Though many foodies rave about the state’s famous blue crabs, plenty of people skip out on that particular Maryland delicacy. But skipping out on auto insurance in the Old Line State isn’t an option. As in most states, Maryland motorists are expected to abide by certain insurance minimums. Getting caught without insurance coverage here brings about some pretty hefty penalties. 

Plus, driving uninsured puts you at extreme financial risk. Now you can narrow in on your cheapest insurance options fast by using Insurify. Unlike other sites that make you enter detail after detail while giving you the runaround, Insurify returns top insurance quotes for free without all the hassle. 

Instead of having to call insurance agent after insurance agent to find out about pricing and coverage options, you can go online and have everything you need to know right at your fingertips in minutes. Insurify makes it easy to toggle through optional coverages and land on the Maryland auto insurance premium and amount of coverage you feel most comfortable with. It’s the easiest way to capture current insurance rates for your area fast.

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Minimum Car Insurance Requirements in Maryland 

Although you can purchase as big an insurance policy as you feel is necessary to protect yourself financially, there are specific auto insurance coverage minimums that drivers must have to meet insurance laws in Maryland. Mandatory minimum insurance requirements include liability coverage (in case you are at fault), uninsured motorist coverage, and personal injury protection (or PIP).  

Liability insurance coverage includes money set aside to pay for bodily injury (BI) and motorist property damage (PD). For bodily injury, liability limits are $30,000 per person per accident and $60,000 total per accident. BI pays medical expenses, lost income, and pain and suffering to passengers in both vehicles and pedestrians. Maryland drivers must have a minimum amount of $15,000 per accident in property damage coverage. Property damage liability pays for damages to another person’s car or property that are a result of an accident when you are at fault.  

>>>MORE: How Much Car Insurance Do I Need?

Uninsured motorist (UM) coverage exists to provide financial assistance if you have an accident with an uninsured motorist or are involved in a hit-and-run. Minimums for UM in Maryland are $30,000 per person per accident and $60,000 total per accident for bodily injury. The per-accident minimum for property damage under UM is $15,000. In Maryland, UM coverage also includes underinsured motorist coverage (UIM).

Personal injury protection (PIP) helps pay for injuries and lost income regardless of who is at fault for the accident. State minimum PIP coverage in Maryland is $2,500. Some people choose to waive PIP to lower their insurance premium, but it isn’t recommended. Even though you may already have medical insurance, PIP makes sure that medical bills get paid fast and helps drivers recoup lost wages if they are out of work due to injury or emotional stress.

Is state minimum car insurance enough in Maryland?

The state of Maryland’s laws direct motorists on the minimum amount of insurance they must carry to drive legally. Though you may be obeying state law as far as your coverage amount is concerned, you could still be leaving yourself open to financial difficulty in certain circumstances. To account for this, there are other types of coverage you can buy. These types of coverage are often called supplemental or optional coverages

While you need minimum coverage to drive legally in Maryland, you should consider other coverage types to ensure that your policy is as complete as possible. Nobody likes surprise expenses. In addition to the required coverage, supplemental coverages exist to protect you financially from events that minimum liability coverage does not. For example, if you are at fault for an accident, liability coverage doesn’t pay for damages to your vehicle. The supplemental car insurance coverage you should consider in this scenario is collision coverage

What happens if your car is stolen or a falling branch crushes your car’s front end? Minimum liability coverage doesn’t take care of this, either. Comprehensive coverage, another supplemental coverage worth considering, does. Comprehensive coverage protects your vehicle in cases of vandalism as well. 

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

Driving without insurance in Maryland could cost you a whole lot of time and trouble (not to mention some of your hard-earned cash). Firstly, your driver’s license can be suspended by the motor vehicle administration. This means no driving until you can get things cleared up. Uninsured motorist penalty fees in this state are $150 for the first 30 days and $7 for each day after. And considering that you can’t renew suspended registrations until all violations are cleared, that can add up quickly! Two months of uninsured driving will cost you $360. 

>>>MORE: Car Insurance for High-Risk Drivers

A restoration fee of $25 per uninsured vehicle is also tacked on, which brings you to a whopping $385. And though it may be tempting, falsifying proof of insurance is a bad idea. If you get caught, you could spend up to $1,000 in fines or a year in jail. To make matters worse, if you fail to pay your fines promptly, your case can be sent to collections. There, fines can be subject to a 17 percent collection fee. There’s also the matter of points on your driving record. Points for driving without insurance often stay on your record for several years and result in higher policy premiums.    

Minimum Requirements in Maryland for SR-22 Policies

If you’re convicted of a DUI or other serious driving offense in Maryland, you could lose your license and your insurance. Not every car insurance company wants to insure a high-risk driver. There are some companies, however, that specialize in providing SR-22 insurance (the kind of coverage you’ll need) for drivers who need to reinstate their license and get back on the road legally. 

>>>MORE: Car Insurance Estimator

According to Maryland law, SR-22 insurance should at least cover the state minimum, which is $20k/$40k/$15k for personal injury, per accident injury, and property damage. Insurance companies providing SR-22 insurance send proof to the state that you indeed have coverage, but it’s not without a cost. Often, SR-22 insurance can be pricey, so shopping around for coverage that you can afford is the way to go. In Maryland, you’ll have to carry SR-22 insurance for three to five years, depending on sentencing instructions.  

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Additional Coverage Maryland Drivers Should Consider

In addition to the minimum liability coverage and supplemental coverages like collision and comprehensive, other coverages exist to take care of the many expenses that arise from an accident or simply owning a vehicle. 

Medical payments coverage is one type of supplemental insurance that can keep you from experiencing high medical expenses related to injury and even death. MedPay pays for claims related to rehabilitative, surgical, chiropractic, X-ray, dental, prosthetic, professional nursing, and funeral expenses. Don’t confuse medical payments coverage with PIP (which is part of the state’s required minimums). PIP only pays for medical expenses.

Though you want to have enough coverage to take care of things when big things happen, even the little things can become costly without the coverage to offset it. For this reason, other coverages like rental reimbursement coverage and transportation expense coverage exist. Rental reimbursement coverage can pay most or all of your rental vehicle costs if your vehicle is being repaired after an accident. 

Transportation expense coverage can cover things like car rental and bus fare while your vehicle is being repaired. You can even get supplemental coverage that pays towing expenses should you get stuck on the side of the road. The decision is up to you.

Some may be skeptical about getting more insurance coverage than just the minimum amount required. However, plenty of car insurance discounts exist that can help keep rates low, even on more comprehensive plans. One such discount is given to shoppers who bundle their homeowners or renters insurance with their auto insurance

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Frequently Asked Questions: Maryland Minimum Car Insurance

Is car insurance mandatory in Maryland?

Yes. Drivers in Maryland must carry insurance issued by a company licensed to do business in the state. The mandatory minimum insurance required here is $30,000 for bodily injury, $60,000 for two or more people, and $15,000 in property damage.

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

All drivers have the right to sue after a car accident, especially if there is a dispute over liability. Drivers can also sue in drunk driving cases or cases where the other driver is uninsured. However, Maryland is a contributory negligence state, which means that if the person suing (or plaintiff) is even 1 percent at fault, they cannot recover any money.

Are there alternative proofs of financial responsibility in Maryland?

People who can provide proof that they can adequately pay damages and other accident costs on their own—without insurance—can register a vehicle in Maryland. Transportation Article 17-103 outlines these alternative proofs of financial responsibility. It basically states that if a person can meet the state minimum insurance requirements using another form of security (cash, bonds, etc.), they can self-insure. Those who choose to self-insure are also assessed an annual sum of up to $750.

Updated September 9, 2021

Jeannette Wisniewski is a technology writer whose passion is encouraging people to engage with technology by making it more understandable and more interesting. Though she enjoys writing business copy for a wide range of subjects, she is most inspired by emerging tech and its applications. She is a graduate of San Jose State University, a Georgia Peach at heart, and happy to call Boise, ID home.