Minnesota’s auto insurance laws are unique. For example, you need an experienced Minnesota insurance agent to help you through the maze of Personal Injury Protection and stacking, because very few states have similar laws.
Driving a car in Minnesota and purchasing auto insurance in Minnesota varies greatly with where you are in the state.
Although there aren’t as many gravel roads in Minnesota as there once were to cause broken and damaged windshields, beets falling off trucks in NW Minnesota are still a problem that could result in auto insurance losses. Slow moving vehicles can be a problem in any rural community, while the winding roads on the Range require attentive driving, as do the roads that circle around the 10,000 Minnesota lakes.
The twelve-mile trip from Eyota to Rochester is much less perilous than the thirteen miles from Golden Valley to St. Paul. The stretch of road that starts with the entry from the west into the Lowry Hills Tunnel and runs by the main campus of the University of Minnesota is amongst the worst in the state for accident count.
Minnesota drivers were once known for their courteous behavior, but in 2009 they made number five on at least one list of the least courteous drivers in the nation. Road rage is becoming a larger portion of the expense that accounts for part of the cost of auto insurance in Minnesota.
Another factor is impaired driving due to misuse of alcohol. In 2008 one in eight licensed Minnesota drivers had been arrested for DWI, which has an obvious impact on auto insurance rates.
Weather has its role on Minnesota auto insurance rates. Every year cars are driven out on too thin ice and find their way to the bottom. By law, the owner is responsible for the cost of their removal from the body of water. Drivers tend to forget from year to year what driving on icy roads is all about. The first day of impaired driving each winter is usually filled with auto accidents. The last few years, windstorm and hail have also created a large number of Minnesota auto insurance losses because Minnesota ranked as the third worst state in the nation for windstorms.
(according the Insurance Information Institute and the National Highway Safety Administration:)
Nationwide: 12.6% (2012)
Minnesota: 10.8% (2012)
Insurance Coverage Requirements:
Bodily Injury Liability
Property Damage Liability
Personal Injury Protection
Motorists are required to carry a minimum of $60,000 for all persons injured in an accident, with a maximum of $30,000 per person. They are also required to carry $10,000 for property damage. If you’ve had a major medical experience lately, or know someone who has spent several days in a hospital you probably realize how low these limits are compared to the reality of hospital care costs. A more common limit for Minnesota drivers is $100,000 per person, $300,000 per accident bodily injury and $100,000 per accident property damage. Many consider an umbrella with an additional $1,000,000 in limits available. Considering the chain reaction accidents that occur on icy and snow-bound Minnesota roads it would seem prudent to have higher limits of auto insurance protection.
Average Car Insurance Premium
The Insurance Institute uses an “average person” to establish an average rate for an average car. This figure is only good for comparison as so many factors go into establishing an auto rate.
National Average Cost Per Year: $841 (2013)
Minnesota Cost Per Year: $744 (2013)
Fatalities: 361 (2014)
Alcohol Impaired Driver Fatalities: 106 (2014)
Fatalities per 100 million miles driven (MN): .68 (2013) very low
Fatalities per 100 million miles driven (Nationwide): 1.09 (2013)
Those people you talk to through an 800-number might be in Ohio, New Jersey, or India. Your Minnesota independent auto insurance agent can help you by providing the choices available to you. They know the Minnesota laws and regulations and are ready to be your advisor.
Rates for car insurance will vary from city to city because the exposures are much different.
Other Enhanced Insurance articles related to car care and purchasing:
Enhanced Insurance is not written by attorneys. If you’re looking for legal advice, you need to contact a lawyer. Further, insurance practices and forms change constantly and are varied from state to state. For definitive answers in your area, contact a local agent.