If you purchase a car in Phoenix and are wondering just what car insurance is required in Arizona, or what your options are, it’s pretty straight forward. Car insurance, like nearly every state, is mandatory. If you take out a loan to acquire the car, the lender will require proof of insurance before the vehicle can be driven off the lot. Otherwise, proof of insurance is necessary when registering the vehicle at the DMV. In no uncertain terms can you legally drive a vehicle in Arizona until you have proof of insurance. Your car insurance policy must meet certain minimum requirements, too, should you have an accident.
Like most states, Arizona is governed by a fault-based system on principles of provable negligence. As the word implies, the financial responsibility for losses resulting from an accident falls upon the person who is at fault for causing the accident. The insurance carrier of the at-fault driver will pay damages up to policy limits. Victims of auto accidents who suffer injuries or damages can proceed by filing a claim with his or her own insurance company to pursue a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company, file directly with the at-fault driver’s insurance carrier with a third-party claim, or simply hire an attorney to file a personal injury lawsuit in civil court against the at-fault driver.
There is a mandatory liability insurance law in Arizona that requires all vehicles that operate on state roads must not only have liability insurance coverage, but the coverage must be provided by a company that legally does business in Arizona. Liability insurance is required of all motor vehicles—including mopeds, motorcycles, and even golf carts. Minimum liability amounts for each motor vehicle driven is: $15,000 for bodily injury or death of one person in an accident caused by the driver of the insured vehicle; $30,000 for total bodily injury or death liability in an accident caused by the driver of the insured vehicle; and $10,000 for property damage per accident caused by the driver of the insured vehicle.
This basic coverage is for medical bills, property damage bills, and any other losses and costs sustained to other drivers, passengers, or pedestrians who were injured or had their vehicle damaged by your negligence. Realistically, you will need more coverage. In the event of a serious crash, you can be personally responsible for damages to all parties that exceed your policy limits. Higher liability insurance will help protect your assets, especially if you are a homeowner, in the event of a serious crash.
If you are at fault in a car accident, the liability coverage will not cover your injuries or the damage to your vehicle. When no one else’s coverage is applicable, you will be responsible for any additional coverage. In addition to liability coverage, you should also be carrying personal injury protection (PIP) or MedPay coverage for your medical bills, and also collision insurance to repair or cover the loss of your car. Though PIP and collision are optional in Arizona, it is in your own best interest to protect yourself and your car by carrying the additional coverage.
Avoid a Lapse in Coverage
Finally, do not allow your car insurance to lapse. If you get caught driving without insurance—pulled over for a routine traffic violation—you will be facing severe penalties. In addition to a hefty fine, there will be near certain suspension of your vehicle’s registration and possibly your driver’s license. You will not be allowed to legally drive the car further until you can provide proof of insurance. Even if an inadvertent lapse resulted in your policy expiring or not being renewed, there is a good chance that your license plate and registration will already be suspended. Arizona insurance companies regularly update the Motor Vehicle Division with such information.
Knowing what car insurance is required in Arizona is important. Make sure you are fully covered before driving and always drive safely. If you’re in the market for a dependable used car check out our huge inventory today! Auto Action is the leading Buy Here Pay Here Arizona used car dealership.