If you’re like most Americans, you probably spent a good deal of time researching before you decided to buy a new car. Unfortunately, many drivers don’t spend nearly as much time selecting the ideal auto insurance policy.
Car insurance is crucial—not only because you’re legally mandated to carry it in Illinois and Iowa, but also because it protects you, your vehicle, your family, and your assets in the case of a Quad Cities car accident. Learn more about choosing the right car insurance coverage for you from the experienced attorneys at Winstein, Kavensky & Cunningham.
What You Need to Know About Illinois Car Insurance
Because the Quad Cities straddle the state lines of Illinois and Iowa, it’s important that you purchase the correct insurance in your state of residence. So if you live in Moline, East Moline, or Rock Island, your insurance policy will need to meet the following requirements.
How Much Car Insurance Do I Need in Illinois?
According to Illinois’ car insurance law (625 ILCS 5/7-203), all motorists must carry at least:
- $25,000 in bodily injury liability coverage (per person)
- $50,000 in bodily injury liability coverage (per accident)
- $20,000 in property damage liability coverage (per accident)
This is the minimum Illinois car insurance you must carry as a driver. Bodily injury liability insurance goes into effect when you cause a car accident that results in bodily injury to another driver or their passengers. Property damage liability insurance covers any property damage to the other driver’s vehicle.
This is often called third-party liability insurance because it does not cover any injuries or property damage to you or your passengers. As such, you may want to consider investing in additional coverage beyond the state minimum.
What Is the Average Car Insurance Cost in Illinois?
How much your car insurance will cost you per year will vary considerably depending on several key factors, including the level of coverage you choose, your age, gender, credit score, previous moving violations or accidents you have caused, and the age of your car.
In general however, if you don’t have a long history of car accidents or traffic violations and you opt for the lowest Illinois car insurance requirements listed above, you could pay as little as $422 per year on your car insurance, according to the Zebra. Doubling your liability coverage amounts and adding on optional collision coverage would increase your yearly premium to just under $1,000 if you have decent credit and a good driving record.
Those who have been convicted of a crime like driving under the influence or reckless driving will often pay far more for their coverage, as much as $2,500 per year. Younger drivers usually end up paying the most, though, with the average 16-year-old paying an annual premium of over $5,000. That being said, young drivers may be able to secure lower insurance rates if they are added on to their parents’ insurance policy.
What You Need to Know About Iowa Car Insurance
It’s important to note that if you live in Davenport or Bettendorf, you’ll be subject to Iowa car insurance minimums, which differ from those required in Illinois. Find out more about Iowa insurance requirements below.
How Much Car Insurance Do I Need in Iowa?
According to the Iowa Insurance Division, all motorists must carry at least:
- $20,000 in bodily injury liability coverage (per person)
- $40,000 in bodily injury liability coverage (per accident)
- $15,000 in property damage liability coverage (per accident)
What Is the Average Car Insurance Cost in Iowa?
As in Illinois, how much you pay for car insurance will depend on an array of factors, including the level of coverage you choose. Overall, insurance coverage is a little bit cheaper in Iowa than in Illinois. If you only purchase the minimum amount of insurance required by Iowa car insurance laws, you could spend as little as $313 per year per statistics from the Zebra.
If you increase your liability policy limits from the modest minimum requirement to something more substantial, like 50/100/50 coverage, your yearly premium will only increase to $352 per year if you’re a good driver with good credit. For even more coverage, you may be able to add comprehensive and collision coverage and still pay less than $900 per year.
If you have a history of speeding tickets, accidents in which you were at fault, or DUIs, you could pay significantly more for coverage, anywhere from $1,400 to $1,700 per year. Again, the youngest drivers get the short end of the stick when it comes to car insurance coverage, paying upwards of $4,000 a year unless they are part of a parent’s policy.
How Much Car Insurance You REALLY Need in the Quad Cities
Now that you know how much car insurance you’re required to have in the Quad Cities, let’s get to the important question—what’s the right amount of coverage for you?
Typical car insurance minimums protect you from paying out of pocket for medical expenses and property damage incurred by the occupants of another vehicle after an accident you caused, but only up to a certain amount.
While $50,000 for bodily injury liability may seem like a lot in theory, in a multi-car accident with multiple passengers, your policy limit may be exhausted much more quickly than you’d thought. This is especially true when you consider that bodily injury liability also often pays for lost wages, pain and suffering, and, in cases of wrongful death, funeral costs.
To protect yourself financially, consider purchasing liability coverage with a policy limit that is greater than or equal to your assets. This reduces the risk of your assets being liquidated in order to pay for an injured motorist’s expenses should they attempt to sue you.
Collision and Comprehensive
Liability coverage helps pay for damage to other drivers, but without full coverage, you may be left with your own expenses. Collision insurance can help you repair or replace your vehicle, regardless of who was at fault for an accident. Comprehensive insurance covers unavoidable situations or those out of your control, such as theft, vandalism, or collisions with an animal. Just keep in mind that full coverage usually comes with a deductible, and make sure to choose a plan with a deductible you can actually afford.
Underinsured / Uninsured Motorist
Luckily, both Iowa and Illinois aren’t among the top states for uninsured drivers. However, more than one in ten drivers in both of these states are still driving without any car insurance. This is bad news if you’re in an accident, even if you weren’t the one at fault.
The good news is that, if you have collision coverage, you won’t have to worry about paying to repair or replace your vehicle. On the other hand, though, you could still be left with mounting medical bills, missed time off work resulting in lost wages, and other losses. If you’re hit by an uninsured driver—or a driver who doesn’t have nearly enough coverage—underinsured and uninsured motorist coverage can provide you with peace of mind that your medical bills will be taken care of.
This type of coverage is recommended particularly for those who have limited health insurance coverage. Other options for those with less-than-ideal health insurance include personal injury protection (PIP) and medical payments (MedPay). PIP is only available in Illinois but will pay for your injuries and lost wages in any accident, even one you caused. MedPay is available in all the Quad Cities and also covers you if you are injured as a passenger, pedestrian, or even in a bike accident.
Need Help Filing a Quad Cities Car Accident Claim?
If you or a loved one has been injured in a car, truck, or motorcycle accident in Davenport, Bettendorf, Rock Island, Moline, or East Moline through no fault of your own, you could be entitled to significant compensation. Before you accept the first settlement offer from a car insurance company (or if a car insurance company has already denied your claim), reach out to a lawyer well-versed in how Iowa and Illinois car insurance companies work.
Our personal injury attorneys offer free, no risk consultations to all prospective clients. We’ll review the details of your case, help you establish the value of your claim, and provide all your legal options so that you can make an informed decision with no obligation to hire us. Call us now at (309) 794-1515, connect with one of our LiveChat agents, or request your free consultation online.
Our legal team is available for home and hospital visits, in addition to evening and weekend appointments. In addition, should you decide to use our services, you won’t pay us any fees unless we obtain a financial recovery on your behalf. Contact us today!