D.C. Auto Insurance Guide
Whether you’re heading out to FedEx Field, driving down to Nationals Park,
crossing the Potomac, doing business on K Street, catching a concert at Kennedy
Center or touring the many monuments and museums in our nation’s capital,
Washington D.C. is filled with exciting things to see and do. Sightseeing or
is crucial to being a responsible Washington driver.
Auto Insurance Resources for D.C. Residents
While the resident population in our nation’s capital is around 650,000, millions of tourists visit Washington D.C. each year. That means
distracted people driving on unfamiliar roads. Many of them are uninsured, and many are from foreign countries. Add in heavy population
density packed into 61 square miles, stress and rush hour traffic. That’s a recipe for fender benders and a good reason to be sure you have
enough car insurance while driving inside The Beltway.
Washington D.C. Minimum Car Insurance
Laws in the District of Columbia require you to carry a minimum amount of car insurance or face severe penalties. Washington D.C. has a
no-fault system, meaning your insurance will pay your injury claims up to a specified limit, regardless of who caused the accident. Under a
no-fault system, you lose some of your rights to sue. Washington D.C. also requires that you carry Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage.
While Washington D.C. does not require you to carry additional personal liability or Collision and Comprehensive, if you own property or
other valuable assets, you would be wise to supplement the minimum requires shown below:
- $25,000 bodily injury per person per accident
- $50,000 bodily injury for all persons per accident
- $10,000 property damage liability
- $25,000/$50,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury
- $5,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist property damage subject to $200 deductible
Washington D.C. Car Insurance Laws
If you are driving in our nation’s capital, you are required to carry proof of active Washington D.C. auto insurance in your vehicle
and produce it if a law enforcement officer asks to see it. Fail to carry adequate D.C. auto insurance and the Metropolitan Police
Department can ticket you for a $30 civil fine. Note that this law applies regardless of where your car is registered or where your driver’s
license was issued. Failure to maintain valid car insurance on a vehicle registered in Washington D.C. will result in suspension of your
registration tags and reciprocity sticker. You may also be assessed with a fine of $150 dollars per day during the first 30 days that you
have a lapse in insurance, and $7 for each additional day you remain uninsured after the first 30 days, up to a maximum fine of $2,500.
Regulating Agency and References
District of Columbia Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking
This is agency is responsible for regulating vehicle insurance policies sold in Washington D.C. For more information, visit their website at
District of Columbia Department of Motor Vehicles
This is the agency responsible for licensing drivers and registering vehicles. You can learn more about Washington D.C. auto insurance
requirements, penalties and related information at
National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC)
This is an organization of insurance regulators from the 50 states, District of Columbia and the five U.S. territories. NAIC
provides a forum for the development of uniform policies when appropriate. NAIC members are elected or appointed state government
officials who regulate the conduct of insurance companies and agents in their respective states or territories.
Visit NAIC at www.naic.org
Insurance Information Institute (III)
This organization’s mission is to improve public understanding of insurance – what it is and how it works. Visit III at
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Last Updated: 12/21/2010