What Are the Car Insurance Requirements in California?

two people shaking hands over car keys and a document that says "contract"

Car accidents happen when we least expect them to—when you’re commuting to work, going to visit your family member, or driving back from a baseball game. In these cases, car insurance provides you and others on the road with peace of mind and security from financial losses. Below, we discuss what auto insurance requirements are required for drivers in California.

Minimum Requirements for Drivers in California

Every state makes it illegal to drive without auto insurance, including California. At minimum, California motorists are required to have 15/30/5 liability coverage, which plays out in the following coverage amounts:

  • A $15,000 minimum to cover you in the event of injury or death to one person
  • A $30,000 minimum to cover you in the event of injury or death to two or more people
  • A $5,000 minimum to cover you in the event of property damage

It’s important to note that liability insurance only covers other people who sustain damages in accidents you cause. If you are found to be responsible for an accident and only have this minimum coverage, you are on the hook for any out-of-pocket medical expenses, lost wages, and property damage that you or your passengers incurred.

Other Types of Coverage You May Want to Add

Most car insurance companies offer liability limits greater than the 15/30/5 limits. While such policies will be more expensive, it’s ultimately worth it to spend a little more on premiums than having to worry about potentially paying thousands of dollars out of pocket. Other types of coverage that you may also add onto your California auto insurance policy include:

  • Medical payment coverage
  • Uninsured motorist coverage (UMC)/underinsured motorist coverage (UIM)
  • Collision
  • Comprehensive coverage
  • Towing and road service
  • Personal injury protection (PIP) coverage
  • Rental reimbursement coverage/transportation expense coverage

We’re Here to Protect Your Rights

Being injured in a serious auto accident is traumatic enough. You shouldn’t have to deal with the sneaky tactics of insurance companies when you are just trying to recover compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.

If you need assistance filing a claim, Fowler | Helsel | Vogt is here to review your case for free and determine what avenues exist to help you receive maximum compensation. Please don’t hesitate to contact our Fresno car accident attorneys at (559) 900-1280 to learn more.

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