Explore the minimum auto insurance requirements to drive legally in the state of Georgia.
Like most states, Georgia requires a certain amount of car insurance coverage for every driver who takes to the road. This is meant to protect you and the other drivers with whom you share the road.
Having proof of insurance is mandatory in Georgia, and must be shown at the behest of any law enforcement official. The minimum auto insurance limits for the state of Georgia can be found below.
Georgia is a comparative fault — or comparative negligence — state. This means that fault is assigned proportionately based on the amount of fault that is assigned. Essentially, this means that separate drivers can share fault and receive awards based on the percentage of fault that they are given. Drivers who are found at least 50% at-fault for an accident in Georgia are not able to recover any damages or compensation.
Liability car insurance is the only insurance coverage required in the state of Georgia. It pays for property damage or bodily injuries incurred from an accident that you cause. It’s important to remember that liability insurance never pays for your injuries or damages to your own property. It only ever covers injuries or property damage that you cause to others.
Liability coverage contains two specific types of coverage: bodily injury (BI) and property damage (PD) liability. The bodily injury portion covers any medical bills — or funeral expenses — associated with a car accident in which you are at-fault. Property damage liability steps in to cover damages you inflict on the property of another. See a more detailed breakdown of these coverages below.
Almost every state imposes a minimum amount of car insurance in order for its drivers to be considered legal. You’ll often see this referred to asliability limits. The limit is simply the bare minimum of coverage you are required to have as a driver. In the case of Georgia, only liability insurance is required. For an added premium, you can raise your liability limits to provide more coverage.
Liability insurance limits are often written out as three separate numbers, 25/50/25. Known as a split limit, this separates the coverage amounts on offer. These are commonly divided into three buckets: per-person, per-accident, and property damage.
Meeting your state’s required minimums doesn’t mean you are properly insured. While Georgia’s liability insurance minimums are higher than those of some other states, this level of coverage could leave you at risk. Unfortunately, serious injuries can easily exhaust your $25,000 BI limit for a single person, and even your per-accident limit can run out quickly if you injure more than one person.
Similarly, $25,000 is a relatively low amount of property damage coverage. Keep in mind: this is slightly less than what many drivers pay for a new car. If you were to damage multiple vehicles — or other structures — damages could hit this threshold quickly.
Once your accident limits are reached, you are personally liable for the remainder of the expenses. As such, it is strongly suggested to increase your liability limits beyond this required amount.
Operating a motor vehicle without insurance in Georgia is a misdemeanor, resulting in the following penalties:
You can expect reinstatement fees for your license, along with a fee for allowing your auto insurance to lapse. Accidents resulting in serious injury or death may lead to felony charges, triggering incarceration or fines.
Georgia law only requires you to carry liability insurance in order to drive legally. Still, additional coverage can add further protection and should be seriously considered.
Georgia is a diminished value state, meaningdrivers are allowed to recover diminished valuefrom the at-fault party’s insurance company.When your vehicle experiences an accident, even if it is fully repaired to its pre-loss condition, the resale value decreases. The involvement in a collision makes your car’s value lesser than similar vehicles that have not experienced an accident. A diminished value claim allows you to recoup the losses you might experience when selling your car.
Since Georgia is one of the 15 states that offers compensation for diminution in value, you may file by contacting the at-fault party’s insurer. In order to file a diminished value claim in Georgia, certain requirements must be met:
Unfortunately, not every driver on the roads is as attentive as they should be. Even taking your eyes off the road for a second can lead to an accident. As such, having the right insurance coverage is crucial if you want to avoid risk and protect your assets. State minimums are rarely enough coverage to truly keep you protected, and can be increased for a relatively low additional premium.
Shopping for the right auto insurance policy is a great way to stay protected while on the road. The Zebra can help you find and compare side by side insurance quotes giving you a clear sense of the coverage options out there, as well as what they’ll cost.