Vermont Car Insurance Requirements
According to Vermont Statute (V.S.A., Title 23, Chapter 11, §800) it is illegal to operate a motor vehicle on public highways unless it is covered by a minimum amount of liability insurance. This is part of the state’s financial responsibility law. Unfortunately, purchasing a car insurance policy is the only option for Vermont drivers.
There are two types of insurance policies meeting the requirements of the Vermont statute. The first is the standard liability policy which covers bodily injury liability and property damage liability. The minimum amounts of coverage required under a standard liability policy include:
- $25,000 per accident for a single victim’s injuries or death
- $50,000 per accident for combined coverage for multiple victims
- $10,000 per accident for property damage liability
The second type of insurance is known as “financial responsibility insurance.” This is an additional insurance product that covers the driver rather than a vehicle. It accomplishes the same thing as an SR-22 in other states. If you’re required by Vermont law to obtain financial responsibility insurance, it’s usually because you’ve been found guilty of a serious offense like DWI/DUI or hit and run.
More often than not a financial responsibility insurance requirement will be imposed for three years. During that time your insurance rates are going to be extremely high by comparison. It’s absolutely vital you keep your nose clean during that term if you want to be able to drop the financial responsibility insurance after the three years.
Violations of Vermont Insurance Law
When you buy car insurance in Vermont your carrier is obligated to furnish you with an ID insurance card. This card should include your name, the make and model of your vehicle, the policy dates, your policy number, and the limits provided by your insurance policy. You must carry this card with you and provide it at the request of a police officer.
You’ll also need to present your ID card when you register your vehicle. Should you present a fraudulent card you will be charged with a crime and prosecuted accordingly. Otherwise, most other types of insurance law violations carry a variety of fines and penalties.
If you’re found driving without insurance you’ll have to pay a fine, you’ll have points added to your license, and you’ll be forced to obtain a financial responsibility insurance policy for three years. In that case your insurance company will complete and submit an SR-22 certificate which goes to the state. Should you allow your insurance policy to lapse during the three-year period your driver’s license and registration will be suspended until you take care of the matter.