North Dakota has the 11th highest car insurance premiums in the country, ranking just behind Maryland and Arkansas. The average driver pays about $1,794 annually for full coverage car insurance. Any individual policy in North Dakota may cost more or less than the state average depending on the policy itself as car insurance rates are largely based on the driving record and habits of the insured driver, so an individual may pay more or less for car insurance.

How do car insurance companies calculate premiums in North Dakota?

Auto insurance costs will vary from one state to the next; in some cases, premiums may even vary between zip codes. Some of the largest factors in determining the cost of insurance in an area are the population density, number of drivers, severity of traffic, weather, population of uninsured drivers, number of DUI convictions and crime rate in the area.

Very few motorists drive without insurance in North Dakota. In fact, only 5 percent of drivers are uninsured. Additionally, North Dakota ranks as one of the lowest states for drunk driving in the country. In 2011, there were only 47 DUI-related fatalities in the state, accounting for 44 percent of all traffic fatalities. Considering the large geographic size of North Dakota, this is an extremely low rate of auto accidents.

Other factors influencing the cost of auto insurance include weather and other geographic considerations. There are few major cities in North Dakota, so congested city traffic and commutes are not a major cause of auto accidents. There are some weather events in the area, especially hail, that contribute to vehicle losses. Like other rural states, North Dakota also has a heavy deer population, and collisions with deer account for a large number of single-car collisions every year.

Many heavily-populated areas will have higher insurance premiums due to the higher incidence of car accidents. The more drivers in an area, the more likely an accident is to occur. Even rural areas like North and South Dakota often have high insurance premiums, though, due to other factors. In the case of North Dakota, insurance rates are largely determined by the required insurance minimums in the state. When a North Dakota policy is compared to another state’s insurance with equal coverage, the price is actually very reasonable.

Car Insurance Requirements in North Dakota

In order to register a vehicle in North Dakota, a driver must carry at least $25,000 in property damage liability insurance and $25,000/$50,000 of bodily injury liability. These limits are fairly consistent with other states, although higher than some. It’s always a good idea to buy as much liability insurance as you can afford, though, as any injuries or damage beyond the coverage limit can be charged to the vehicle’s owner out of pocket.

All states set their own limits for what insurance coverage is required. North Dakota requires more car insurance than most other states, which accounts for its relatively high price. In addition to liability insurance, North Dakota residents must also carry personal injury protection and uninsured motorist insurance.

Uninsured motorist insurance serves as a replacement for another driver’s liability coverage in the event that someone without insurance causes a car accident. In most cases, the uninsured motorist limits will be the same as those for liability coverage.

Personal injury protection (PIP) coverage pays for injuries sustained by an insured driver or his passengers. In North Dakota, a minimum of $30,000 in PIP coverage is required. Additional coverage can be purchased if the insured wishes. North Dakota is a quantitative no-fault state, meaning that a person’s bodily injury liability insurance can only pay up to a certain amount toward injuries sustained in an accident; over that amount, an injured party’s own insurance must cover injuries.

In addition to the state-mandated coverage, insured drivers in North Dakota can also purchase full coverage auto insurance by buying collision and comprehensive coverage. This is required for all leased or financed vehicles, and should also be purchased on any vehicle that is new or has a high value. Older vehicles or those not worth repairing do not require full coverage insurance.

Drivers can also purchase additional coverage such as rental reimbursement or roadside assistance coverage. This is not offered by all insurance companies and the specific details of the coverage may vary from one policy to the next, so it’s a good idea to check with the agent prior to purchasing a policy to make sure that the desired coverage is available.

Car insurance in North Dakota can be pricey, but the extensive coverage is well worth the price. You can get the best deal on insurance by comparison shopping online. Obtaining a free quote is fast and easy and allows you to compare similar policies across several different insurance companies. Once you choose a company that you like, you can discuss your specific policy needs with the agent to confirm that you’re getting the best coverage for your family.