Washington State Car Insurance Laws

Car Accident in Washington
Getty Images/Chris Ryan

If you reside in Washington State, it is important to understand its car insurance laws. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were a total of 33,561 highway-related deaths in the year 2012, and more than 30,000 lives are lost each year on the highways. There are even more car accidents that result in injuries and damage. With such staggering statistics, you are literally putting your life into your hands every time you get behind the wheel of a car.



No matter how cautious you are, there is always the risk of being involved in an accident each time you drive. While there is no way to completely protect yourself from a car accident, there is a way to protect yourself should you be involved in an accident: car insurance.

Car insurance provides you and other drivers with financial protection should an accident occur. It can help to cover both the property and the medical damages that can occur as a result of an accident, which can end up saving you some really big bucks.

While car insurance is required in order to legally drive in the United States, insurance laws vary from state to state. In order to ensure that you are driving safely and legally, you need to be sure that you have the right coverage for your state.
 

State Minimum Car Insurance Coverage In Washington

Every state has determined a minimum amount of car insurance coverage that is required.

This minimum is determined by the rate of car accidents that occur within a state as well as the damages incurred from these accidents.

In Washington State, your car insurance policy must provide:

  • $25,000 coverage for each person who suffers injuries in a car accident
  • $50,000 for an accident, should more than person suffer an injury


While these are the minimums under Washington State law, it is always a wise idea to have more coverage than the minimum. The more coverage you have, the more protected you, your passengers, and other drivers will be.

Washington State Uninsured and Underinsured Laws

While it is against the law to drive without car insurance, not everyone abides by the law. There are those who drive without the minimum amount of insurance coverage, or who drive without any car insurance coverage whatsoever. In the event that you are involved in an accident with someone who is underinsured or uninsured, you could end up in serious financial trouble.

It is not necessary for motorists to carry uninsured and underinsured coverage; however, insurance companies do make this type of coverage available to drivers who would like to carry it.

Penalties for Driving Without Insurance In Washington

Whenever you drive a car in Washington State, you are required to show your car insurance coverage card to law enforcement officials, should it be needed. This means if you are involved in an accident or pulled over, you have to be able to show proof of your insurance coverage when asked.



Your proof of coverage must clearly show the name of the insurance company; your policy number; the date that the policy is effective and the date it expires; and the description of the year, make, and model of the vehicle that is insured.

If you are asked to show proof of insurance and are unable to do so, you will be found guilty of a traffic infraction.

If you drive a car without the necessary insurance, you will also be found guilty of a traffic infraction, which will cost you a minimum of $450.

When it comes to driving, making sure that you and others are as safe as possible is vital. Car insurance provides the necessary protection for drivers and others on the road.