The 5 top-selling auto insurers in Georgia are also the top 5 auto insurance companies in the U.S. In fact, all of the popular national auto insurance companies operate in Georgia. Georgia also has a large selection of local and regional auto insurance providers, led by Georgia Farm Bureau.
Largest Georgia Auto Insurance Companies, by Premiums
Among all the Georgia auto insurance companies, big and small, 21st Century, American National, Twin City Fire Insurance Company, the Hartford Insurance, and Safe Auto seem to be the cheapest options overall, according to recent WalletHub research.
WalletHub collected more than 9,500 quotes from 73 auto insurers in the state to come up with its list of the Best Cheap Car Insurance in Georgia for 2019. This can be a useful starting point in your search for good coverage at a good rate.
The cheapest states for car insurance are Iowa, Vermont and Nebraska, according to WalletHub's Cheap Car Insurance Study. They are the cheapest states for auto insurance in large part because they have low population density and relatively few uninsured motorists. In contrast, New York, Florida and New Jersey are the most expensive states for car insurance.… read full answer
Population and uninsured motorists are the two main reasons for variations in policy costs from state to state. After all, fewer people means fewer drivers on the road, which means fewer accidents. And a low percentage of uninsured motorists means that more of the people on the road are responsible drivers. It also means insurance companies face fewer claims from their own customers who've been hit by uninsured motorists. Both a low population and low numbers of uninsured motorists keep claims and premiums down.
In addition to the population and number of uninsured drivers, other factors that affect car insurance costs include state laws, crime rates, and special weather hazards. State laws govern how much insurance coverage drivers are required to carry, and no-fault laws impact insurers' risks. Crime rates mainly impact comprehensive coverage, which covers losses due to theft or violence. Weather hazards - like hurricanes, hail or snowstorms - cause more breakdowns and accidents.
No, Georgia is not a no-fault state for auto insurance. Georgia is an “at-fault” or “tort” state, which means the person who is at fault for a car accident is responsible for paying for other people’s injuries and property damage resulting from the accident. Additionally, unlike in no-fault states, drivers in Georgia can file lawsuits to seek compensation for even basic medical expenses after an accident.… read full answer
In typical no-fault states, drivers are required to carry personal injury protection (PIP) insurance to pay for their own medical expenses after a car accident, regardless of fault. In Georgia, neither PIP nor MedPay (a common alternative) is required.
Key Things to Know About At-Fault Insurance in Georgia
When an accident occurs, the insurance company for each driver who was involved will assign an adjuster to determine who was at fault. To collect payment for their losses, victims must file a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company.
Depending on how long fault takes to be determined, drivers can file a claim with their own insurance company if they have coverage applicable to their own expenses, such as collision and comprehensive Their insurer can then recoup the cost from the at-fault driver’s insurer if the policyholder is determined to be not at fault.
Georgia uses a comparative negligence system, meaning drivers can only collect damages equal to the proportion of the accident that they were not responsible for. For example, if you are determined to be 60% at fault for the accident, you can only collect 40% of your total damages.
Being an “at-fault” state helps keep Georgia’s insurance costs relatively low compared to other states.
Georgia requires all drivers to carry liability insurance, which is a type of insurance that pays for others’ expenses after an at-fault car accident, such as damage to others’ vehicles and their medical expenses.
Although you’re only required to carry liability insurance in Georgia, you may want to purchase types of coverage that will pay for your own expenses after an accident. For example, MedPay can pay your medical bills even if you were at fault for an accident, and collision and comprehensive insurance will cover damage to your vehicle.
The penalty for driving without insurance in Georgia is a fine of at least $200, loss of driving privileges, criminal conviction and potential jail time. Georgia is not lenient with drivers who get caught on the road without insurance, even first-time offenders.
For a first offense, you will be charged with a misdemeanor that remains on your record permanently. This can affect your career and housing opportunities. You will also have to pay a court-ordered fine. And your license will be suspended for 60 days, with no hardship allowances. That means you won’t even be able to drive to work, school or doctor’s appointments. On top of all that, it’s possible—although unlikely—to spend up to a year in jail for a first offense in Georgia.… read full answer
The penalties go up for multiple offenses within a five-year period. In addition to higher fines, of up to $1,000, you can lose your license for as long as six months. The chances of serving jail time also increase with each offense.
Penalties for Driving Without Insurance in Georgia
Type of Offense
License and/or Registration Suspended?
Maximum Fines & Fees
No Proof of Insurance (Can Prove Coverage)
$25 mandatory fee
1st Offense With No Coverage
up to 1 year
$200 - $1,000
Repeat Offense (No Coverage)
Yes, no more than 12 months
$200 - $1,000
Consequences of an Insurance Lapse in Georgia
If you don’t actually get caught by a police officer for driving without insurance, Georgia imposes automatic penalties for just letting your insurance lapse. If your insurance is ever terminated or expired, your insurance company must electronically notify the Georgia Department of Driver Services (DDS). The DDS gives you 30 days from the date of the expiration to provide proof of new insurance.
There are no penalties if they receive your new insurance information within the 30-day period, as long as there has been no lapse in coverage (10+ days without coverage). If there has been a lapse, you’ll face fines of $85 - $185, depending on whether it is a first, second or third offense.
If you don’t provide proof of new insurance during the 30 days, you’ll get a “Notice of Pending Suspension.” That gives you 30 additional days to pay your fine and provide proof of insurance, or else your vehicle’s registration will be suspended.
In addition to all the penalties the state imposes, auto insurance rates are about 30% higher on average once you’ve been convicted of driving without insurance or you’ve allowed your coverage to lapse. You may even need to find an insurer in Georgia that works with high-risk drivers, such as Esurance, Dairyland or Serenity Insurance.
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