North Carolina Car Insurance Guide
Before you start driving on North Carolina’s beautiful roads , i’s worth double-checking your insurance coverage. Are you meeting state requirements? Do you have the right coverage for your specific needs? With so many different options to know, finding insurance in North Carolina can seem daunting. To make matters easier, we’ve created this guide to give you the details you need to know about insurance and make sure you’re covered from the Great Smoky Mountains all the way to the Outer Banks. So, sit back and study up on state minimum requirements, insurance terminology, motorcycle rules, and more!
Does My North Carolina Auto Insurance Cover Me When Im Out Of State
Yes, your North Carolina auto insurance policy has a broadening clause, which means it automatically expands coverage to meet the minimum requirements of whatever state youre traveling in.
It also covers you while driving in Canada, but it doesnt extend to Mexico. If youre going to drive into Mexico, you must buy a Mexican liability policy. For travel into Canada, your insurance carrier can provide a special insurance card that will protect you if you need to show proof of insurance to a Canadian police officer.
Penalties For Driving Without A License In North Carolina
Like most states, North Carolina prohibits people from operating a motor vehicle without a valid drivers license, and according to drivinglaws.org, the penalties for failing to comply are quite serious. Driving without a valid license is a class 3 misdemeanor in North Carolina, resulting in a fine as high $200 and up to 20 days in jail depending on the driver’s criminal history.
What about a driver who simply doesn’t have their license at the time they’re stopped: Well, they can present proof of a valid license in court to avoid an unwarranted conviction. But to avoid any unnecessary hassle, always make sure you have your license before driving anywhere.
What about people whose license is suspended or revoked: If you drive with a suspended license, you’ll be subject to a class 3 misdemeanor, a fine of up to $200, and up to 20 days in jail. If you commit a moving violation while your license is suspended, the Division of Motor Vehicles will suspend your license for a similar duration. A moving violation while your license is revoked could lead to longer revocations, or, in the case of a third offense, a permanent revocation.
What if you’re caught driving after having your license suspended for a DWI:
If you’re driving while your license is suspended on a DWI charge, you’re guilty of a class 1 misdemeanor, meaning a conviction can result of up to 120 days in jail, alcohol monitoring, a fine determined by the judge, and a longer period of license suspension.
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Collision/other Than Collision Coverage Can Protect Your Vehicle
If you’re leasing a car or making monthly payments, you’ll likely need collision/other than collision coverage since most lenders require them But even if you own your vehicle outright, these coverages can be very helpful if your car is ever damaged or stolen, so you can avoid paying for repairs or a new vehicle yourself.
Learn more about auto coverages available from Progressive.
Maintaining Your Nc Auto Insurance Coverage
If you let your car insurance coverage lapse or expire in North Carolina, your insurance company is required by law to notify the DMV. You will have 10 days to provide the DMV with current proof of coverage. Failure to do so could result in revocation of your license plates, as well as fines and fees.
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Liability Car Insurance Minimums In North Carolina
If you’re buying car insurance in North Carolina, the law requires you to have the following minimum amounts of liability car insurance coverage:
- $30,000 for bodily injury liability per person injured in an accident you cause
- $60,000 for total bodily injury liability when two or more people are injured in an accident you cause, and
- $25,000 for property damage per accident you cause.
This basic coverage pays for medical bills, vehicle damage, and other costs of drivers, passengers, and pedestrians who incur losses stemming from a car accident you cause, up to coverage limits. You can carry more coverage to protect you in case a serious crash results in significant car accident injuries and vehicle damage. Remember, once policy limits are exhausted, you are personally on the financial hook, so higher insurance limits can help protect your personal assets in the event of a serious crash.
Your liability coverage will kick in if any family member is driving your vehicle, or if you’ve given someone else permission to use it. It will likely also cover you if you get into an accident in a rental car.
What Are The Minimum Auto Insurance Requirements In North Carolina
Suffering an injury in a car accident can be extremely distressing. Sometimes, the at-fault driver does not have car insurance, and injured parties are left wondering how they will afford their medical costs. North Carolina law requires drivers to purchase minimum amounts of regular car insurance, uninsured motorist insurance, and underinsured motorist insurance.
Motor Vehicle Insurance Requirements in North Carolina
North Carolina law requires drivers to carry a minimum amount of driving insurance. Drivers must purchase the following minimum amounts of coverage in North Carolina:
- Bodily injury liability coverage: Minimum legal requirement $30,000 per person and $60,000 per accident
- Uninsured motorist bodily injury: Minimum legal requirement $30,000 per person and $60,000 per accident
- Uninsured/Underinsured motorist property damage: Minimum legal requirement $25,000
- Property damage liability coverage: Minimum legal requirement $25,000
North Carolina drivers are legally obligated to carry their insurance ID card with them while driving at all times. If a law enforcement officer asks to see their ID card, they are required to present it. The following specific documents are required:
- DL-123 certification from an insurance agent
- A copy of your policy declaration page
- An insurance binder copy
Underinsured or Uninsured Driver Insurance in North Carolina Alternatives to Minimum Car Insurance in North Carolina The Charlotte Car Accident Attorneys Can Help
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North Carolina Uninsured Motorist Coverage
North Carolinians may also carry either uninsured motorist coverage or uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage . The exact requirements vary based on the liability limits you select:
UM pays for medical expenses resulting from an accident caused by an uninsured driver, as well as damage to your vehicle. This coverage is available if your bodily injury liability limits are $30,000 per person/$60,000 total per accident. UM coverage must be written on all vehicles at the same limit. However, you can purchase higher UM limits than your bodily injury liability limits. The minimum limits you need with UM coverage are:
- UM bodily injury: $30,000 per person, $60,000 per accident
- UM property damage: $25,000
Alternative Proof Of Financial Responsibility In North Carolina
North Carolina’s Vehicle Financial Responsibility Act of 1957 requires all drivers to carry some form of liability insurance as proof of financial responsibility. An insurance policy is the easiest way to satisfy the requirements, but you have alternative options:
Surety bond: Once you buy a surety bond worth at least $85,000 from a licensed North Carolina surety company, you’ll get a certificate of compliance from the state insurance commissioner. The bond guarantees you’ll pay for any expenses following an accident if there’s a judgement against you, much like an insurance company would under a minimum-liability policy. If you can’t fulfill this promise, the surety company will pay in your place and collect from you later.
Real estate bond: This type of bond guarantees you’ll pay up to $85,000 following any car accident you cause. It’s backed by a piece of property and must be approved by a county superior court clerk. The bond must be signed by two other individuals who own real estate in North Carolina with combined equity worth at least $170,000. If you fail to make the necessary payments, the Commissioner will take the property to make good on your liability.
Cash/security deposit: You may choose to make an $85,000 deposit using cash or another type of security such as a government bond or note. If you’re involved in an accident, the commissioner will take your deposit and satisfy any judgement that results.
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Average Monthly Car Insurance Rates In Nc
|Core Car Insurance Coverage Costs in North Carolina||Cost|
Uninsured Motorist coverage is required in North Carolina. It is bundled with liability insurance, which is also required, by state law.
Underinsured Motorist coverage and Medical Pay are not required, but experts do recommend these optional coverages, as they can provide needed protection in the event something happens!
Filing A Car Accident Claim As A Passenger
Unfortunately, many people who are injured as passengers in motor vehicle accidents forgo filing a personal injury claim, particularly when the driver of the vehicle they were in was partly at fault for the crash. However, filing a claim does not have to affect the relationship between the driver and the passenger.
If the insurance company determines that the driver of the vehicle was at fault for the accident, regardless of whether or not a claim is brought against the insurance company, it will likely raise the drivers premiums. When an injured passenger files a claim for damages, this does not necessarily impact the driver anymore than he or she would have already been impacted following the accident. In fact, choosing to not file a claim for damages benefits no one but the insurance company.
If you believe you may be entitled to financial compensation after a motor vehicle accident in which you were a passenger, we encourage you to explore your legal options. You should not have to face massive medical bills, ongoing lost wages, and immense pain and suffering on your own. The insurance companys job is to pay out rightful claims and, at Charles G. Monnett III & Associates, we know how to negotiate with them in an effort to recover the fair compensation you are owed.
Get in touch with us today to request a no-cost, no-obligation consultation: .
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Unfortunately The Number Of Serious Car Wrecks In North Carolina Continues To Increase
In 2016, for instance, 130,137 people were injured on North Carolina roadways, a 5.3% increase from 2015. Sadly, 1,441 people lost their lives, a 4.4% increase from 2015.
When representing an injured party, or the family that has lost a loved one, it is important to ensure that all sources of potential recovery are fully explored. This analysis starts with the potential insurance coverage. The process can be a complex and, unfortunately, significant sources of recovery can be missed. The best course of action, therefore, typically is to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney to assist with the investigation and analysis of all potential insurance coverage.
North Carolinas Rules On Electronic Proof Of Insurance
If you are stopped by the police and asked to show proof of insurance, you may wonder if you need to find a paper copy of your insurance card, or if you can use an electronic version. In North Carolina, you are allowed to show an electronic copy of your insurance card on your mobile device.
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What Is The Minimum Car Insurance Requirement In North Carolina
How much car insurance do you need in North Carolina? According to state laws, you need at least the states minimum amount of liability and uninsured motorist coverage to operate a motor vehicle in North Carolina.
- $30,000 per person for bodily injury
- $60,000 per accident for bodily injury
- $25,000 per accident for property damage
- $30,000 per person for bodily injury for uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage
- $60,000 per accident for bodily injury for uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage
- $25,000 per accident for property damage for uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage
The 30/60/25 state minimum will provide basic protection. If you want more coverage, you can get higher liability limits or add-ons for an additional cost.
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Auto Insurance Coverage Options In North Carolina
Getting car insurance in North Carolina is a fairly simple process. After choosing an insurance company, drivers can get a quote and apply for a policy. Before signing the policy, drivers will decide the liability coverage limits and whether they want full coverage insurance.
A full coverage insurance policy covers damage to your vehicle with the addition of comprehensive and collision coverage. Comprehensive and collision usually carry a deductible.
- Comprehensive coverage : Comprehensive coverage pays for damage to your vehicle caused by things typically outside your control. Some examples of comprehensive claims include hitting an animal, fire, theft, vandalism and acts of nature, such as hail and flooding.
- Collision coverage : Collision coverage pays for the damage to your vehicle if you are at fault in an accident. This coverage is also sometimes used to pay for repairs to your vehicle if someone hits you and flees the scene of the accident.
There are also several add-on coverage options that could benefit drivers in North Carolina:
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Who Has The Cheapest Car Insurance In North Carolina
Getting the cheapest car insurance in North Carolina may sound great, but that cheap rate can come at a cost when you need it most. You want auto insurance thats affordable, but even more importantly reliable, in case you have an accident.
A Liberty Mutual auto insurance policy can cost less than you think.3
Coverage Designed With You In Mind
One of the original 13 colonies, North Carolina is one of the 10 most populated states. Located on the Atlantic coast of the United States, its largest cities are Charlotte and the capital, Raleigh. Home to professional sports teams in basketball, football, hockey and soccer, the Tar Heel State is home to the first flight by the Wright Brothers and the Outer Banks chain of islands. The state is known for being a home to motorsports, financial institutions, furniture centers, textiles and tobacco farming. With the Appalachian Mountains in the Western part of the state, North Carolina is home to diverse landscapes which can be seen from Interstates 26, 40, 85, 95 and 77.
Finding the right car insurance for you means staying up to date on North Carolina requirements. The table below lists the coverages and minimum coverage limits that are required in North Carolina. Keep in mind, however, that minimum coverage limits are just a starting point. You may want to consider increasing your coverage limits for greater protection.
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Can You Get Car Insurance Without A License In North Carolina
Yes. It is possible to get auto insurance without a drivers license in North Carolina. However, not all companies offer insurance to people with no license. The process may also be a bit more complicated. Note that it is illegal to drive in North Carolina without a license, whether youre insured or not.
What Is A Fault
As mentioned above, North Carolina follows a fault-based system when it comes to car accident claims. Under this type of system, injured automobile accident victims typically file claims with the at-fault drivers insurance company, not their own. Minimum liability insurance is meant to cover other people who are injured due to the policyholders negligent or wrongful conduct, not the policyholder.
While you can elect to add additional coverage that protects you and your passengers in the event of a crashsuch as personal injury protection /medical payments coverage or collision coverageif you only have minimum liability insurance, you will need to file a claim with the at-fault partys insurance provider to recover compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, and other damages. This means you will have to prove someone else was at fault.
After an accident, its important that you reach out to an attorney who can help you establish liability and help you file your claim. Whether you were injured as a driver, passenger, or even a pedestrian or bicyclist, our firm can assist you in filing your personal injury claim.
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North Carolina Penalties For Driving Without Insurance
If your insurance lapses, the insurance company will notify the North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles . If you receive a liability insurance termination notification from the DMV, you must respond within 10 days or your vehicles license plate will be revoked. You will also face civil penalties, late fees, interest and collections.
The penalty for a first insurance lapse is $50. The second lapse is $100, and each subsequent lapse is $150. There is also a $50 restoration fee. In addition, you can face up to 45 days of probation for a first offense and your registration could be suspended for up to 30 days. Subsequent offenses could result in jail time.
What Is The Minimum Car Insurance Requirement In North Carolina While Leasing A Car
State laws dictate the minimum coverage requirements for North Carolina drivers. However, that does not mean it is enough coverage for all North Carolina residents. If you plan on leasing a car, your minimum requirements may be different. Usually, leasing companies require full coverage auto insurance with 100/300/50 minimum liability limits, but this may vary depending on the company. Contact your leasing company to find out how much coverage you need.
How much insurance should you have? Generally, you should look for a policy with a coverage level suitable for your needs. If you are unsure, MoneyGeek recommends at least 50/100/50 full coverage.
Aside from being a requirement in North Carolina, uninsured motorist coverage is a great way to protect yourself and your family against possible financial loss if an uninsured/underinsured motorist hits you. About 7.4% of North Carolina drivers are uninsured. While this is on the lower end compared to some other states, having full coverage will prepare you for unexpected incidents.
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