Texas Car Insurance

The open stretches of highway across the Lone Star State require a steady vigilance at the wheel, and a good insurance policy to back that vigilance up in case the Texan in the next lane is texting. But just because everything in Texas is big, it doesn’t mean your insurance premium has to be. The Simple Dollar has compiled the essential facts, data, regulations and resources for Texans to stay informed about their car insurance policy and their rights as a consumer.

 

 

 

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Stats in Your State

To better understand how your insurance premiums compare to those in neighboring states, review the following charts and statistics, which compare Texas and four other states in the Southwest, along with the U.S. average.

Auto Insurance Premiums

Texas auto insurance premiums have danced with the U.S. average over the mid-2000’s, remaining within a few dollars of the national average for every year up until 2008.

Traffic Fatalities over time

Much like the U.S. as a whole, Texas traffic fatalities took a downward turn between 2005 and 2011, reaching a decade low in 2011 at just over 3,000.

Auto Repair Costs

Texas is home to a large blue-collar workforce that helps keep the cost of labor low for expenses such as auto repairs. In 2010, the average Texas car owner paid $347.25 in repairs, which was nearly $10 less than the national average. The following year, these numbers were much closer; Texas repairs stood at $333.75, only 18 cents below the U.S. rates.

Rules in Your State

Without knowing your state’s regulations when it comes to auto insurance, DUIs, and new driver restrictions, you could be driving at risk each mile you’re behind the wheel.To change this, The Simple Dollar has simplified things, putting all this info in one easy place.

Texas Auto Insurance Minimum Requirements

Source: Texas Department of Insurance
Liability auto insurance minimum requirements:

  • $30,000 of bodily injury to another person
  • $60,000 of bodily injuries to all other persons
  • $25,000 of injury to or destruction of property of others in any one accident

Texas Required Proof of Insurance

You must have a card issued by your insurer with the following information:

  • Name of Insurance Company
  • Insurance Policy Number
  • Effective Date/Expiration Date of policy
  • Name and address of Insured Driver
  • Description of all vehicles insured by the policy

Texas Department of Insurance Consumer Bill of Rights
The Texas Consumer Bill of Rights applicable to auto insurance policies is a great resource for consumers who want to better understand their relationship with their auto insurer, their rights, and their insurer’s obligations to them.

Texas Licensing Facts for Teen Drivers:The Graduated Driver License

Hardship License for Minors?
Yes.

Texas drivers must obtain a DL77 Form from the Texas Department of Transportation in order to apply for a hardship license. Hardship licenses may be granted in some states to minors who are under the age of 16, but for specific reasons must drive a vehicle to support their family or perform essential family functions. For instance, if their parent is disabled, a teen driver under the age of 16 may qualify to drive to and from the grocery store.

Learner’s Permit Age:
15 years.

Learner’s must complete the classroom portion of driver training to receive a permit. Permit holders must be with someone age 21 while driving, also must be held for six months and learner must reach age 16 to get restricted license.

Restricted License Age:
16 years. Drivers with a restricted license may drive with no more than one other person until the TRC 545.424 expires, may not drive from 1 a.m. to 5 a.m., and cannot use a cell phone while driving for the first six months. As of March 1, 2010, anyone age 18 through 24 must complete an approved driver education course and driving skills test to become licensed in the state of Texas in accordance with Texas Senate Bill 1317. Provisions of this law only apply to first-time Texas drivers license applicants.

Full License (Unrestricted) Age:
17 years.

DUI/DWI Laws:

The Texas Department of Transportation has established strict drinking and driving laws that can affect your ability to find affordable car insurance. Beyond being illegal and a financial burden, drinking and driving is a danger to the you and others on the road.

Administrative license suspension 1st offense? 90 days to 1 year
Restore driving privileges during suspension? Restricted driving privileges considered 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? Up to $2,000; Annual fee of $1,000 or $2,000 for 3 years to retain driver’s license
Jail sentence for first offense? 3 days to 6 months

Representatives & Resources in Your State

The Texas Department of Insurance acts as a strong consumer advocacy and regulatory group, facilitating consumer feedback and action, while keeping insurers in check. To learn more about the ins and outs of auto insurance in your state, contact the resources below or browse their websites for more information on the topic.

Texas Department of Insurance Ombudsman
P.O. Box 149104
Austin, Texas 78714-9104
[Phone] 512-475-1776
[Fax] 512-475-2025

Texas Department of Insurance
333 Guadalupe
Austin, TX 78701
Get Directions
512-463-6169
1- 800-252-3439
Consumer Resources
TDI Contact Information

Texas Department of Motor Vehicles
Texas Department of Motor Vehicles
4000 Jackson Ave.
Austin, TX 78731
Get Directions
1-888-DMVGOTX

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