Florida Car Insurance

Whether your commute takes you through cities, wetlands, the beach, or across some wide open stretches of Sunshine State highway, you know the importance of a good car insurance policy. To help Florida drivers nail down the essentials of auto insurance, The Simple Dollar has found the information surrounding auto insurance, driving, and licensing in the state of Florida.

 

 

 

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Stats in Your State

To help readers better understand how their car insurance premiums stack up against those of the average Florida driver, we’ve compiled some need to know data that illustrates the average cost of Florida auto insurance premiums over several years. Influencing the cost of insurance are many factors, but chief among them are traffic accidents. To this end, we’ve also provided data on traffic fatalities in Florida from 2005 to 2011.

Auto Insurance Premiums

The average yearly car insurance premium in Florida remains well above the national average, in a range of roughly 15% to over 35% higher. While factors such as age and income affect premiums, Florida’s high incidence of natural disasters due to storms doubtlessly contributes to higher rates in the Sunshine State.

Traffic Fatalities over time

In the six years between 2005 and 2011, traffic fatalities in Florida have dropped steadily each year. Improvements in crash technology, cell-phone awareness, and teen driver safety have lessened the number of traffic fatalities nationwide in recent years.

Auto Repair Costs

Florida’s warm weather, flat roads, and relatively new infrastructure make it an easy place to drive and a relatively inexpensive place to own (and fix) a car. In 2010, the average automobile owner in Florida paid $352.98 for repair costs, roughly $3 less than the average U.S. driver. The following year, repair rates in Florida were about $7 cheaper than the national average.

Rules in Your State

Staying informed on your state’s regulations will keep you well within your rights as a driver and empowered to know when someone is infringing on them. To that end, we’ve compiled the basics of DUI offenses, the essentials of licensing for new drivers, and the car insurance coverages required by state law.

Florida Car Insurance Minimum Requirements

Source: Florida Administrative Register and Code
Liability auto insurance minimum limits:

  • $10,000 of bodily injury or death to another person in any one accident
  • $20,000 of bodily injuries or death of two or more people in a single accident
  • $10,000 of injury to or destruction of property of others in a single accident

Also, under Florida’s No-Fault Insurance Law, drivers must carry:

  • $10,000 of personal injury protection (PIP), also known as Florida No Fault Insurance
  • $10,000 of property damage liability (PDL)

Florida Required Proof of Insurance

Your card should include the following:

  • Name of insurance company
  • Insurance policy number
  • Effective date/expiration date of policy
  • Accurate description of year, make/model of registered vehicle
  • Name of insured driver

Florida Licensing Facts for Teen Drivers: The Graduated Driver License

Hardship License for Minors?
No.

Learner’s Permit Age:
Once Floridian teens become 15, they are eligible for a learner’s permit. This permit must be held for one year. Like many other states, there is a requirement on the number of hours that must be logged. In Florida, teens must have 50 practice hours logged, 10 of which must be at night.

Restricted License Age:
After the learner’s permit comes the restricted license. Here are the facts:

  • The driver must be 16 years old and unless the restricted license holder has a 21+ licensed passenger in the vehicle, they are prohibited from driving between the hours of 11pm-6am. Once the driver turns 17, these restricted hours are 1am-5am.
  • For both age groups, if the restricted license holder is driving to and from work, they are allowed to drive during the restricted hours without the 21 year old or older licensed passenger.

Full License (Unrestricted) Age:
18 years old.

Once the driver holds an unrestricted license, it is important to discuss car insurance options with your local insurance provider.

DUI/DWI Laws:

The Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles department clearly outlines the penalties associated with drinking and driving. It is a serious offense that endangers yourself as well as other drivers on the road.

Administrative license suspension 1st offense? 6 months - 9 months, depending on BAC
Restore driving privileges during suspension? Restricted driving privileges considered after 30 days if hardship is demonstrated.
Are ignition interlocks mandatory for first offenders for the following offenses? High-BAC offenders only.
Are ignition interlocks mandatory for repeat offenders for the following offenses? yes
Fine for first offense? $500 to $1000
Jail sentence for first offense? Up to 6 months; with BAL of .15 or higher or minor in the vehicle: up to 9 months.

Representatives & Resources in Your State

Being informed about your rights is the first step to recovering after a loss or a claim. In case of a dispute, a concern about your insurer or your rights, or to make a formal complaint against your insurer, the following resources will guide you in the right direction.

Florida Office of Insurance Regulation (FLOIR)
200 East Gaines Street
Tallahassee, FL 32399
(850) 413-3140
Get Directions

Florida Department of Financial Services
Division of Consumer Services
200 East Gaines Street
Tallahassee, FL 32399-0322
Get Directions

Auto Insurance Consumer Guide
Florida Department of Financial Services Consumer Guides
This compilation of guides serves as a general resource for information on auto insurance, life insurance, health insurance, natural disasters, claims,and other info relevant to Florida insurance policyholders.