Oklahoma Car Insurance
Oklahoma has the third most expensive car insurance premiums in the country. Oklahoma drivers average around $2,197, placing it just behind Michigan and Louisiana on the most expensive states list for auto insurance. The average is calculated based on all drivers in an area, however, so individual policies may be higher or lower depending on a customer’s individual profile.
How do car insurance companies calculate cost in Oklahoma?
On a personal level, car insurance premiums are determined by a driver’s risk of filing a future claim. A person’s history of accidents, traffic violations, DUI convictions and even credit score can factor in to the cost of his insurance. On a larger scale, insurance rates vary from one state to the next due to weather, driving demographics, crime rates and more non-driver specific factors.
In Oklahoma, one of the largest factors contributing to the high cost of insurance is a high percentage of uninsured drivers. Every time a person without insurance is involved in an auto accident, the other party’s insurance must compensate for the expense by increasing premiums. In this way, uninsured motorists lead to higher premiums for all drivers.
“24 percent of Oklahoma drivers have no insurance”
Only Alabama, New Mexico and Mississippi have more uninsured drivers. Unfortunately, high premiums are a leading cause of people choosing to drive without insurance, so it is a self-perpetuating cycle.
Drunk driving is another major factor in determining car insurance rates. Drunk driving isn’t as much of a concern in Oklahoma as in many other states; in 2009, for example, there were 256 drinking-related traffic fatalities. This accounts for 36 percent of all car fatalities in the state that year. While certainly not low, this number is substantially lower than neighboring Texas, which had nearly 1,500 drunk driving fatalities that year.
Weather is another important contributing factor in the insurance premiums throughout Oklahoma. Weather-related claims can quickly add up, causing rates to increase throughout an area as catastrophic weather causes damage to multiple vehicles at one time. Oklahoma regularly suffers from tornadoes and hail, both of which can cause severe damage to a vehicle. Hail especially is responsible for totaling hundreds of cars every year.
The specific car insurance requirements of a given state will also play a role in determining the cost of insurance in the area. Some areas have higher limits of liability than others, which means that the average insurance cost will be higher for those states; when similar policies are compared, the price gap becomes narrower.
Oklahoma Car Insurance Requirements
In order to register a vehicle in Oklahoma, all drivers must purchase at least $25,000 in property damage liability and $25,000 per person for bodily injury liability up to $50,000 per accident. Although these limits are fairly high, it’s a good idea to buy as much liability insurance as you can afford. Many people prefer limits of $100,000 for property and up to $300,000 for injuries. Any time a claim costs more than your insurance policy covers, you may be responsible for paying the difference out of pocket.
Other coverage is optional in Oklahoma. Considering the high number of uninsured drivers, purchasing uninsured motorist coverage is probably a good idea. This coverage acts as a replacement for another driver’s liability insurance, and it usually has the same limits as the policy’s liability coverage. The deductible for uninsured motorist coverage is often lower than the collision deductible.
Vehicles still being financed or leased must carry collision and comprehensive coverage. A driver who owns his vehicle outright has the option of dropping full coverage and carrying a liability-only policy instead. This should not be done unless the vehicle is no longer worth repairing after an accident.
Drivers in Oklahoma can also purchase additional coverage such as rental reimbursement, roadside assistance and first-party medical coverage. Be sure to ask the insurance agent about adding these as they are not included in standard full coverage and must be purchased separately.
If you’ve recently moved to Oklahoma, car your insurance rates may have increased. In order to counteract the cost, you can check to see if there are any safe driving discounts you might qualify for. You can also discuss other discounts with the insurance company to see if you can pay a reduced rate due to good grades, low mileage or other factors.
Whether you’re new to Oklahoma or just looking for affordable insurance, the best possible car insurance rates are often received by car insurance comparison shopping online. Getting free quotes is fast and easy and you need to compare similar policies across several different insurance companies to see who offers the best rates.