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Washington Car Insurance Requirements

Washington Minimum Car Insurance Requirements

The state of Washington requires all its drivers to carry liability insurance. This is not uncommon as many states have the same mandates for their drivers. The mandatory liability insurance minimums according to Washington law are as follows:

  • $25,000 bodily injury per person
  • $50,000 bodily injury per accident
  • $10,000 property damage per accident

If you have an auto loan or are leasing your vehicle, your lender or leasing company may require you to carry additional car insurance.

Washington Liability Insurance

Liability insurance is the only type of car insurance required in the state of Washington. Liability insurance pays for bodily injuries and property damage you cause in an accident you have found to be at fault for. It is important to remember that your liability insurance policy will never pay for your injuries or damage to your property.

Car Insurance Limits in Washington

Nearly every state sets its own coverage limits for liability insurance. This is the minimum amount of coverage drivers can carry and still be recognized as legal drivers. On the flip side, limits are also the maximum amount your insurer will pay in the event of a claim. When purchasing insurance, you can adjust these limits to get more coverage.

In the state of Washington, the mandatory liability insurance coverage limits are expressed as 25/50/10. Each number refers to a different aspect of liability coverage: bodily injury per person, bodily injury per accident, and property damage, respectively. More on these categories can be found below.

  • Bodily injury per person is the maximum amount of money your insurer will pay to cover a single person’s injuries in an accident you caused.
  • Bodily injury per accident is how much your insurance company will cover for all injuries you cause in an accident.
  • Property damage per accident is the amount your insurance policy will pay out for damage you cause in an accident.

Is Washington’s Mandatory Insurance Minimums Enough Coverage?

The mandatory minimums for insurance coverage in the state of Washington are not enough. If you only carry this minimum liability insurance policy, you will be leaving your assets at great risk. If you cause an accident and the other driver’s car is totaled, $10,000 will barely even begin to make a dent in the expenses. Everything that insurance does not pay for will land back in your lap. It would be wise of you to purchase a policy with increased coverage limits.

Driving Without Insurance in Washington

Penalties for driving without insurance in the state of Washington depend on if you have caused an accident or not. If you have not caused a collision, you could be facing a fine. If you have unfortunately caused an accident while uninsured in Washington, you will be required to pay a fine and maintain an SR22 certificate for a set period of time. You also run the risk of having your license suspended.

Additional Types of Car Insurance in Washington

Since Washington only requires its drivers to carry liability insurance, it would be wise to look into additional coverage to add to your policy. Listed below are some common types of car insurance you can use to expand coverage.

  • Collision: This coverage pays for any damage to your car following a collision.
  • Comprehensive: This covers damage your vehicle sustains when not in use. Some perils covered under this policy include theft and extreme weather.
  • Medical Payments: This coverage will pay for any medical expenses you and your passenger(s) have following an accident.
  • Roadside Assistance: If your car is experiencing some mechanical troubles while on the road, roadside assistance can be there to resolve various issues with your vehicle.
  • Uninsured Motorist Coverage: If you end up in an accident where the at-fault driver does not have any liability insurance, this coverage can help pay for your medical expenses and auto repairs.

Car Insurance is Important For Any Washington Driver

Not only should you obtain an insurance policy to be on the right side of the law, but you should also utilize it to protect yourself in an accident. Purchasing the Washington insurance minimums strictly will not offer you the coverage you think it will. There may be a lot of bills unaccounted for, and you will be expected to pay for them. Take time to really analyze your driving situation to decide the best insurance limits for yourself and any additional coverage you feel you need.

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