Learn even more about the car insurance laws in Florida.
Financial Responsibility Law
Florida’s financial responsibility laws dictate that all drivers must pay $10,000 if they cause a death or injury to one person in a crash, or $20,000 for accidents with two or more people. You can fulfill this through a regular insurance policy or self-insurance, which we detail below2.
Florida is a no-fault state, which means that in a car accident, each party pays for their own medical costs, child care, and lost wages through personal injury protection. But like liability states, no fault still means that the at-fault driver will pay for the other driver’s property damage.
If you are a non-resident, you’ll have to get a Florida insurance policy, license plate, and registration under the following circumstances:
- You’ve accepted employment in Florida.
- You’ve engaged in a profession, trade, or occupation in Florida.
- You’ve enrolled your children in a Florida public school.
In any of these cases, you’ll need to begin your registration 10 days after your employment or enrollment begins. Also, get a new title from Florida, unless your lienholder or lessor refuses to release your out-of-state title.
Moving Out of State
For those leaving the Sunshine State, make sure not to cancel your Florida insurance before you’ve registered your vehicle in your new state and surrendered your plates and registration to a Florida DMV or tax collector’s office. You don’t want to get caught driving without insurance, which brings us to our next point.
Penalties for Driving Without Insurance
If you get caught violating Florida’s financial responsibility laws and driving without insurance, you could face penalties based on the number of offenses.
- First offense: License and registration suspension until you pay the reinstatement fee of $150 and get coverage
- Second offense: License and registration suspension until you pay the reinstatement fee of $250 and get coverage
- Third offense: License and registration suspension until you pay the reinstatement fee of $500 for three years following reinstatement and get coverage
While Florida does not have the more common proof of financial responsibility, an SR-22, it does have an FR-44, which indicates proof of insurance higher than the minimum coverage. If you’ve gotten a DUI conviction, you’ll need to carry an FR-44 for three years after your license is reinstated, providing proof of the following coverages.
- Bodily injury liability: $100,000 per person, $300,000 per accident
- Property damage liability: $50,0003
But before you get physical damage coverage, you’ll need to get a CARCO inspection to make sure your car is in good physical condition. When you visit a CARCO location, an inspector will examine and take photos of your vehicle, filling out a form and submitting it to your insurer. An inspection is free and takes about 15 minutes4.
Diminished Value State
Like every state except Michigan, Florida is a diminished value state. That means that if you get into an accident that isn’t your fault, you might be able to claim your car’s diminished value from your insurance company. Whenever your car sustains damage and requires repairs, it loses a certain amount of value, so you won’t be able to sell it for as much as you otherwise could have. In other words, you could be entitled to receive that amount back to compensate for what the no-fault accident will “cost” you when you sell your car.