Car Insurance in Louisiana

Posted & filed under States.

Louisiana QuarterLouisiana Auto Insurance Requirements
Reviewed by Dr. Christine Berry

In 2011, revised minimum insurance requirements went into effect in Louisiana for both private and commercial vehicle owners. Minimum auto insurance coverage requirements in Louisiana are mandated by state law and the Louisiana Department of Insurance. The following minimum coverage is required on every registered vehicle.

Table: Minimum auto insurance required coverages in Louisiana

(Source: Louisiana Department of Insurance)

Motorists who drive without the mandatory liability insurance in Louisiana will result either have their vehicles immediately impounded or have their license plates removed and a yellow sticker affixed to the back windshield of their vehicle. The motorist then has three days to provide proof of insurance to the Office of Motor Vehicles. After three days, if the motorist is stopped again, the officer can impound his or her vehicle until proof of insurance is given and all towing and reinstatement fees are paid. Fines range from $75 to $100 on the first conviction, $100 to $250 on the second conviction and up to $700 on each conviction after that.

Additionally, a law in Louisiana known as “No Pay, No Play” prohibits uninsured motorists from collecting the first $25,000 in property damages and the first $15,000 in personal injuries regardless of who causes the accident.

The Louisiana Automobile Insurance Plan is available to drivers who are unable to obtain required coverage through the voluntary market. More information is available on the AIPSO website.

Factors Influencing Car Insurance Premiums in Louisiana

Getting a quote for cheap car insurance in Louisiana requires some real legwork, research and rate comparisons between different insurance companies, since Louisiana ranks as one of the most expensive states for car insurance costs. Some factors that impact insurance rates in Louisiana include:

– Weather-related vehicle damage claim rate is high, compared to the rest of the U.S.
– Overall accident fatality rates are much higher than national averages
– A much higher percentage of uninsured drivers compared to national averages
– Vehicle theft rates are above national averages

A report conducted by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners and published by the Insurance Information Institute found that Louisiana drivers spend an average of $1,099 on auto insurance every year, making Louisiana one of the most expensive places in the country for auto insurance. Only New Jersey and the District of Columbia are more expensive.

Tips for Obtaining Cheap Car Insurance in Louisiana

– If you’re over 55, take a state-approved defensive driving course for a policy discount
– Some insurance companies offer “pay as you drive” car insurance for low mileage drivers in Louisiana
– You may not need what some insurance producers and consumers say is “full coverage” so ask what this means and determine whether this results in duplicate or unneeded coverage for you
– Ask about discounts for farmers or senior citizens or other affinity groups
– Maintain a good driving record
– Bind multiple policies (homeowners, life, auto) with the same provider
– Maintain a good credit score
– Create a personal “emergency fund” of up to $1500 and increase deductibles accordingly
– Discuss affinity discounts with your insurance provider
– Drop comprehensive and collision insurance on older vehicles

Louisiana Statistics

Auto Theft: Louisiana has a very high vehicle theft rate, but it has been decreasing (as is the case in most states) consistently over the past 10 years. This can be attributed primarily to anti-theft devices being standard on recent model cars, as well as public awareness of the issue:

Table showing number of stolen cars in Louisiana, 1990 to 2010Graph showing total number of stolen cars in Louisiana, 1990 to 2010Chart showing per capita motor vehicle theft in Louisiana, 1990 to 2010, with a sharp decline in recent years

(Sources: Louisiana Statistical Analysis Center; U.S. Census Bureau)

Automobile Accidents: The total vehicle miles traveled in Louisiana has remained fairly constant in recent years, but vehicle accident fatality rates have declined somewhat. Louisiana is well above the national average in numbers of deaths in car crashes.

Table showing number of deaths from car crashes in Louisiana, 2006 to 2010(Source: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration)

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