Sparsely-populated Montana is known for its vast wilderness and breathtaking views. From the Rocky Mountains to the famed Going-to-the-Sun Road, Big Sky Country’s vast terrain is a sight to behold. It is also home to some of the most revered national parks in the nation, including Glacier National Park, Bighorn Canyon, Yellowstone National Park, Flathead Lake, and the Big Sky Mountain Resort, a top destination for skiers and snowboarders around the world. Let’s not forget the quaint city of Bozeman and its mountainous backdrop.
All Montana drivers must carry car insurance to drive legally in the state. Keep reading to learn more about car insurance in Montana, including state traffic data, average monthly rates paid in major cities, ways for low-income drivers to save on car insurance, and more.
- Hairpin turns and steep drop-offs make Beartooth Highway the most dangerous road in Montana.
- There were 189 fatal traffic crashes and 212 deaths as a result in 2020.
- Butte, Montana is known as the ‘Richest Hill on Planet Earth” due to its illustrious mining history.
- Billings is the largest city in Montana.
- Montana shares a land border with British Columbia, Alberta, and Saskatchewan.
- Mining and agriculture are Montana’s biggest industries.
- Jeanette Rankin, the first woman elected to congress, was born in Montana.
How Much Is Car Insurance in Montana?
The average cost of full coverage car insurance in Montana is $1,737 per year, on par with the national average rate of $1,674. Full coverage includes liability insurance, plus collision insurance and comprehensive insurance. The cheapest insurance in Montana is the state-required minimum liability insurance, which is $342 per year and consists of bodily injury/death liability insurance and property damage liability insurance.
Rates vary from person to person depending on several factors, including age, gender, zip code of residence, deductibles, and coverage limits.
What Is the Average Premium for Cheap Full Coverage Car Insurance in Montana?
In Montana, drivers pay an average of $145 per month for full coverage car insurance.
One of the best ways drivers can protect themselves and their vehicle is to obtain full coverage, which includes collision and comprehensive coverage. Collision coverage includes damages (repair or replacement costs) due to vehicle collisions, whereas comprehensive coverage protects against things outside of an accident, such as theft, hail, and vandalism. Drivers can also increase their liability insurance coverage to be more protected.
Outside of your driving record, expect the amount of liability coverage and car insurance deductible amount you choose to play a significant role in the insurance rates you pay. With higher coverage limits, more risk is passed on to the insurer, which results in a higher premium. On the other hand, increasing your deductible puts less cost on the insurer, so it will lower your premium.
How Much Is It for Cheap Liability Insurance or the Minimum Required Car Insurance in Montana?
The average state-required minimum liability car insurance in Montana works out to about $29 per month. This is quite a bit cheaper than the national average at $47 per month. Liability car insurance consists of bodily injury/death liability insurance and property damage liability insurance. The state requirement is 25/50/20 but drivers are encouraged to increase those amounts to help pay for injuries and damages you cause if you are at fault for an accident.
How Do Rates Compare Across Major Cities in Montana?
Not all cities in Montana pay the same rates. For example, each city varies in their collective driving record, percentage of younger versus older age groups, and claims history.
For the monthly average premium five major cities in Montana pay, see our breakdown below.
|City||Full Coverage Insurance||Liability Insurance Coverage|
Methodology: For average monthly rates, we used the following demographic: M 30+ with the state-required minimum coverage. There are many factors that affect the cost of car insurance, including your age, gender, driving record, and zip code of residence.
Are There Good Driver Discounts in Montana?
Yes, good driver discounts apply to Montana drivers who maintain a clean driving record free of moving violations and other offenses within the last 3-5 years.
Drivers may also be awarded on everything from installing anti-lock brakes to enrolling in defensive driving courses. Even bundling auto and homeowners insurance along with driving an older make and model vehicle is up for a discount. For example, it is far cheaper to insure a 1997 Honda Civic than a 2021 BMW X5 due to the cost of parts and labor.
Don’t forget to check for any discounts you may qualify for with your insurance agent. Other car insurance discounts include:
Safe driver and policy discounts could cut as much as 20% off your monthly bill. Some of these practices include enrolling in autopay/paperless billing and signing up for a defensive driving course. As a result, even driving your car less than 7,500 miles a year could net tremendous savings, thanks to your lower driving risk profile.
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Montana Car Insurance Laws
All Montana drivers must have auto insurance. A car insurance policy could carry the state minimum required insurance or be a cheap full coverage auto insurance policy with collision and comprehensive insurance.
What Are the Mandatory Car Insurance Requirements in Montana?
Montana’s state minimum liability requirements are as follows:
- Bodily injury liability coverage: $25,000 per person
- Bodily injury liability coverage: $50,000 per accident
- Property damage liability coverage: $20,000
Montana does not require uninsured motorist coverage, but you can add it in for insurance in case you get hit by a driver with no insurance. Uninsured motorist coverage is not expensive.
What Factors Does Montana Law Allow in Determining Your Premiums?
When determining the amount of a driver’s car insurance premium, insurers consider these factors:
- Driving record
- Zip code
- Make/model of vehicle
- Credit score
- Claims history
What Is the Penalty for Driving Without Insurance in Montana?
In Montana, driving without insurance is classified as a misdemeanor under Montana’s Motor Vehicle Insurance Responsibility and Verification Act.
If you are a first-time offender, expect to pay $250 to $500 in fines and revocation of your registration. You may also see up to 10 days in jail. Second and third offenses will see a 90-day and 180 revocation period. In short, the more times you are caught, the stiffer the penalties and the greater likelihood of jail time.
The Montana Motor Vehicle Division’s (MVD) office oversees all revoked licenses. Remember, the state’s minimum coverage limits are 25/50/20.
Am I Required to Report an Accident in Montana to Authorities?
All Montana drivers must file an accident report to the police or Department of Motor Vehicles if the accident results in injury/death to any one person or results in $1,000 or more in property damage. It must be completed within 10 days of the accident.
Failure to file a police report promptly could result in fines up to $500 and up to six months in jail. Therefore, do not hesitate to file a police report shortly after a car accident.
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What Is Driving Like in Montana?
How Many Car Accidents Happen in Montana?
According to the Montana Department of Transportation, there were 189 fatal traffic crashes in 2020 with 212 people killed, an increase over 2019 (166 fatal crashes with 184 fatalities).
For 2020 fatal accidents, 124 involved impaired drivers. In 2019, fatal accidents involved 91 impaired drivers.
For more information on Montana’s traffic crash data, including fatal and serious injury crashes and states broken out by city, visit Montana Department of Transportation – Crash Data
See our breakdown below for the percentage of fatal crashes in the top five counties from 2011 to 2020:
|County||Fatal Car Accidents 2020|
How Many Uninsured/Underinsured Motorists Are in Montana?
The Insurance Information Institute projects that 15% of all Montana drivers are uninsured, putting it squarely in 10th place in the US. The state with the lowest percentage of uninsured drivers is New Jersey (3.1 percent), and the state with the highest percentage of uninsured drivers is Mississippi at 29.4%.
The Insurance Information Institute looks at the ratio between uninsured motorist claims to bodily injury claims to make this estimate. But, unfortunately, there are no official stats on the number of uninsured and underinsured motorists.
To view the full table of the estimated percentage of uninsured motorists by state for 2019, visit Insurance Information Institute: Facts + Statistics: Uninsured motorists.
FAQs About Montana Car Insurance
I Am a Low-Income Driver. What Can I Do About Getting the Cheapest Car Insurance in Montana?
Fortunately, low-income drivers in Montana can find car insurance.
One way to keep premiums low is to consider the level of coverage you receive. Requesting the state minimum coverage ($25,000 for bodily injury per person, $50,000 for bodily injury per accident, and $20,000 for property damage) will offer savings over higher coverage limits.
Another way to cut premiums includes removing miscellaneous coverage options like rental car reimbursement, roadside assistance, and uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury coverage.
The best way to find cheap car insurance in Montana is to switch carriers. Always shop around and compare car insurance quotes to get the best car insurance for you.
Lastly, do not be afraid to request car insurance discounts, especially as your life circumstances change. For example, switching to an older make and model vehicle could cut hundreds of dollars in premiums a year off of your policy.
Can an Undocumented Worker Get Cheap Car Insurance in Montana?
Unfortunately, Montana does not allow undocumented workers to apply for a driver’s license. However, several states have enacted laws allowing undocumented workers to get their driver’s licenses. These states are California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington.
To learn more on effective dates for enacted legislation by state and other helpful facts, visit States Offering Driver’s Licenses to Immigrants.
Is It Possible to Get Low-Cost Car Insurance in Montana with a DUI Mark on my Record?
If caught at a traffic stop with a blood alcohol concentration level of 0.08% or higher (0.04% or higher for commercial drivers and 0.02% or higher for teenage drivers), expect your driving record to be affected for a very long time.
First-time DUI penalties in Montana may include a combination of up to six months in jail, $600 to $1,000 in fines, a six-month license suspension, and the required use of an ignition interlock device. You will also see points posted to your driving record. In addition, repeated offenses may require you to attend a 24/7 sobriety program.
Finding DUI car insurance may become difficult – and it will be expensive. Because you are now considered a high-risk driver, you’ll have to shop for an insurance company that offers DUI solution coverage.
Keep your driving record clean and never drive while impaired to avoid headaches and hike rates.
Get a Low-Cost Montana Car Insurance Quote Online Today!
Freeway Insurance is ready to help Montana drivers find the right coverage. For greater peace of mind while driving, we are standing by to help you find the cheapest car insurance that works for you and your family.
To learn more about Montana car insurance, please request a free car insurance quote online, visit us at an office near you, or give us a call at 800-777-5620.