In the state of Arizona, driving without car insurance has serious consequences. If you don’t carry the state minimum auto insurance, you face legal fines and suspended driving privileges. And if you cause an accident while driving uninsured, the impact on your finances could be even more severe. It’s simply not worth the risk.

But getting a car insurance policy that meets state requirements is easier and cheaper than you might think. Though the average cost of car insurance in Arizona is $235 per month, some drivers can get car insurance for as low as $28 per month. And you could potentially save hundreds just by comparing customized quotes from different providers with Insurify. You’ll just need to answer a few questions about your vehicle and driving record, and our artificial intelligence technology will do the rest for you so you can compare quotes side by side. 

Minimum Car Insurance Requirements in Arizona 

All drivers in Arizona are required to show proof of financial responsibility. The Motor Vehicle Division of Arizona states that all vehicles need to be insured by a policy with the following minimum coverage limits:

  • $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident in bodily injury liability coverage
  • $15,000 in property damage liability coverage

Bodily injury coverage helps pay for the medical bills and death of another driver and their passengers in an auto accident that you cause. Property damage coverage helps pay for repairs to the other party’s vehicle or property. Neither of these coverages will help with your injuries or damages to your vehicle if you are the at-fault driver in a car accident.

It’s important that you do not allow your insurance coverage to lapse. If you do, your insurance company will contact the MVD, and you’ll be required to verify your insurance status. If you need to update your insurance information, you can do so at AZ MVD Now. 

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Is state minimum car insurance enough in Arizona?

Arizona’s state minimum amount of liability insurance coverage may not be sufficient to protect you from a lawsuit, so you should consider choosing higher liability limits. You should also purchase full coverage auto insurance so that you’re not left with unaffordable repairs or medical bills after you cause an accident. Full coverage car insurance includes both collision and comprehensive coverage in addition to state-mandated liability coverage

Collision coverage helps pay for damages to your vehicle after an accident, no matter who caused it. And comprehensive coverage helps pay for loss or damage from theft, vandalism, and other non-collision events. 

Let’s say you rear-end another motorist or even hit an animal on the road. Without collision and comprehensive coverage, you would be on the hook for all the damages to your vehicle. If you rely on your car to get to work, this could be especially detrimental to your financial situation. While adding collision and comprehensive coverage can nearly double the cost of your insurance premium, in most cases, it’s worth the added protection. 

When you use Insurify to compare policies, you’ll be able to see the differences in premium amounts for each type of coverage. While you’ll pay more for collision and comprehensive coverage, you should still be able to find an affordable policy by comparing rates across insurance carriers. You can also toggle between deductible amounts until you find a policy that fits your budget. 

What is the penalty for driving without car insurance in Arizona?

If law enforcement catches you driving without proof of insurance in Arizona, you could lose your driver’s license for up to a year and pay a fine of up to $1,000 in addition to $35 in reinstatement fees. There may be additional court costs as well. Here’s what you can expect for your first and subsequent offenses:

  • First offense: $500 fine plus a three-month suspension of driver’s license, license plates, and registration
  • Second offense: $750 fine plus a six-month suspension of driver’s license, license plates, and registration
  • Third and subsequent offenses: $1,000 fine plus a one-year suspension of driver’s license, license plates, and registration

After any offense, you’ll need to keep an SR-22 certificate on file for three years. This will increase your car insurance premiums since you’ll be viewed as a high-risk driver by your insurer.

If you can show proof that you haven’t been recently convicted of driving without insurance and that you purchased an Arizona insurance policy that meets the requirements, the state may reduce the penalty. 

Minimum Requirements in Arizona for SR-22 and FR-44 Policies

If your license is suspended due to a violation of Arizona law, you’ll be required to get an SR-22 policy for three years. That means you’ll need to maintain at least the state minimum car insurance coverage limits during that time. If your coverage lapses, you’ll need to start over. You’ll need to obtain the policy from an Arizona car insurance provider that can file an SR-22 with the MVD

Because drivers who need an SR-22 are considered high-risk, you’ll pay extra for this type of policy. However, it’s still possible to find affordable Arizona SR-22 insurance coverage if you use Insurify to compare premiums across insurance providers. 

Additional Coverage Arizona Drivers Should Consider

In addition to comprehensive and collision coverage, you may want to consider medical payments coverage, which helps pay for your medical bills after an auto accident, regardless of who is at fault. Of course, your health insurance will cover your injuries, but if you have a high deductible or don’t want to worry about co-pays, MedPay coverage can step in to fill the gaps. 

You may also want to purchase uninsured motorist or underinsured motorist coverage, which can protect you if you get in an accident with a driver who isn’t carrying sufficient insurance coverage. An estimated 12 percent of Arizona drivers are uninsured, and if you are hit by one of these motorists, it can be difficult to collect compensation for your injuries or damages to your vehicle. While you are welcome to file a lawsuit against an uninsured driver in Arizona, they may not have the assets for you to collect. Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage kicks in to immediately cover expenses when an uninsured driver is at fault. 

Roadside assistance is another helpful add-on that most drivers should consider. This coverage helps pay for towing, flat tire replacement, unlocking your vehicle, and other services that can get you on the road again. 

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Arizona Minimum Car Insurance FAQ

Is car insurance mandatory in Arizona state?

Yes. To drive legally in Arizona, you must carry a policy with a minimum of $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident in bodily injury liability coverage, plus $15,000 in property damage liability coverage.

In what situations do drivers in Arizona have the right to sue?

Arizona is not a no-fault state. It is a tort state, which means you have the right to sue the other driver for any damages or injuries they cause not covered by their insurance. You have two years from the date of the car accident to file suit against the party responsible for your injuries or damages.

Are there alternative proofs of financial responsibility in Arizona?

Unless you are a self-insurer with more than 10 cars, you’ll need to either maintain an active auto insurance policy or make a deposit of $40,000 in cash or securities with the state treasurer. That deposit satisfies Arizona’s financial responsibility requirements, and if you cause an accident, that money would be used to pay for any damages or injuries you cause.

Updated July 19, 2021

Lindsay Frankel is a full-time freelance writer specializing in personal finance and insurance topics. Her work has been featured in publications such as LendingTree, The Balance, Coverage.com, Bankrate, NextAdvisor, and FinanceBuzz. For the past year, she has written about car insurance for Insurify.