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Finding cheap car insurance in Rhode Island is far more challenging than most people realize because there are dozens of factors that affect your monthly premiums. Each insurance company has a different formula for calculating monthly rates. The secret to finding the best deal is to identify the company that caters to your particular driver profile. Our researchers handled the heavy lifting for you by evaluating car insurance quotes from some of the top providers in The Ocean State.
Cheapest Car Insurance Companies in Rhode Island
To secure the most affordable car insurance rates in Rhode Island, it’s important that you compare premiums from several different carriers. Below, you can find the results of our Geeks’ comparison study:
|Cheapest Insurer||Driver Category|
|Liberty Mutual||Safe Drivers|
|USAA||Drivers in the Military|
|Esurance||Drivers Who Pay Their Premiums Upfront|
Best Car Insurance Companies in Rhode Island
Analyzing reviews and complaint data, we were able to rank Rhode Island’s car insurance companies and identify the best of the best. Take a look at the results of our study below:
Minimum Car Insurance Requirements in Rhode Island
In the state of Rhode Island, drivers must carry car insurance that meets the following limits:
- $25,000 Per Person / $50,000 Per Accident
- $25,000 For Damage To Property
- $25,000 Per Person / $50,000 Per Accident For Bodily Injuries Caused By An Uninsured Motorist (only required if your bodily injury coverage is higher than the minimum limits)
Penalties for Driving Without Auto Insurance in Rhode Island
After a surge in road deaths, Rhode Island lawmakers have cracked down on errant motorists in recent years. As part of their war on the area’s tar-bound bandits, authorities have paid special attention to those taking chances by driving without insurance.
The First Offense
While Rhode Island does not keep a statewide electronic database like many other states, its traffic officers regularly set up checkpoints and pull over suspicious drivers. If, when you are pulled over by traffic officers, you are no able to present proof that you possess insurance, you will be fined between $100 and $500.
Authorities will also suspend your registration and license. Take note: unlike some other states, you will not be able to reinstate either your license or registration until the three-month period has elapsed.
Second and Subsequent Offenses
Serial offenders are taking big risks. The state’s tame punishment for a first offense is nothing compared to penalties lying in wait for pathological lawbreakers.
If you are caught a second time, authorities will suspend your license and registration for six months, you will be fined $500 and you will have to fork out almost $600 in fees to reinstate both documents.
If, after that, you still haven’t learned you lesson, your license and registration will be suspended for a full year and you will be $1,000 poorer. Stick to gambling in a casino.
Rhode Island Car Insurance FAQs
Can I File a Claim If I Was Partially At-Fault for the Crash?
Rhode Island employs a fault-based insurance system, which means that drivers are not required to carry no-fault auto insurance. However, there are no-fault policies available that cover certain types of damages no matter who was at fault for a crash. If you have one of these policies, you can file a claim against your own insurance company.
What Are Some Helpful Tips for Filing an Auto Insurance Claim?
1. Prepare for Anything
It’s time to channel the enthusiasm you could never muster when your math teacher set you extra homework back in the 11th grade. Overachievers reign supreme in the world of claims and settlements.
Remember this: too much evidence is a fairytale. Collect as much documentation as you can such as photographs from the scene of the crash, lists of property damage and repair costs, medical-related expenses and doctor’s assessments, and your own copy of the police’s official report on the crash.
2. Understand Your Case
The insurer will be looking at your case to figure out whether you were to blame for the crash, whether the amount of money you are asking for is justifiable, and whether the documentation provided adequately supports your case. Once you understand the claims process, you will be better able to build a rock-solid case.
3. Be Willing to Negotiate
If you feel your insurer has offered you an unfair settlement, do not hesitate to negotiate for a better payout. The success of your settlement negotiations will ultimately hinge on the evidence you have gathered to support your claim.
4. Call Early and Often
Your first call after a crash should be to the police. Your second should go straight through to the insurer. Why? It’s simple. From the moment you smack into another driver, or vice versa, evidence is already fading. Procrastinate and the evidence that shows you were not at fault may disappear.
Once your claim is filed with your insurer, don’t just sit back and relax. Following up with agents at your insurance company takes just a few minutes and will help clear up any confusion surrounding the process.
Who Is Covered by My Car Insurance in Rhode Island?
In most cases, any licensed drivers residing in your household will be covered to operate your vehicle. Plus, most policies also cover any licensed individual who you have given permission to make use of your car.
What Car Insurance Terminology Should I Know Before Getting a Policy?
Don’t let jargon trip you up when purchasing a policy. This glossary of common auto insurance terminology will help you understand the ins and outs of coverage in Rhode Island:
Collision Coverage: This is a popular add-on to your basic policy. Essentially, this feature protects you from financial loss when you crash into another vehicle or object. Whether you crashed into a wall, another motorist, lost your exhaust after an encounter with a pothole, or rolled your car, collision coverage can kick in to compensate you for the repair costs.
Declarations Page: The first page of your printed auto insurance document will provide you with a comprehensive summary of all the important details of your policy. This can include specifics such as your personal details, the model and make of your car, the amount of coverage, additional features, your annual or monthly premium, and more. We recommend keeping a copy of your declarations page stashed in your glove compartment in case of a crash.
Deductible: Settling on the right deductible is a balancing act few have mastered. This part of your policy or individual feature represents the exact amount you will have to pay to cover repairs or costs of treating injuries before you’re able to dip into your coverage. A low deductible will drive up your rates but will give you peace of mind that your next serious accident won’t break the bank. A high deductible can help you reduce your premium but may leave you cash strapped in the event of a crash.
Tort State: Rhode Island is a tort state, which means that the driver responsible for causing the accident can be held liable for damages sustained by the other parties involved. When determining blame in a crash, your insurer will look at evidence such as your version of events, the official police accident report, and witness statements. The adjuster will conclude, down to a percentage point, how responsible you were for the crash taking place. For example, if your insurer decides that you are only 30% at-fault, you can now claim up to 70% of your damages – based on the details and features of your policy – against your coverage.
Rate: The monthly or annual premium associated with carrying a policy is referred to as a rate. Your rate is often unique to you and your situation as insurers will calculate your premium based on a variety of personal factors such as your age, marital status, education, driving record, occupation, make and model of your vehicle, and other factors. If you were convicted for driving under the influence, caused a serious accident, or caught committing multiple traffic violations over a short period of time, you will often be labelled a high-risk motorist and will have to pay increased rates.
SR-22 Insurance: Technically, SR-22 Insurance isn’t a type of coverage; it’s a legal requirement that will increase the cost of your insurance. In cases where your license is suspended or revoked – for example, you may have been caught driving without insurance – you may be required to fulfill the SR-22 requirement with your local DMV. This involves filing a form for a predetermined period of time proving that you are insured up to the state-mandated minimum. Many insurers offer to file these forms and help keep you good standing with the law. However, this type of insurance is more expensive than regular policies as you are now seen as a high-risk driver.
Third Party: This refers to anyone who isn’t you or your insurer and is listed on your insurance policy. Your policy may cover other drivers, such as family members, when they are driving or traveling as passengers in your insured vehicle.
What Are Some Important Traffic Laws in Rhode Island?
Get to grips with Rhode Island’s driving laws and penalties with this quick guide:
Texting and Driving Laws
Rhode Island’s authorities will penalize any driver caught reading, writing, or sending texts while operating a vehicle. If you are caught with your finger on the screen, you could be fined up to $100 and receive a one-month license suspension. Second-time offenders can be fined $150 and have their licenses suspended for up to 90 days. Serial risk takers will face dire consequences on their third or subsequent offense and may be subjected to up to $250 in fines and six-month license suspensions.
Child Car Seat Laws
During the early years of a child’s development, your little one is vulnerable to severe crash forces in an accident. Rhode Island’s traffic laws have shifted to ensure the state’s youngest passengers are kept safe on the road. As a result, children under the age of 8 years old, weighing less than 80 lbs, and measuring in at less than 57 inches tall must be restrained in a rear-facing child safety seat. Children over the age of 8 are required to wear seat belt.
Severe penalties await parents not taking the proper precautions when traveling with kids. If you are ticketed for failing to safely seat a child under the age of 8, you may be expected to appear in court.
Drunk Driving Laws
In a bid to reduce accident-related deaths, state authorities are clamping down on drunk drivers. As a motorist in Rhode Island, you are prohibited from getting behind the wheel with blood alcohol content levels equal to or exceeding 0.08%. If you are stopped by authorities and test over the legal limit, you could face the following penalties:
- Up to $300 in fines;
- License suspended for up to 180 days;
- Up to 1 year behind bars;
- Up to 60 hours of community service; and
- Compulsory attendance of an alcohol/drug treatment classes on Driving While Intoxicated.
While you can refuse to take an alcohol or drug test, this choice will result in an automatic fine and license suspension. You may also be forced to complete community service before your driving privileges are reinstated.
Rhode Island Car Accident Statistics
In 2017, 83 people were killed in accidents in Rhode Island, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. This marked a 63% increase over the previous year’s numbers.
According to the state Department of Health, Rhode Island’s fatality rate is lower than the national average. Young adults between the ages of 15 and 24 are among the most likely motorists to be involved car crashes.