New York Car Insurance

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In a nutshell...
  • It’s illegal to drive in New York without car insurance
  • No-fault car insurance laws in New York are more expensive than in other states
  • State requirements are not enough to prevent personal liability

For drivers in the State of New York, car insurance laws and minimum auto insurance requirements are quite favorable compared to most states.

New York has both no-fault car insurance laws and higher than average minimum car insurance requirements.

While the minimum auto insurance requirements in New York are still not high enough to prevent all personal liability, they are sufficient to cover liability for most minor accidents.

Car insurance is mandatory for all vehicles registered in New York and do not expect to get registration tags without proof of insurance.

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New York Car Insurance Requirements

All vehicles registered in New York must maintain car insurance which meets or exceed minimum levels of coverage as set by the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles.

The current (2010) minimum auto insurance requirements are:

  • $25,000/$50,000 liability per accident
  • $50,000 / $100,000 liability for accidents resulting in a death
  • $10,000 property damage insurance per accident

These liability requirements do not apply to motorcycles so check with the New York DMV about registration requirements for owning a motorcycle.

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Is New York a no-fault car insurance state?

Yes. New York operates under the no-fault set of car insurance laws so the odds of you getting sued for minor accidents are far lower than in states like Massachusetts or Rhode Island.

While no-fault car insurance laws do not prevent all exposure from litigation, it certainly does help provide quicker claims handling the process, lower car insurance premiums and much lower exposure to personal liability.

What are the penalties for driving with no car insurance in New York State?

Driving with no car insurance in the State of New York is illegal, and one law enforcement officials take very seriously.

Any driver operating a vehicle with no car insurance in New York can be subject to substantial penalties including drivers licenses suspension and substantial monetary fines.

What a lot of drivers do not realize is that whenever a car insurance policy lapses, car insurance companies are required by law to report the error to the New York DMV.

The Department of Motor Vehicles will then send you a notice requiring proof of insurance to be mailed in along with a civil penalty, which accumulates pretty quick depending on exactly how many days policy has lapsed.

Any lapse more significant than 90 days and the State required your vehicle license plates to be turned in.

What are the penalties for having car insurance lapse in New York?

Penalties for any lapse in insurance coverage will be billed by the New York Department of Motor Vehicles.

Currently, the fines for drivers reported to have a lapse in car insurance coverage are:

  • Policy lapse less than 30 days $8 per day
  • Policy lapse between 31 and 60 Days $10 per day
  • Policy lapse between 61 and 90 Days  $12 per day

So let’s assume your car insurance coverage lapsed 65 days ago – your total fine would be approximately $610 – probably higher than most drivers car insurance premiums!

While New York car insurance rates are higher than the national average, they are still quite affordable for most consumers.

What you never want to do is personal risk liability when operating a vehicle, so try and secure coverage with both sufficient levels of coverage and affordable car insurance premiums.

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