Auto Insurance in Florida (FL)
If You Are Paying More Than $1,342.16 on Auto Insurance in Florida, You Are Paying Too Much.
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Auto Insurance Industry in Florida
- An average consumer pays $1,672.00 on auto insurance
- 220 of every 100,000 vehicles are reported stolen every year
- Accident fatality rate of 1.31%
- Of all accidents: 60% are road-way accidents, 33% are intersection accidents, and 12% of all accidents involve at least 1 truck.
As a Florida resident, you need to show financial responsibility if you are involved in a vehicle accident. Florida has a No-Fault law and a Financial Responsibility law that outlines auto insurance coverage provisions. You must follow these guidelines closely to ensure you are operating your vehicle legally.
Florida's Minimum Requirements on Auto Insurance
Florida law accommodates residents with several ways to establish financial responsibility:
- Purchase an auto insurance liability policy from an authorized provider
- Obtain a Financial Responsibility Certificate after posting a surety bond with a company that is licensed by the state. Certificates are issued through Florida’s Bureau of Financial Responsibility.
- Make a cash deposit with the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FDHSMV) to receive a certificate from the Bureau.
- Become self-insured after proving you have the financial capital to cover expenses from an accident.
Purchasing an auto liability insurance policy is the most common way Florida residents establish financial responsibility. If you own a vehicle that is licensed in Florida, you must maintain liability insurance on the car. This is a requirement even if you do not drive the vehicle. The only way you can legally cancel your responsibility to maintain insurance is to return the license plate to either the tax collector or DMV office.
Florida’s No-Fault law has minimum coverage requirements for accidents that occur without physical injuries. Coverage amounts include:
- Personal injury protection (PIP) of $10,000 per person, per accident
- Property damage liability of $10,000 per accident
The Financial Responsibility law has minimum auto insurance coverage requirements for vehicle accidents where you are at-fault. The minimum coverage levels are:
- $10,000 per physical injury, per person
- $20,000 for physical injury of two or more people
- $10,000 property damage, per accident
- $30,000 single limit combinations
Both laws work together to ensure a certain amount of liability insurance is available for unexpected accidents.
You must also maintain proof that you are being financially responsible on Florida’s roads. Usually, your auto insurance provider sends information to the FDHSMV regarding your insurance coverage. Human error is not unlikely; therefore, it is best to keep a hard copy of proof that you have insurance. Typically, the insurance provider will give you an identification card to keep in your vehicle.
Every Florida driver can face penalties for failing to maintain financial responsibility. Your driving privileges are subject to suspension. Without proof of insurance, you also face suspension of your vehicle registration and state issued license plate. Unless you provide proof, these items can remain suspended for up to three years. A reinstatement fee between $150 and $500 is also required.
Consumer Car Licensing Information in Florida
Florida offers a Class E consumer license for drivers with passenger cars and pickup trucks. If you have moved to Florida from another state, you can receive a Florida license by paying a $48 fee. Florida usually waives the requirement to take a written test and road test. You will need to provide:
- Your social security card
- A primary ID such as a passport
- A secondary ID, which can be the out-of-state license
First-time adult drivers must complete a Traffic Law and Substance Abuse course. If you are a first-time driver and need to take the written test, you will need to:
- Also take a hearing and vision test
- Show proof that you completed the substance abuse course
- Provide proof of Florida residency
- Provide a primary and secondary identification
- Have a social security card
Appointments are required to take the driving test for a driver’s license.
Motorcycle Licensing Information in Florida
Florida may seem like the ideal place throughout the year for motorcycle enthusiasts. However, it is important to receive legal authorization to operate a motorcycle in the state. You can either have a motorcycle endorsement added to your license for $7 or receive a motorcycle-only license.
To receive a motorcycle endorsement, you must be at least 16, have a Class E driver’s license and complete the Basic Rider course. Additionally, you are required to take a hearing and vision test, complete a written examination, and pass a motorcycle driving test. Receiving a motorcycle-only license involves passing the same tests for an endorsement.
Helmets are required while driving a motorcycle in Florida unless you are 21 years old and have a $10,000 minimum medical policy. All motorcycle drivers, regardless of age, must either have protective eye wear or the bike must have a windshield.
As a new resident with a current motorcycle endorsement from a different state, you are not required to fulfill Florida’s requirements. The exception is if you are over 21 and have not completed a safety course.
Military applicants who are stationed outside Florida may receive a motorcycle endorsement by completing a military sponsored motorcycle safety course. Documentation of completion and a $32 fee should be sent to the Division of Driver Licenses (DLL).
Commercial Vehicle Licensing Information in Florida
Florida issues a commercial driver’s license (CDL) when drivers pass a two-part series of tests and submit the following:
- Proof of residency
- A valid social security number
- Two forms of ID
- Proof of medical eligibility with an examination report
You must be at least 18 years old and pass all required tests for a CDL. Licenses are issued based on different CDL classes. Generally, Florida has three categories for a commercial license.
- Class A is for trucks or combinations that have a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) over 26,000 lbs.
- Class B is for trucks with a GVWR greater than 26,000 lbs.
- Class C is issued for vehicles that transport hazardous materials, groups of more than 15 people and have a GVWR of 26,000 lbs. or less.
You might need endorsements added to the CDL based on the type of commercial vehicle you drive. Florida has six different endorsements for CDL drivers.
Fees for a CDL are:
- $75 for the initial CDL and renewals
- $48 for initial license and renewal for school bus drivers
- $7 per endorsement
- $10 for a re-examination of the written test
- $20 for a re-examination of the driving test
More Resources on Auto Insurance in Florida
Department of Insurance
- 200 East Gaines Street, Tallahassee, FL 32399
- Phone: (850) 413-3140