1,044.40 per year

Average car insurance rates for drivers in the 5 states with the fewest uninsured drivers (excluding Massachusetts):
$1,081.20 per year

The results are very interesting as they show that both groups of states actually pay less than the national average. So while it would be true to say that the states with the fewest uninsured motorists have lower than average car insurance rates, states with the most have even lower rates.

Conclusion

The only conclusion we can really draw from this is that car insurance rates and the number of drivers who opt to buy insurance are not statically correlated. High rates don’t seem to drive people away from getting insurance. Moreover, states with fewer uninsured drivers don’t pay a premium for the issue.

Thus, car insurance premiums are not driven by this but by other factors. Similarly, people’s choice of whether or not buy insurance in the first place, most likely has to do more with the regulatory regime of the state and the penalties imposed for not having insurance, rather than the cost of coverage.

In any case, you are strongly advised to always buy enough coverage for you and your car. If you don’t know what that is, speak to a licensed insurance agent. To get an idea of what you could be paying have a look at our free car insurance quotes below:

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