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North Carolina Car Insurance Laws

North Carolina is requires a minimum level of car insurance coverage for its drivers. The sets of laws in the books requires drivers to have this minimum level of car insurance, regardless of driving skill and experience. Enter your ZIP code into our FREE car insurance comparison tool to make sure you meet the minimum levels of insurance and get great prices.

The intent of car insurance laws by any state is to make sure those injured by a driver who causes an accident have some ability to recover financially. Many of these requirements can be easily seen by using our FREE auto insurance comparison tool that shows state differences by inputting your ZIP code into our query. North Carolina’s specific requirements are detail below.

north carolina car insurance lawsState Requirements

North Carolina’s minimum coverage falls into three categories that cover bodily injury, property damage, and personal injury. For the state’s drivers and all who travel through the jurisdiction, a valid car insurance policy must meet the following requirements:

  • $30,000 for Bodily Injury Liability
  • $60,000 per accident for Personal Injury coverage.
  • $25,000 minimum for Property Damage Liability.

In short industry slang, this type of requirement is listed as 30/60/25 insurance coverage plan. Drivers can always have policies that provide greater coverage, such as comprehensive policies. However, to be legal any coverage plan used while in North Carolina needs to at least meet the above minimum requirements. This includes both state residents as well as folks traveling through the state’s territory while in transit.


The simplest of penalties involves a lapse of insurance coverage. If this occurs, a driver has ten days to get new coverage. Once outside the grace period, he then has to pay an administrative fine of $50 for allowing the lapse to go longer. As an added incentive, the state DMV can nullify a driver’s license plate as well, making it impossible to use a given vehicle on the road until the matter is cleared up.

Drivers in North Carolina are expected to have a valid insurance policy in place when driving in the state. A state law enforcement officer can request proof of insurance any time he or she pulls over a driver within the state’s territory or at an accident. Monitoring also occurs through communications between insurance providers and the state Department of Motor Vehicles. When policy changes occur, these companies communicate the change with the DMV, including all new policies, changes, and cancellations.

Where insurance does not exist, the law enforcement will know as soon as he calls in the driver’s license with the DMV. This can trigger large fines as well as suspension of driving privileges and registration of the driver’s vehicle.

car insurance laws north carolinaWhen someone has been caught and convicted for driving without insurance in North Carolina, they will be required as part of the adjudication process to file proof of insurance with the DMV proactively. A specific form will need to be filed that shows the driver has insurance and is complying with court requirements. Processing the paperwork costs forms as well.

When such a driver cancel’s his current policy, the insurance company then files another specific form to notify the DMV of the cancellation. If this occurs during the period of restriction, it can trigger further penalties for the driver. The restriction period typically lasts for three years.

Reducing a Violation’s Impact

Obviously, one of the best ways to avoid penalties in North Carolina regarding car insurance is to have a valid policy in place to begin with. Then a driver needs keep his nose clean while driving and build up a good driving record again. This may be a challenge if driving privileges are suspended for a while or restricted. However, once set back to normal, the affected driver should make it a point not to let insurance coverage lapse again.

If a car insurance violation does occur, the best approach is pay the outstanding fines off as quickly as possible.

One way to make sure a driver’s insurance is valid or to find out the differences of North Carolina versus other states is to utilize car insurance comparison sites. By inputting a ZIP code, a person can quickly pull up the minimum insurance requirements for North Carolina and typical cost quotes for insurance in that state as well. Additionally, the same can be done for other states as well. The electronic information provides a great FREE research tool. Enter your ZIP code now!

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