Regardless of where people drive, they should do so as safely as possible at all times. Despite people's best efforts, however, accidents still happen. It's one of the many reasons that everyone should have car insurance. The state of Pennsylvania recognizes the importance of this type of coverage and requires all drivers to maintain it. Indeed, it is against the law to operate a vehicle in Pennsylvania without valid auto liability insurance. Most residents are aware of the law and make a point of buying coverage that meets and/or exceeds the state's minimum requirements.
While Pennsylvania requires all drivers to maintain valid car insurance, the minimums that are in place are often not enough. It's easy for a driver to end up with a bill that far exceeds the limits of such a policy, which is why so many drivers choose to buy more extensive coverage. Liability coverage is required, but many people opt for comprehensive coverage as well. There are also people who aren't convinced about the importance of having high-quality insurance. Those folks should consider driving statistics for the Keystone State to find out why they should place a priority on procuring top-notch coverage.
Who Drives in Pennsylvania?
An excellent way to understand why it pays to have great car insurance in Pennsylvania is by understanding who is typically on the road there. According to the United States Census Bureau, the estimated population of Pennsylvania in 2012 was 12,763,536. They don't all drive, of course, and the Federal Highway Administrationkeeps track of those types of statistics. That agency reports that there were 8,796,774 licensed drivers in the state as of November 2012, which means that 68.9 percent of the population is legally able to drive.
The FHA provides many additional statistics as well. For example, 4,367,606 people, or 49.65 percent of licensed drivers, are men. 4,429,168 people, or 50.35 percent of licensed drivers, are women. Insurance companies are not supposed to consider gender when calculating premiums because there's no evidence that it plays a role in how safe a driver will be on the road. Age does come into play, though, and younger drivers pay more for insurance. There were 167,586 drivers aged 19 or below, which equals 1.9 percent of all drivers. 451,616 people, or 5.1 percent of all licensed drivers, are in the 50-to-54 age group. They have more experience in general, so they usually have lower premiums.
Car Insurance Requirements in Pennsylvania
All drivers in the Keystone State must be able to prove that they have the means to pay for damages or injuries due to car accidents. There are two ways to show proof of financial responsibility: liability car insurance or self-insurance. The vast majority of Pennsylvania drivers opt for the former. In order to get self-insurance, a driver must submit an application and make a deposit in the amount of $50,000 for the first vehicle. Each additional vehicle costs $10,000.
The state's minimum car insurance requirements are:
- At least $15,000 in bodily injury coverage for one person
- At least $30,000 in bodily injury coverage for two or more people
- At least $5,000 in property damage coverage
These minimums are quite low. Many people opt for more extensive coverage to avoid complications. Those who are concerned about price can collect auto insurance quotes for the state of Pennsylvania. Shopping around is a great way to get a terrific deal.
There are penalties for driving without car insurance in the Keystone State. Although insurance carriers don't report to the DMV, drivers can be caught when they are stopped for moving violations or following accidents. As long as a person immediately turns in his plates, he won't face any penalties.
Those who are caught driving without coverage in Pennsylvania face fines of up to $300. Their licenses and registrations are typically suspended for three months. The reinstatement fee for driver's licenses and vehicle registrations is $50, so it's necessary to pay another $100 to get street legal again.