Indiana Car Insurance Requirements
According to the Indiana Department of Insurance all drivers must provide proof of their ability to meet their financial obligations in the event of an accident in order to legally register and drive a car. Unlike some states that make car insurance the only option, Indiana offers four options:
- liability insurance from a state approved provider
- a $40,000 deposit left with the state treasurer
- written proof of a trust fund in the amount of $40,000 or more
- a surety bond issued by a state approved company
For most Indiana drivers a standard car insurance policy is the best option. It provides full protection and satisfaction of legal requirements without requiring a lot of upfront money. Indiana drivers can choose a top-of-the-line policy or cheap car insurance which only includes the following minimum items:
- property damage liability – $10,000 per accident
- underinsured motorist coverage – $50,000 per accident for bodily injury
- uninsured motorist coverage – $25,000 bodily injury for one victim; $50,000 for bodily injury for multiple victims
Indiana is a bit unusual in that the insurance to cover bodily injury and death is based on one, or all, of the drivers involved having insufficient coverage or no insurance at all. This is because Indiana’s motor vehicle law is a fault-based. That means an investigation assigns blame after an accident, requiring each insurance company to pay accordingly. If you’re involved in accident with someone who doesn’t have enough insurance, your own liability policy makes up the difference.
Keeping Insurance in Force
As does almost every other state, Indiana mandates drivers maintain continuous insurance coverage during the entire period of vehicle registration. It’s a wise idea to keep a record of your car insurance policy in your vehicle in the event you’re pulled over or involved in an accident.
Indiana has also recently instituted an electronic reporting system that allows insurance companies to file forms on behalf of their customers online. Insurance companies are not required to participate, but it’s better for you if they do. Those that participate are better able to make sure BMV records stay up to date.
Penalties for Insurance Violations
Insurance violations in Indiana are considered class A violations, resulting in fines and suspensions of registration and driver’s license. A first offense is worth a 90-day suspension while subsequent offenses could result in twelve-month suspensions. In order to have a license and registration reinstated, fees (beginning at $150 and moving upward) are assessed. In addition, those convicted of insurance violations are required to file and maintain an SR-22 form for at least a year.