General District of Columbia Insurance Guidelines
District of Columbia currently requires that all drivers be covered under liability insurance and must have an active Washington, DC insurance policy. Proof of insurance must always be accessible in the vehicle. District of Columbia drivers are required to show their insurance info when pulled over or involved in an accident.
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Minimum Liability Coverage in District of Columbia
District of Columbia's minimum liability amounts are as follows:
- $25,000 bodily injury per person
- $50,000 total bodily injury per accident
- $10,000 total property damage per accident
These are only the minimum requirements set by the state. Experts advise protecting your assets by getting more coverage than the state-mandated minimums as these limits tend not to keep pace with the ever increasing costs of car repairs and medical bills. Most drivers also add collision and comprehensive coverage to their policies to cover possible damage to their own cars as well.
Penalties for Driving Without Insurance
The penalties for driving without insurance in District of Columbia are:
- Citation by MPD
Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage
Some states require drivers to carry UM/UIM, or uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. This coverage protects a driver if they get in an accident where the other party does not have auto insurance. District of Columbia requires UM/UIM coverage. The minimum UM/UIM coverage amounts for District of Columbia are $25,000 per person uninsured motorist bodily injury. $50,000 per accident uninsured motorist coverage. $5,000 in uninsured motorist property damage coverage (subject to $200 deductible).
Some states have “No-Fault” laws where a policy holder will be reimbursed by their insurance company without proof of fault, and restricted in the right to seek reimbursement through the court system for losses caused by other parties. District of Columbia is not a “No-Fault” state.
Personal Injury Protection (PIP)
Some states have Personal Injury Protection or “PIP” regulations requiring drivers to carry PIP insurance. This is an extension of auto insurance that covers medical expenses, lost wages and/or other damages. District of Columbia does not require drivers to purchase PIP insurance.
SR-22 Requirements for District of Columbia
An SR-22 form is a vehicle liability insurance document to be filed with a state’s DMV as proof that a driver has the minimum required liability insurance coverage for that state. SR-22 filings are usually only required to reinstate driving privileges after an offense such as a DUI conviction, uninsured auto accident or driving without insurance. District of Columbia requires an SR-22 filing for driver’s license reinstatement.
District of Columbia DUI Laws
It is illegal to operate a motor vehicle in the United States with a BAC (Blood Alcohol Content) level of 0.08% or higher. All states have driver licensing laws that state that a licensed driver has given implied consent to a field sobriety test and/or method of determining BAC. This means that a driver is required to take such tests if a law enforcement officer has reasonable grounds for administering one, with automatic penalties for refusing to comply. If BAC is determined to be above the legal level a driver will be penalized in various ways. The first DUI offense penalties for District of Columbia are:
- 90 days maximum jail time
- $300 - $1,000 fine
- 6-month license suspension
Additional Information on Insurance for District of Columbia
For more information, please contact District of Columbia Department of Insurance and Securities Regulation: 1-202-727-8000 or visit their website at disb.dc.gov.