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Tennessee may be the Volunteer State, but you shouldn’t voluntarily pay more than you need to for car insurance.
This page will show you which types of coverage are legally required in Tennessee, provide information about the cost of driving including average rates, and share some insights about insurance risk to help you protect yourself and your family.
Average car insurance rates in Tennessee are well below the national average. Prices may vary depending on your limits, urban conditions, coverage, and zip code.
On average, the cost of auto insurance in Tennessee is $724.81 a year. The national average annual price is $866.31.
|Total Annual Cost||$724.81|
|Price Per Month||$60.40|
Finding an auto insurance provider in Tennessee that is reliable is important these days. But how do you determine which insurer is right for you?
One way is to compare rates from a number of different car insurance companies. Let QuoteWizard help you do that. We’ll get you all the info you need, and connect you to a handful of agents, so you can find a policy that you, your vehicle, and your wallet will love.
Last year, 74,679 people used QuoteWizard to compare car insurance quotes in Tennessee from top companies, and find the cheapest rates.
These are the most common vehicles owned by Tennessee drivers requesting car insurance quotes through QuoteWizard in the past year.
Last year, these were the most common car insurance companies reported by QuoteWizard users living in the state of Tennessee. Out of the 74,679 Tennessee drivers that used QuoteWizard to request insurance quotes last year, 15,243 had no car insurance.
Legally, almost all US drivers are required to carry a minimum level of insurance, but those levels vary from state to state. In Tennessee, drivers need to follow what is known as the 25/50/15 rule when it comes to their insurance policy.
This means that any policy must include the following:
Remember, you can purchase more inclusive plans that cover more, but if you want the bare minimum required to keep you legal on the road, make sure your policy has the above protection. And, if you’ve financed your car through a lender, they’ll require that you purchase collision and comprehensive coverage to protect their investment.
Just like your driver's license, it is important to always carry proof of insurance for your car. Tennessee law requires you at all times to have proof of insurance at hand while operating a motor vehicle.
The card must include the following information:
Failure to provide proof of insurance is a class C misdemeanor punishable by a maximum fine of up to $100. Upon notifying the state of the conviction, the driver’s license will be suspended, and their registration/renewal will be put on hold.
Tennessee residents that have had their driver’s license suspended due to drunk driving convictions or other violations must provide proof of financial responsibility by filing an SR-22 form. “SR” stands for safety responsibility and it certifies that a driver has the minimum amount of insurance required by state law.
Tennessee State law requires that an SR-22 be carried for 36 consecutive months. If a driver fails to renew their policy 15 days before expiration, a letter is sent to the state resulting in suspension of their license. Once renewed, the license will be reinstated, but this can be a time-consuming process.
Novice drivers are prohibited from using cell phones while driving in the state of Tennessee. School bus drivers are also prohibited from using cell phones while driving in Tennessee. All drivers are prohibited from sending or receiving text messages while driving.
Tennessee’s Implied Consent law requires that any driver submit to testing to determine the alcohol or drug content of their blood, breath, or urine when stopped by law enforcement if they reasonably believe that you’ve been driving while intoxicated (DWI). Refuse the test and you’ll face the following penalties in addition to the penalties for a DWI:
If you drive or operate a motor vehicle in the State of Tennessee with a Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) of 0.08%, you are guilty of Driving While Intoxicated (DWI). The penalties for a DWI are severe and will include jail time. As if that wasn't enough, your insurance rates are going to skyrocket.
Click here to see the full text of Tennessee’s car seat laws:
Proper use of child safety seats reduces fatalities by 71%
Tennessee has implemented a 3-tier graduated driver’s license system beginning with a learner permit and ending with full driver privileges once all conditions are met.
Teens are allowed to apply for a learner permit once they’re 15 years old. To get a license, drivers with a learner permit are first required to drive 50 hours under supervision. Ten of those hours must be at night. Once these conditions are satisfied, and the driver has reached at least the age of 16, they can take the driver’s test. If they pass the test, the driver is issued an intermediate driver's license.
Drivers with intermediate restricted licenses cannot drive between the hours of 11 pm and 6 am. They also cannot have more than one other passenger in the car with them. Teens must have an intermediate restricted license for one year before they may apply for an intermediate unrestricted license. Once a driver obtains an intermediate unrestricted license, the driving restrictions end. Drivers obtain an unrestricted license, and their full driving privileges once they turn 18.
All drivers are required to renew their driver’s license every 5 years. Beginning at age 60, Tennessee drivers’ renewal fees are reduced. Once a Tennessee driver turns 65, their license will no longer expire, so it does not need to be renewed.
Tennessee requires that the driver and all passengers in the front seat wear seat belts, if they are age 16 or older. Children are required to use approved child seats as mentioned above.
When you drive a vehicle in Tennessee that is required to be registered in another state, you must have the type of insurance required by that state. You must be able to provide proof of this insurance to law enforcement if requested.
The average cost of car insurance in Tennessee in 2014, the most recent year for which data was available, was $724.81 compared to a national average of $866.31. Tennessee is the 35th most expensive state for car insurance.
The state of Tennessee taxes gasoline at 21.4 cents per gallon and diesel fuel at 18.4 cents per gallon. This is in addition to the Federal fuel tax of 18.4 cents per gallon on gasoline, and 24.4 cents per gallon on diesel. The total tax on a gallon of gasoline in Tennessee is 39.8 cents. For diesel the total tax amounts to 42.8 cents per gallon.
In 2014, there were 962 traffic fatalities in Tennessee, an 3.3% decrease from the state’s 995 traffic fatalities in 2013.
The Tennessee Department of Safety archives a wide variety of crash statistics, both for the state as a whole and broken out by county: Crash Statistics
Tennessee had 12,599 vehicle thefts reported in 2014, an 5.8% increase compared to 2013. In 2014, the vehicle theft rate was 192.4 per 100,000, a 5% increase from 183.2 per 100,000 in 2013.
The vehicle theft rate in Tennessee is slightly lower than the overall US vehicle theft rate, which was 216.2 per 100,000 in 2014.
Some cars are more prone to theft than others, be sure to check the list below to see if your car is a target on the streets.
Source: National Insurance Crime Bureau - Hot Wheels Report 2014
The percentage of Tennessee residents estimated to be driving without insurance is a very 20.1%. That ranks Tennessee as #6 among US states and the District of Columbia, much higher than average.
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