Tennessee Car Insurance

From Nashville to Memphis, and all the way east out to DollyWorld, the Volunteer State isn’t lacking popular destinations and roads to get there. With tourists flocking to Tennessee at all times of year, local drivers know the importance of maintaining a good car insurance policy. To help in this endeavor, The Simple Dollar has put together a one-stop place for readers to find what they need to understanding car insurance and the rules of Tennessee road. Read on to get a better understanding of how it all works.




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Stats in Your State

There are several factors affecting the price of car insurance in Tennessee, and we’ve put together the basic sets of data that illustrate how some of these factors work. Read on to get a better understanding of how Tennessee compares with the U.S. average for insurance rates, as well as in traffic fatalities and car repairs costs.

Auto Insurance Premiums

Across the 2000’s, Tennessee car insurance premiums have remained relatively steady and well below the U.S. average. Tennessee drivers paid more than $650 per year for only three years from 2000 to 2008, meanwhile the average U.S. driver paid less than $700 only once during that same time frame.

Traffic Fatalities over time

Following stricter safety standards for U.S. auto manufacturers and public safety awareness campaigns, traffic fatalities in Tennessee dropped from over 1,300 in 2004 to fewer than 1,000 in 2011. This trend mirrored a pattern across the U.S. of a similar rise followed by a drop in fatalities in the latter half of the decade.

Auto Repair Costs

Although Tennessee’s average car repair costs were well below the national average in 2010, the following year saw the price of fixing a vehicle just surpass the average, at roughly $335 per repair. While these statistics indicate the average cost per repair, they are affected by how many people decide to fix their car in any given year, and are an indirect indicator of the state's economic climate.

Rules in Your State

Staying safe behind the wheel isn’t just a matter of making sure you follow the speed limit and keep your eyes on the road: you also need to meet the state’s insurance requirements and stay aware of other laws. We’ve put together a list of relevant regulations for car insurance requirements, new driver licensing facts, and drunk driving penalties, so read further to get the lowdown on all of them.

Minimum Required Car Insurance in Tennessee.

  • $25,000 of bodily injury to another person
  • $50,000 of bodily injuries to all other persons
  • $15,000 of injury to or destruction of property of others in any one accident

Tennessee Licensing Facts for Teen Drivers

via the Tennessee government:

  • Hardship License for Minors? Yes. From age 14, teens may apply for a hardship license under special circumstances.
  • Learner’s Permit Age:  15 years. New drivers must log 50 practice hours and hold learner’s permit for 6 months before applying for a license.
  • Restricted License Age: 16 years. Drivers may not drive from 11:00 pm to 4:00 am, and may only have one passenger for their first year of driving, or until they turn age 18, whichever is sooner.
  • Full License (Unrestricted) Age: 17 years.

Additional Insurane Rules in Tennessee

Tennessee Code
Title 56  Insurance
Chapter 8  Unfair Competition and Unfair or Deceptive Practices
Part 1  Unfair Trade Practices and Unfair Claims Settlement Act of 2009
Tenn. Code Ann. § 56-8-104  (2013)
56-8-104.  Unfair trade practices defined.
56-8-105.  Unfair claims practice.

Readers can access the Tennessee code at the link above. The specific statutes that apply to insurance companies and policies across the board address unfair practices in both claims and trade practices. Look up those statutes for the specific actions that insurers are banned from taking when handling claims and doing business. If you feel your rights may have been violated or you were the victim of unfair practices, contact an attorney.


Driving under the influence puts you and others at risk; it's also against the law. Here are just some of the repercussions in Tennessee.

Administrative license suspension 1st offense? 1 year
Restore driving privileges during suspension? If hardship is demonstrated, driving privileges may be restored sooner.
Are ignition interlocks mandatory for first offenders for the following offenses? No
Are ignition interlocks mandatory for repeat offenders for the following offenses? yes
Fine for first offense? $350 to $1,500
Jail sentence for first offense? 48 hours to 1 year

Representatives & Resources in Your State

No one can be expected to handle all of their own insurance needs without any help, so we’ve listed a few of the most important state resources to help drivers when it comes to auto insurance and staying safe on the road. Use the links below to get in touch with your local government for assistance on difficult issues, guidance to learn more, or to just brush up on the current rules and regulations in Tennessee.

Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance
Insurance Division
500 James Robertson Parkway
Nashville, TN 37243
(615) 741-2218
Get Directions
Contact Information
Consumer Complaint Resource
Consumer Brochures and Information
The Insurance Division has published useful brochures to educate consumers and inform them about their options for different types of car insurance in Tennessee.

Tennessee Department of Transportation
TDOT Commissioner’s Office
James K. Polk Building, Suite 700
505 Deaderick Street
Nashville, TN 37243-0349
Get Directions
Contact Information
The Department of Transportation handles road updates, traffic safety, and general driving and commuting tips for Tennessee drivers.

Tennessee Department of Revenue: Vehicle Licenses and Registration
Drivers can fulfill their vehicle registration and licensing needs at the above link for the Department of Revenue, which handles vehicle services.

Department of Safety and Homeland Security: Driver Services & Licensing
The Department of Public Safety handles vehicle licensing services across the state. Contact them at this link to find an office near you.