Auto Insurance in Kentucky (KY)

If You Are Paying More Than $1,289.50 on Auto Insurance in Kentucky, You Are Paying Too Much.

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Auto Insurance Industry in Kentucky

  • An average consumer pays $1,703.00 on auto insurance
  • 143 of every 100,000 vehicles are reported stolen every year
  • Accident fatality rate of 1.67%
  • Of all accidents: 70% are road-way accidents, 14% are intersection accidents, and 13% of all accidents involve at least 1 truck.

Kentucky is the Bluegrass State known for breeding horses and hosting the Kentucky Derby. Although people travel from around the world to enjoy horse races, no one is eager to return to the horse and buggy days. Instead, residents of Kentucky enjoy the modern amenity of driving motorized vehicles on Kentucky roads and highways. To help ensure most residents can continue to enjoy driving privileges, Kentucky has implemented minimum auto liability insurance requirements and licensing procedures.

Kentucky's Minimum Requirements on Auto Insurance

Kentucky residents who wish to register and drive vehicles on roads and highways must obtain auto liability insurance. Doing so demonstrates financial responsibility to pay for damages after a vehicle accident. Establishing financial responsibility requires purchasing a policy that is based on Kentucky’s minimum requirements. Generally, policies are available from insurance providers that are authorized to sell insurance in the state.

Drivers who operate passenger vehicles on Kentucky roads must purchase auto liability and no-fault personal injury insurance. Generally, auto liability insurance covers monetary expenses for physical harm and property damage to another person when you are in a car accident. The minimum per accident requirements on auto liability insurance in Kentucky are:

  • $25,000 for physical injury per person
  • $50,000 for all physical injuries
  • $10,000 for property damage

No-fault personal injury insurance provides coverage regardless to whom caused the accident. In Kentucky, $10,000 is the minimum amount that you must carry on your registered vehicle. This amount covers monetary expenses that may accrue from medical bills or lost wages.

Electronic reporting is maintained through the Kentucky Office of Insurance (KOI) and Department of Motor Vehicle Regulation (DMVR). Insurance providers must report auto insurance information on every resident who purchases a policy. Unlike the electronic reporting systems in other states, Kentucky does not keep track of renewals and cancellations.

An advantage of the electronic reporting system is to ensure Kentucky has insurance information about drivers in the state. This information is available for DMV representatives when you need to renew your vehicle registration.

A disadvantage is the information may not be up-to-date with recent cancellations or non-renewals. Therefore, you will need to show proof of insurance whenever you need to renew your vehicle’s registration. Failing to maintain proof of financial responsibility will result in huge fines. You can also face cancellation of your vehicle registration and licensing.

Consumer Car Licensing Information in Kentucky

Generally, consumer car licensing in Kentucky involves receiving a Class D driver’s license. This license class grants driving privileges to operate vehicles with single motors. You may also drive trailers that weigh less than 26,000 lbs. These may include station wagons, SUVs or passenger vehicles that carry no more than 16 passengers.

The Circuit Court Clerk’s office issues driver’s licenses to Kentucky residents. Some offices may require an appointment to take the written test. Before taking the test, you will need to present:

  • A birth certificate
  • A social security card
  • Court documents that reflect name changes, if applicable.

You will receive a driving permit after you pass the written test. The permit is valid for one year. The next step is to take the driving test, which is performed through the Kentucky State Police. An appointment is required once you have kept the permit for 180 days. The driving test is not required if you are a new resident and have a valid out-of-state driver’s license.

Motorcycle Licensing Information in Kentucky

A Class M motorcycle-only license is available in Kentucky to drivers who are at least 18 years old. The application for a motorcycle-only license costs $24. If you have a valid driver’s license, you may receive a motorcycle endorsement. The cost is $30 for an endorsement.

There are two courses available in Kentucky that may not only help you develop motorcycle skills, but may also help you avoid certain testing requirements.

Completing an approved Motorcycle Safety Education (MSE) course is an opportunity to qualify for an on-road skills test waiver. This is a chance to demonstrate that you have mastered the skills and safety precautions that keep Kentucky roads safe.

The Motorcycle Rider Course covers 16-18 hours of basic motorcycle skills. Half of the time is spent with in-class instruction; the remaining time offers hands-on training. Another course is the Experienced Rider Course (ERC), which is geared toward riders with more driving experience. Hands-on training in the ERC may occur on an open riding range.

Commercial Vehicle Licensing Information in Kentucky

The state of Kentucky issues Class A, B or C commercial driver’s licenses (CDLs). To apply, you must:

  • Receive a medical certificate issued by the Department of Transportation (DOT)
  • Complete a CDL application that is available from the Circuit Court Clerk’s office
  • Pass a vision test
  • Pass a knowledge test that is administered in either a written or oral form

Once you pass the vision and knowledge tests, the Clerk’s office will issue a six month CDL instruction permit. The road skills test can be scheduled with the Kentucky State Police 10 days after you receive the permit.

The fees for a CDL are:

  • $24 - application
  • $11 - permit
  • Up to $40 for a CDL that is prorated based on the expiration date of your current license
  • Up to $40 for a CDL with a "S" endorsement for school bus drivers
  • $47 - renewal
  • $60 - to transfer a CDL from another state
  • $70 - for a CDL with a motorcycle endorsement

Additional testing is required for each endorsement that you may need. Kentucky offers CDL endorsements for drivers to operate a wide range of commercial vehicles. Typically, endorsements can be for vehicles that transport more than 16 passengers, tanks, double/triple trailers and haul hazardous materials.

More Resources on Auto Insurance in Kentucky

Department of Insurance

  • 215 West Main St, Frankfort, KY 40601
  • Phone: 502-564-3630
  • Toll Free (Kentucky only) : 800-595-6053