AutoInsurance.com
Published: March 29, 2022Last updated: October 19, 2022

Uninsured Motorists Statistics: 2022 U.S. Report

12 percent of U.S. drivers lack car insurance. What does that cost the rest of us?

Every state except New Hampshire and Virginia requires drivers to have minimum amounts of car insurance. The purpose of car insurance is to fulfill drivers’ financial responsibilities for both bodily injury and property damage losses in accidents they cause.

However, not everyone complies with these requirements: An estimated 12 percent of drivers in the U.S. lack insurance. That’s why many people in the U.S. have insurance coverage specifically for accidents that uninsured drivers cause. After performing a survey in March of 2022, we analyzed the trends of uninsured motorist coverage in the U.S. These were our key findings:

  • Nearly three-quarters of drivers in the U.S. have some form of uninsured motorist coverage.
  • While the median cost of uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage is $50 a year, the median for uninsured motorist property damage coverage is $38 a year.
  • Because of uninsured motorists, people with uninsured motorist coverage pay a total of nearly $2 billion annually.

How Common Is Uninsured Motorist Coverage?

Nearly three-quarters of drivers in the U.S. have some form of uninsured motorist coverage, which is separated into bodily injury coverage and property damage coverage.

Survey question: Do you currently have uninsured motorist coverage? Select all that apply. Percentage of respondents who selected this answer
Uninsured motorist bodily injury 74%
Uninsured motorist property damage 59%
I don’t carry either of these coverages 26%

Of these policies, nearly three-quarters are six months long, while nearly a third are annual.

Survey question: What is the coverage period for your auto insurance policy? Percentage of respondents who selected this answer
12-month policy 27%
6-month policy 73%

More Information on Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Coverage

Not all states require uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, but it’s necessary to get your losses covered in an accident that an uninsured or underinsured driver caused.

What Is Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Coverage?

Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage exists to reimburse you for your bodily injury and property damage losses from an accident caused by someone who drove without insurance or lacked limits high enough to cover your losses completely. In many states, uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage includes hit-and-runs, accidents in which the driver flees the scene without leaving any insurance or contact information.

How It Works

If someone hits your car or hits your parked car, uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage would reimburse you for your losses (detailed below). Sometimes uninsured motorist coverage is bundled with underinsured motorist coverage, and sometimes they’re separate.

What It Covers

Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage covers the following:

  • Any other damage to your property
  • Any other out-of-pocket expenses
  • Car repairs
  • Collision insurance deductible
  • Funeral expenses
  • Loss of income
  • Lost wages
  • Medical bills
  • Pain and suffering
  • Rental car cost1

Cost

Despite the increasingly high cost of car insurance, uninsured motorist coverage is relatively inexpensive for both bodily injury and property damage coverage. The median price of uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage is just $50 a year.

Uninsured motorist bodily injury Price
25th quartile $30
Median $50
75th quartile $80

The median price of uninsured motorist property damage coverage is even less at $38 annually.

Uninsured motorist property damage Price
25th quartile $21
Median $38
75th quartile $54

All in all, you can get away with paying a median price of $90 a year for uninsured liability coverage.

Uninsured motorist bodily injury and property damage Combined price
25th quartile $64
Median $90
75th quartile $132

Coverage Limits

The coverage liability limits are how much insurance companies will pay under covered insurance claims. For example, with a 100/300 limit, an insurance company would pay up to $100,000 for accidents involving one person, or $300,000 for accidents involving two or more people.

Survey question: What is your level of coverage for uninsured motorist bodily injury per person and per occurrence (in thousands of dollars)? Percentage of respondents who selected this answer
10/20 2%
10/30 2%
15/30 4%
20/40 8%
25/30 1%
25/50 27%
25/65 2%
30/60 7%
50/100 24%
100/200 1%
100/300 20%
250/500 3%

The most common liability limits for uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage are $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident, which 27 percent of our survey respondents have.

Survey question: What is the coverage amount for your uninsured motorist property damage? Percentage of respondents who selected this answer
$100,000 10%
$10,000 9%
$15,000 8%
$20,000 7%
$25,000 31%
$5,000 4%
$50,000 24%
$7,500 3%
$75,000 4%

For property damage coverage, one-third of respondents have $25,000 limits — a plurality but not a majority.

Deductibles

Under a covered uninsured motorist claim, the deductible is the amount you’ll pay before your insurance provider contributes. Over one-third of survey respondents with uninsured motorist property damage coverage have $0 deductibles, meaning they don’t have to pay anything out of pocket before they’re compensated for their property damage losses, while 1 in 5 have $250 deductibles.

Survey question: What is your deductible for uninsured motorist property damage? Percentage of respondents who selected this answer
$0 36%
$50 3%
$100 10%
$120 1%
$150 3%
$200 12%
$250 20%
$300 6%
$500 8%
$1,000 1%

The Number of Uninsured Motorists in the U.S.

As of 2019, the last time the Insurance Research Council published national data, an estimated 12 percent of drivers in the U.S. lack car insurance. That means over 29 million licensed drivers do not have any financial liability protection when driving, an average of 581,080 drivers per state.

State Estimated percentage of uninsured drivers in 2019 (high to low) Difference from national average Estimated number of uninsured licensed drivers per state in 2019
Mississippi 29% 57% 605,063
Michigan 26% 51% 1,821,081
Tennessee 24% 47% 1,285,116
New Mexico 22% 43% 316,037
Washington 22% 42% 1,239,317
Florida 20% 39% 3,174,368
Alabama 20% 36% 785,099
Arkansas 19% 35% 415,708
Washington, D.C. 19% 35% 102,296
California 17% 25% 4,517,466
Rhode Island 17% 24% 125,573
Missouri 16% 24% 701,000
Colorado 16% 23% 690,368
Alaska 16% 22% 85,214
Indiana 16% 21% 725,126
Maryland 14% 11% 629,405
Kentucky 14% 10% 421,216
Oklahoma 13% 7% 338,038
Wisconsin 13% 6% 571,454
Idaho 13% 5% 165,335
North Dakota 13% 4% 72,288
Ohio 13% 4% 1,044,263
Georgia 12% -1% 900,397
Illinois 12% -6% 1,008,538
Arizona 12% -6% 633,567
Louisiana 12% -7% 401,915
Iowa 11% -11% 257,011
Kansas 11% -15% 234,814
South Carolina 11% -15% 422,699
Oregon 11% -17% 313,585
Virginia 11% -19% 618,261
Nevada 10% -20% 213,660
Minnesota 10% -26% 335,715
Nebraska 9% -34% 133,066
Hawaii 9% -34% 87,715
West Virginia 9% -36% 103,996
Vermont 9% -42% 49,711
Delaware 9% -47% 69,065
Montana 9% -47% 69,007
Texas 8% -51% 1,479,289
South Dakota 7% -69% 47,244
North Carolina 7% -69% 563,880
Utah 7% -92% 137,871
Connecticut 6% -98% 164,308
New Hampshire 6% -105% 72,908
Pennsylvania 6% -108% 539,261
Wyoming 6% -115% 24,599
Maine 5% -155% 51,260
New York 4% -205% 499,969
Massachusetts 4% -257% 173,252
New Jersey 3%2 -303% 197,7003

The state with the highest percentage of uninsured motorists is Mississippi, where 1 in 3 drivers lack insurance. Accordingly, drivers are required to carry at least $25,000 of uninsured motorist coverage per person and $50,000 per accident4. But surprisingly, car insurance in Mississippi costs 10 percent less than the national average at only $975.58 annually, according to 2019 National Association of Insurance Commissioners data.5

Why is the ratio of uninsured drivers versus insured drivers so high in Mississippi? Perhaps it’s because Mississippi drivers don’t need to show proof of insurance when purchasing a car, renewing their license plates, or updating their driver’s licenses, making the laws difficult to enforce.6

The Cost of Driving Without Insurance

Unfortunately for those who follow the law, uninsured drivers increase the cost of car insurance for everyone else. Based on the Federal Highway Administration’s estimated number of licensed drivers in the U.S. in 2019, this is what uninsured motorist coverage costs Americans:

  • $1.1 billion in uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage
  • $664 million in uninsured motorist property damage coverage
  • $1.97 billion in combined uninsured bodily injury and property damage coverage bundles

Conclusion

When you drive without insurance, not only are you risking fees, jail time, community service, and a license suspension or revocation, you’re also forcing other people to pay in the billions for your liability. To explore more of our original data, read our car insurance research.

Methodology

After sourcing respondents on Prolific, we conducted a survey on SurveyMonkey from March 10 to March 14, 2022, getting responses from 228 U.S. adults. The respondents had car insurance from six different companies, and we provided them with information on how to access their policy declarations pages, which cover limits. We chose these insurance companies based on their market share and the availability of online instructions for accessing the declarations pages.

We also used third-party data from these sources:

  • Federal Highway Administration
  • GEICO
  • Insurance Research Council
  • Mississippi Department of Commerce
  • Richard Schwartz & Associates Injury Lawyers
  • U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration

Citations

  1. Uninsured & Underinsured Motorist Coverage. GEICO. (2022). https://www.geico.com/information/aboutinsurance/auto/uninsured-underinsured-motorist/

  2. Uninsured Motorists, 2021 Edition. Insurance Research Council. (2021, Mar). https://www.insurance-research.org/research-publications/uninsured-motorists-2021-edition

  3. Highway Statistics 2019. U.S. Department of Transportation. https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/policyinformation/statistics/2019/dl201.cfm

  4. What You Need to Know Auto Insurance. Department of Public Safety. https://dps.mn.gov/divisions/dvs/forms-documents/Documents/AutoInsuranceInfo.pdf

  5. 2018/2019 Auto Insurance Database Report. NAIC. (2022). https://content.naic.org/sites/default/files/publication-aut-pb-auto-insurance-database.pdf

  6. NEARLY 25% OF MISSISSIPPI DRIVERS ARE UNINSURED. Richard Schwartz & Associates, P.A. Injury Lawyers. (2018, Jun). https://www.1call.ms/blog/2018/june/nearly-25-of-mississippi-drivers-are-uninsured/