California Auto Insurance Coverage


Whether you are already a resident of the state of California or you just relocated, you should make yourself aware of the mandatory auto insurance coverage required by the state. These amounts have been determined to adequately protect you, your family and others who drive on the streets and highways of California.

California has deemed it mandatory to require bodily injury and property damage coverage as part of your car insurance coverage. The bodily injury limits are the highest amount that your insurance company will pay out if you were to cause bodily harm to someone or even death from the effects of an accident. And the property damage limit is what your insurance company will pay for damages to that may have occurred to another person’s car or property from an accident that you may have caused.

Drivers who live in the state of California must carry a minimum of $15,000 coverage for bodily injury to one person in a single accident or $30,000 for injuries to two or more persons that were hurt in the accident. Property damage coverage limits are $5,000.

Keep in mind that these are just the minimums required by your state. You may want to increase your coverage to adequately protect yourself. Bodily injury limits range from the minimum of $15,000 per person to $250,000 per person. And property damage coverage ranges from $5,000 per incident to $100,000.

There are some exclusions to both of these coverages, which may apply to your coverage. You should check to see if your policy exempts the following conditions. Coverage may not apply for both bodily and property damage if you were using your vehicle to drive people or move property for a fee.

Coverage may also not apply if it has been deemed that the injuries or damages were caused intentionally. If you do not have the vehicle that was involved in the accident listed on your policy, you may not be covered.

And if the property in question is owned by or rented by an uninsured party, coverage may not apply. It is important to check these exclusions ahead of time so that you are not left without the proper coverage when you need it. 

If you drive on the streets and highways of California without the minimum insurance coverage your driver’s license will be suspended for up to one year. The registration for your vehicle will also be subject to cancellation. You could also face fines up to $1,000.

Make sure that if you change insurance companies you do not let your insurance lapse and you replace the minimums required immediately. Suspension of your license and registration will begin if you do not provide proof of replacement insurance within 45 days from the cancellation of your previous policy.

You must carry proof of insurance coverage in the vehicle at all times. Rather than carry it with you, keep it in the glove compartment to protect yourself and any other drivers in the household who use the vehicle. If you are pulled over by a law enforcement officer and cannot produce proof of insurance you may still be fined even if you do have coverage.