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Washington, D.C. Auto Insurance Requirements

What is the Compulsory or Mandatory Auto Insurance Law in DC?
The Compulsory/No-Fault Motor Vehicle Insurance Act requires that every person applying for registration or a reciprocity sticker in DC, have valid DC vehicle insurance. The insurance must be maintained as long as the vehicle is registered. Lapses in coverage are subject to fines too. Do not cancel insurance until vehicle tags are surrendered to the DMV. Failure to surrender tags after termination or cancellation of insurance will assess a fine and penalties.

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What are the minimum required limits in the Federal City?
Under Washington, D.C. law, youíre required to have car insurance liability limits of at least 25/50/10, and 25/50 UM BI, and 5 UM PD. What does this mean? It means:
$25,000 per person, for bodily injury liability you cause
$50,000 per accident, for bodily injury, and
$10,000 per accident, for damage to anotherís property, usually their car.
$25,000 per person for Uninsured Motorist bodily injury, and
$50,000 per accident, and
$5,000 for property damage subject to a $200 deductible.

Proof of Insurance
If youíre stopped by a Washington, D.C. law enforcement officer, you must present an insurance identification card showing that the car is insured.

Under District of Columbia law, motorists who are stopped by the police are required to display not only their driver's license and vehicle registration, but also proof of insurance. Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) officers enforce the "proof of insurance" law -- and the $30 civil fine that is attached to this infraction

The goal is to reduce the number of drivers in DC who do not carry insurance as required by District law. Uninsured drivers are a serious problem, undermining traffic safety and driving up the costs for insured, law-abiding motorists.

DC law defines proof of insurance as "a document issued by an insurance company that lists the name of the insurance company, the policy number, the name or names of the insured, and the period of coverage for the insurance."

Metropolitan Police officers will be issuing citations, which carry a fine of $30, for failing to provide proof of insurance. The MPD reminds motorists that the law applies to everyone who drives in the District, regardless of where their vehicle is registered or driver's license is issued.

Upon issuance of a new car insurance policy, and anytime at your request, an insurance company will provide a card or temporary proof of insurance for each car covered under your policy and if you purchase your insurance from InstantCarInsurance.com or Ensurance.com you can also print your ID cards online instantly, anytime and for free.

Insurance Lapses
Failure to maintain continuous valid insurance on a vehicle registered in the District of Columbia will result in suspension of registration tags and reciprocity sticker. An individual will be assessed a fine of $150 for a lapse in insurance coverage from 1 to 30 days and $7 for each additional uninsured day after the first 30 days. Insurance lapse fines may be paid at any DMV service center location.

In Case of an Accident
In case of an accident, please notify the insurance company and file an accident report with the Metropolitan Police Department. Do not report the accident to the DMV.

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