Ohio Car Insurance

Ohio’s highways run like veins across the midwest. Although good for commerce, the heavy traffic crossing this state has also increased the accident rate. Urban freeways in the major cities of Dayton, Cincinnati and Toledo average 80-100 accidents per mile every year. If you’re an Ohio resident, be sure to buy adequate car insurance for coverage when you need it most.




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Stats in Your State

Driving a car in Ohio is practically a necessity for getting around. The flat topography lends itself to urban sprawl while vast road systems have turned Ohio into a fast-track for truckers headed cross-country. If you’re a self-proclaimed Buckeye, do yourself a favor and invest in car insurance.

Auto Insurance Premiums

Car insurance premiums in Ohio are noteworthy in the best way: look at the graph below and you’ll see a large, steady gap between Ohio premiums and nationwide costs. Drivers in this state are consistently paying $100 less than their fellow Americans and there’s no sign of that trend changing anytime soon.

Traffic Fatalities over time

Despite heavily used highways and an influx of semi-trucks, Ohio’s roads are becoming safer. This trend is partly due to advances in airbag technology and car design, but also in part due to improvements in roadways. As noted in the graph, deaths have steadily decreased from a high in 1999 of 1,430 deaths to rates just above 1,000 in 2009 and 2011.

Auto Repair Costs

Along with reduced car insurance premiums, Buckeyes are also saving a pretty penny on auto repairs. In 2010 and 2011, prices were 17% and 9% lower, respectively, than the national average. Drivers in the heartland can further take advantage of these affordable rates by comparing insurers and auto shops for the best deals.

Rules in Your State

A solid handle on the rules and regulations in Ohio means a better chance of avoiding tickets. While many road warriors haven’t taken a peek at these rules since driver’s education, a quick refresh is laid out simply and informatively below.

Ohio Car Insurance Requirements

As of December, 2013, Bodily Injury Liability coverage minimums were: $25,00 per person or $50,000 max for all persons injured in an accident.

Property Damage Liability Coverage: $25,000 for property of others

Ohio Licensing Facts for Teen Drivers: The Graduated Driver License

Hardship License for Minors? Yes.

  • The minor (ages 14 or 15) must be the only licensed driver in the household.
  • License is valid only within a 10-mile radius of the home.
  • License is only for obtaining household necessities, driving the disabled parent or guardian to medical appointments, or emergencies.
  • The minor must live in an area where there is no public transportation.
  • The minor must complete a driver education course and the graduated licensing requirements.

To apply, send a letter to:

Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles

P.O. Box 16784

Attention Driver License Special Case Division/Medical Unit

Columbus, Ohio 43216

Include an explanation of the hardship and provide the minor’s full name, date of birth, social security number and the names, dates of birth and social security numbers of any licensed drivers in the household. The BMV must also receive a notarized statement proving other drivers would surrender their licenses if a hardship license were to be issued.

Learner’s Permit Age: 15 years, 6 months.

  • Learners must log 50 hours of driving and hold permit for six months if under 18 years.
  • Learners must be accompanied by parents with a license or a driver’s education instructor while driving.
  • Drivers over 16 with a learner’s permit may drive with anyone over the age of 21 with a valid license.
  • Drivers under 18 must complete driver’s education.

Restricted License Age: 16 years.

  • Drivers under 17 with a learner’s permit or driver license cannot drive between midnight and 6 a.m.
  • Drivers under 17 may only have one non-family member under the age of 21 in the vehicle.

Full License (Unrestricted) Age: 18 years.

Distracted Driving

  • Text messaging is prohibited while driving.
  • Wearing a headset is not permitted while driving – check to see if your hands-free device is permitted.
  • Using a hand-held cell phone is prohibited in Beachwood, Brooklyn, North Olmsted, North Royalton, South Euclid, and Walton Hills.


Drinking and driving endangers yourself and others, not to mention it’s against the law. If those reasons aren’t compelling enough, here are some of the legal consequences for Ohio drivers.

Administrative license suspension 1st offense? 91 days
Restore driving privileges during suspension? After 15 days
Are ignition interlocks mandatory for first offenders for the following offenses? No
Are ignition interlocks mandatory for repeat offenders for the following offenses? no
Fine for first offense? $250-$1,000
Jail sentence for first offense? 3 days minimum up to 6 months

Representatives & Resources in Your State

Whether you have car insurance already or you’re looking for your next provider, it always pays to know the right place to go for trustworthy information and relevant resources. The Simple Dollar has compiled a list of departments and resources to reference when registering, licensing, or insuring your vehicle.

Ohio Department of Transportation
1980 West Broad Street
Columbus, OH 43223
Get Directions
(614) 466-7170

Ohio Department of Insurance
50 W. Town Street
Third Floor – Suite 300
Columbus, Ohio 43215
Get Directions
File a complaint

Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV)
1970 W. Broad Street
Columbus, OH 43218-2081
Get Directions
(614) 752-7500

Ohio State Patrol
P.O. Box 182074
Columbus, OH 43223
(877) 7-PATROL

Office of Governor’s Highway Safety
Department of Public Safety
1970 W Broad St
Columbus, OH 43218-2081
Get Directions
(614) 466-3250