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Iowa Car Insurance Requirements

Iowa Minimum Car Insurance Requirements

The state of Iowa requires all its drivers to carry a minimum amount of liability insurance in order to legally drive. Failure to comply with these mandates will result in you being hit with some harsh penalties. Outlined below is the mandatory minimum liability insurance coverage you must carry as a driver in Iowa.

  • $20,000 bodily injury per person
  • $40,000 bodily injury per accident
  • $15,000 property damage per accident

Keep in mind that if you are leasing or financing your car, your lender or leasing company may require you to purchase additional car insurance coverage.

Modified Comparative Negligence State

Iowa uses modified comparative negligence when determining who was at fault for an accident. This means that fault can be assigned to both drivers but at different levels. For example, after an accident, the other driver would be found to be 70% at fault for it while you are only found to be 30$ responsible. In order to recover damages, the other party has to be found to be at least 51% at fault for the accident.

Some damages you can be compensated for include:

  • Vehicle repair
  • Rental cars
  • Medical expenses
  • Pain and suffering
  • Lost wages
  • Wrongful death

Diminished Value in Iowa

Iowa is what is known as a diminished value state. This means that drivers can recover diminished value from the at-fault driver’s insurance should they experience can loss when going to sell their vehicle. Even if your car has been fully restored, it still experiences a decrease in value just from being in an accident. If you encounter this in the selling process, you could be able to make a diminished value claim with the at-fault party’s insurance company to recoup your losses.

In the state of Iowa, you must meet these requirements in order to file such a claim:

  • You were not at fault for the accident
  • You can provide a record of the accident, including photos and proof of your car’s value
  • It has not been more than 2 years since the accident
  • Iowa does have uninsured motorist coverage for such a claim

Iowa Liability Coverage

The state of Iowa only requires drivers to carry liability insurance. Liability insurance covers damages you inflict on another driver in an accident that you are found to be responsible for. It will pay for both bodily injuries and property damage. Liability coverage will never protect you or your property. To get protection for yourself, you would need to expand your insurance policy.

Car Insurance Limits in Iowa

Coverage limits refer to the lower amount of insurance you are allowed to have. Usually imposed by the state, when it comes to Iowa, the limits are 20/40/15. From an insurance company’s perspective, if you carry this policy, that is then the maximum amount of money they will pay out in a claim. Known sometimes as a split limit, the three numbers represent three different aspects of liability insurance. Those categories and what they cover are explored below.

  • Bodily injury per person refers to the maximum amount your insurer will pay out for injuries to one person in an accident you caused.
  • Bodily injury per accident is the amount your insurance company will pay for all injuries you are responsible for in an accident.
  • Property damage per accident is the amount of money your insurer will pay to cover damages in an accident you caused.

Is Iowa’s Mandatory Insurance Minimums Enough Coverage?

The state-mandated minimum liability insurance coverage in Iowa is on the lower end when compared to other states. For this reason, it is never a good idea to only carry the mandatory minimum for liability coverage. When you do this, you put yourself and other drivers at risk. If you just take a look at the coverage limit for property damage, it is very clear that $15,000 would barely even make a dent in all the expenses that go into purchasing a new vehicle. Anything that is failed to be covered by insurance can come back to you, putting your finances at risk. It would be very wise to expand coverage limits and purchase policy add-ons to be a better-protected driver.

Driving Without Proof of Insurance In Iowa

If you fail to provide proof of insurance in the state of Iowa, you could be hit with some pretty hefty penalties. Outlined below is what you could be facing if you choose to drive without insurance in Iowa.

  • $250 fine
  • Registration suspension
  • Vehicle impoundment
  • License suspension for 1 year depending on the damages

Additional Types of Car Insurance in Iowa

The state of Iowa only requires drivers to carry liability insurance, but there is a variety of other types of car insurance you can add to your policy to get better coverage. Listed below are some common car insurance policy add-ons.

  • Collision: Collision coverage protects your vehicle in the event that you have an accident with another driver. It pays out for damages no matter who was at fault.
  • Comprehensive: This covers your vehicle if it is damaged when not in use. Some common perils comprehensive coverage protects against include theft and extreme weather.
  • Gap Coverage: If your car is totaled before you can pay back your auto loan, gap coverage will cover the difference between your vehicle’s actual cash value and the amount left on yourloan.
  • Medical Payments: Medical payments cover the medical bills you and your passenger(s) accumulate as a result of an accident.
  • Roadside Assistance: If your car breaks down while you are driving, roadside assistance can cover the cost of assistance such as towing, charging a dead battery, or flat tires.
  • Uninsured Motorist Coverage: This coverage helps pay for damages and injuries you have after an accident with a driver who lacks proper insurance.
  • Rental Car Reimbursement: If an accident causes your car to be out of commission for a while, this coverage will pay for the costs of renting a vehicle while you wait for yours.

Car Insurance is Important For Any Iowa Driver

Carrying insurance is not only state law but also makes you a safer driver. Just make sure you have purchased more than the state-mandated minimum liability insurance coverage. Carrying only what is required can leave you seriously unprotected and may put you in a rough financial position. You should always sit down and look at what would be best for you and your assets. Insurance can be a daunting thing to decide on, but at the end of the day, you are going to be thankful you took the time to figure it out.

*This product may not be available in every state, please call an agent for more information.

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