There’s nothing more exciting than driving to the places you can’t wait to get to. That is, of course, if you’re properly insured.
In the state of Minnesota, driving without car insurance has serious consequences. If you don’t carry the minimum auto insurance coverage that state law requires, you can face high legal fines and even potential jail time.
Driving uninsured is simply not worth the risk. Especially if getting an insurance policy that meets coverage requirements in Minnesota is much easier and cheaper than you may think. Use a comparison tool like Insurify to compare real-life car insurance quotes from dozens of companies in under five minutes and save an average of $489 a year.
Minimum Car Insurance Requirements in Minnesota
Auto insurance protects you from financial loss after a car accident or bodily injury. You agree to pay a certain monthly premium, and the insurance company agrees to cover any financial damages you suffer. Insurance policies come with different deductibles (what you have to pay out of pocket before your insurance kicks in) and payout limits (the maximum amount your insurer will cover).
To drive legally in Minnesota, you must carry the minimum amount of coverage state law requires. At a minimum, you need liability coverage, personal injury protection (PIP) coverage, uninsured motorist coverage, and underinsured motorist coverage.
- Liability coverage: If you’re at fault during an accident, liability coverage covers the damage to the other driver’s vehicle. It also covers bodily injury that the other driver has sustained. Liability coverage does not apply to the damage to your vehicle or your bodily injury.
- Personal injury protection coverage (PIP): If you’re injured after an accident and suffer economic losses due to that injury, this policy covers your medical bills, lost wages, and replacement services for you and your household members. Minnesota is a no-fault state, so PIP provides coverage regardless of who caused the accident. This is why PIP is also known as no-fault insurance.
- Uninsured motorist coverage: If you run out of your PIP coverage, uninsured motorist coverage pays for your medical expenses. It also applies when the other driver was at fault but was driving uninsured.
- Underinsured motorist coverage: This coverage is also an extension of your personal injury protection (PIP) coverage, and you can use it when the other driver is at fault but doesn’t have enough liability insurance to cover your medical expenses.
Your insurance policy needs to cover certain amounts in damages to satisfy Minnesota law. According to the Minnesota Department of Commerce, you need to have the following minimum limits to drive legally:
|Liability coverage||$30,000 bodily injury liability per person
$60,000 bodily injury liability per accident
$10,000 property damage liability per accident
|Personal injury protection (PIP) coverage||$40,000 in bodily injury per person
($20,000 to cover medical costs and $20,000 for non-medical expenses, such as lost wages and replacement services)
|Uninsured motorist coverage||$25,000 in bodily injury per person
$50,000 in bodily injury per accident
|Underinsured motorist coverage||$25,000 in bodily injury per person
$50,000 in bodily injury per accident
Keep in mind that if you’re leasing your vehicle or bought it with a loan, your lender may require you to carry collision and comprehensive insurance in addition to the minimum required Minnesota auto insurance.
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Is state minimum car insurance enough in Minnesota?
The minimum car insurance is what you need to drive legally in Minnesota. But you may consider higher coverage limits if you want to have enough to fully cover damages in the event of an accident and feel safer behind the wheel.
How much insurance coverage you need depends on your budget and your vehicle, so make sure to do the math and get the policy that provides you with all the protection you need.
There are also certain damages that the minimum required coverage does not apply to, such as:
- Damage to your vehicle after an accident
- Damage to your vehicle after hitting an object, such as a fence or a tree
- Damage from hitting an animal
- Natural disasters, such as floods and fires
If you want to protect yourself from these damages, you may consider adding collision and comprehensive coverages to your car insurance policy.
- Collision coverage: This policy covers repair expenses when your vehicle is damaged in an accident that involves another vehicle or object. It also compensates you for the actual cash value of your vehicle if it is totaled. Collision coverage is a great addition to your liability policy so that not just the other driver’s vehicle is covered, but yours is, too.
- Comprehensive coverage: This coverage option complements collision coverage and covers damage to your vehicle that occurs during an event that was not a collision with another vehicle or object. It applies when your vehicle is stolen or vandalized or needs repairs after being through a natural disaster or a run-in with an animal.
Adding collision and comprehensive coverage to your insurance policy is a great way to protect yourself against high out-of-pocket costs.
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What is the penalty for driving without car insurance in Minnesota?
Driving uninsured in Minnesota is illegal under the state’s insurance laws. You need to carry at least the minimum coverage to be able to drive legally, or your driving will be considered a misdemeanor.
If you fail to provide proof of financial responsibility when you’re pulled over, the officer will issue you a citation. Within 10 business days, the Department of Public Safety will send you a written notice requesting proof of insurance. If you fail to provide proof of insurance within the next 10 business days, you will face serious legal and financial consequences.
If you can provide proof of insurance within 10 business days from the notice’s issue date, you will not face any further consequences.
Legal and financial penalties and fines for uninsured drivers in Minnesota increase dramatically after your second offense.
For your first and second offenses, you can expect a fine between $200 and $1,000; a suspension of your driver’s license, registration, and license plates for up to 30 days; and possible community service. You will also have to pay a $30 reinstatement and SR-22 fee. Moreover, your vehicle may be impounded.
After your second offense, you can expect higher fines, between $200 and $3,000; suspension of your driver’s license, registration, and license plates for up to one year; possible community service; and/or up to 90 days in jail. You will also have to pay a $30 reinstatement and SR-22 fee. Your vehicle can get impounded, and you could be found guilty of a gross misdemeanor.
Minimum Requirements in Minnesota for SR-22 Policies
If you’ve been caught driving without car insurance in Minnesota, you will need a special form called an SR-22 to get back on the road.
An SR-22 is a special form that proves that you carry the minimum car insurance coverage required by state law. It is also known as the “Certificate of Financial Responsibility” or “SR-22 bond.”
If you were caught driving uninsured and now need an SR-22, the first step to take is to purchase a car insurance policy. Keep in mind that some insurance companies don’t offer coverage for an SR-22. When shopping for a new policy, you should research which insurers offer coverage with an SR-22 and let your insurance agent know up front that you need it.
Sounds like too much work? It is. Instead of spending hours researching insurance companies and filling out the same questionnaire over and over, use AI-powered Insurify to compare dozens of real-life car insurance rates and find the best option that works with your driving record in just a few clicks.
Additional Coverage Minnesota Drivers Should Consider
If you want to fill smaller gaps in your car insurance coverage, you may consider optional add-ons that supplement your policy for more comprehensive protection.
- Roadside assistance: You can add this coverage to your policy to make sure you have access to the services you need if you find yourself stranded by a dead battery or running out of gas. Life happens, and roadside assistance insurance is a great option if you want to prevent unpleasant surprises.
- Gap insurance: Also known as “guaranteed asset protection,” this add-on covers the difference between the amount you owe on your car and its actual cash value after an accident that results in a total loss. You can also consider gap insurance if you’re leasing or paying off your car, and some lenders might require it.
Another popular add-on is MedPay, also known as medical payments coverage. This policy can cover expenses like medical bills, ambulance fees, and funeral costs. However, Minnesota law already requires you to carry PIP (personal injury protection), which offers more comprehensive coverage than MedPay. So, for a driver in Minnesota, MedPay coverage is superfluous.
Frequently Asked Questions: Minnesota Minimum Car Insurance
Is car insurance mandatory in Minnesota?
Yes. Car insurance coverage is mandatory in Minnesota, and driving uninsured can result in serious legal and financial consequences. If you’re caught driving uninsured, your insurance premiums are also likely to be much higher than average. Use Insurify to get side-by-side personalized quotes from dozens of companies to get the best deal.
In what situations do drivers in Minnesota have the right to sue?
Minnesota is a no-fault car insurance state. It means that you’ll typically use your personal injury protection policy to cover your medical bills, lost wages, and other accident-related expenses, regardless of who was at fault for the accident. To find the best personal injury protection policy for you, use Insurify to compare 10+ personalized quotes in under five minutes.
Are there alternative proofs of financial responsibility in Minnesota?
Drivers in Minnesota must show proof of financial responsibility to drive, and car insurance is the easiest way to do it. Alternatively, you can decide to pay a bond to the DMV. The minimum bond amount in Minnesota is 1.5 times the appraised value of your vehicle. You can also make a cash deposit with the DMV to show good faith that you can cover all damages that you cause and suffer.