Drivers must show that they are responsible in order to operate vehicles in most states. Mississippi is not an exception. Residents don't have many ways to establish financial responsibility in the state. In some places, people can file surety bonds or use self-insurance under certain circumstances. That's not how it works in Mississippi, where liability insurance is the only option for driving legally. Before collecting quotes, drivers should educate themselves about the state's minimum car insurance requirements. That information is a good start, but additional research should be performed for optimal results.
In many instances, drivers assume that getting the most basic auto insurance policies is perfectly fine. That's not true. There are many situations in which more extensive coverage is warranted. Looking at driving statistics in the state is a good way to understand the importance of excellent coverage. After all, there are millions of people on the road. Safe drivers can and do find themselves involved in accidents all the time. Those who stick with the most minimum requirements often find themselves owing more money or facing additional problems. Therefore, it's crucial to be discerning when buying auto insurance in the Hospitality State.
Who Drives in Mississippi?
The United States Census Bureau estimates that the population of Mississippi in 2012 was 2,984,926. Driving statistics for Mississippi and all of the other states are maintained by the Federal Highway Administration, which reports that there were 1,926,603 licensed drivers in the state as of November 2012. Therefore, 64.6 percent of all Mississippians are legally able to take to the road at any time. 1,007,017 people, or 52.27 percent of all licensed drivers, were women while 919,586 people, or 47.73 percent of all licensed drivers, were men.
Drivers in the state of Mississippi are fairly evenly split in terms of gender. When it comes to calculating insurance rates, however, gender can't even come into play. Age certainly does, though, and younger drivers tend to pay much higher rates. As of November 2012, there were 61,147 drivers aged 19 and below in the state of Mississippi, which equals 3.2 percent of all licensed drivers. There are plenty of older drivers in the state too, and 88,652 people, or 4.6 percent of all licensed drivers, falling into the 50-to-54 age range.
Auto Insurance Requirements in Mississippi
Pleading ignorance of the state's minimum insurance requirements won't get a driver anywhere in Mississippi. Therefore, all drivers should find out the minimum requirements before shopping for insurance. Most insurance carriers who are licensed to sell coverage in the state are aware of the requirements, but drivers should have a basic grasp of them as well to avoid problems.
Some states permit drivers to make cash deposits or to file surety bonds to establish financial responsibility. In Mississippi, the only way to do so is by purchasing and maintaining valid liability insurance. Simply buying a random liability insurance policy isn't going to cut it. Drivers have to make sure that their policies meet the minimum requirements, which include:
- At least $25,000 in bodily injury coverage for one person
- At least $50,000 in bodily injury coverage per accident
- At least $25,000 in property damage coverage
Mississippi still doesn't have an electronic reporting system in place, and drivers aren't required to show proof of coverage in order to register or renew their vehicles. Still, they're not off the hook. When stopped for traffic violations, they must show officers proof of insurance.
Failing to show proof of insurance can result in various penalties. First offenders face fines of up to $1,000 and may also have their registrations suspended for up to one year. As long as they bring in proof of insurance, however, their suspensions should be lifted. More severe penalties are possible for subsequent offenses.
Car insurance is important no matter where a person lives. In Mississippi, it is required by law. By shopping around and collecting auto insurance quotes, Mississippi drivers can spend less and get a lot more, which will make it safer and easier to be on the road.