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Auto Insurance Companies California
Getting low-cost car insurance is a lot easier than it may seem, especially if you live in California.
Here are the latest stats pertaining to California car insurance. This page deals with obtaining the lowest cost auto insurance package for California drivers.
Minimum Liability for California Vehicles
By state law, California car owners are required to buy a minimum auto insurance coverage of 15/30/5. That means vehicle owners in California must purchase at least $15,000 in protection against bodily injury to the insured driver, $30,000 in per-accident protection for injuries to others, and no less than $5,000 in coverage against property damage.
Despite these numbers, car insurance minimums rarely cover the cost of an accident. That's why the Insurance Information Institute recommends 100/300 coverage for all U.S. drivers.
Penalties for Uninsured Drivers in California
The standard penalty imposed for driving an uninsured vehicle in the state of California is a fine of up to $500 and a suspended license for up to one month.
Average Rates of Auto Insurance Companies California
The average annual auto insurance premium in the state of California was about $1,819 in 2013, making California the 7th most expensive state in the nation to buy car insurance.
The national average annual car insurance premium for the same time frame was around $1,510.
Auto insurance premiums are determined by factors like local climate, crime rates, economic stability, percentage of uninsured drivers, availability of other local insurance companies, population density, and average commute times, to name just a few.
Actuaries also base annual rates on the driver's age, gender, marital status, driving record, vehicle type, and other characteristics.
Bad credit? No problem. California law prohibits using credit scores to determine premiums by personal auto insurance providers. State law also requires that California car insurance carriers consider mileage and driving records before they consider geographic location.
Snagging Discounts on California Car Insurance
California car owners can lower their auto insurance costs in a number of different ways. For example,
Low income California residents can apply for the CLCA program, which reduces liability limits to 10/20/3. This low cost program is available to California residents 19 or older with good driving records, for vehicles worth $20,000 or less.
Another way to lower costs is if you decide to take your car off the road, you can put it on Planned Non-Operation (PNO) status. This allows you to legally drop insurance coverage until you are once again ready to drive the vehicle.
If you live in a Metro area, consider just not driving for three years. This earns you a perfect driving record, which will make you eligible for several of the following discounts.
Drivers who avoid accidents for three years earn an Accident-Free discount
Avoid moving violations for three years and earn aGood Driver discount of up to 20 percent.
Academic excellence is rewarded with a Good Student discount.
People who own more than one car can score a Multiple Auto discount.
Senior citizens earn a discount for completing a defensive driving course.
Other types of car insurance deals include the Multiple Policy discount, the Passive Restraint discount and the Vehicle Safety Discount, for instance.
Based on 2013 consumer reports, the most popular auto insurance providers for California drivers are AAA, Allstate, Esurance, Geico, Progressive, State Farm, 21st Century and Liberty Mutual Insurance.
They're all about the same, so simply select the carrier that gives the lowest quote.
Call several carriers to obtain and compare free quotes. Don't forget to ask about their discounts.
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