And why the no-fault insurance system might change
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Florida is a no-fault insurance state, meaning each driver must have personal injury protection (PIP) and is responsible for their own injuries. Insurance is more expensive in no-fault states. In fact, car insurance premiums in Florida are nearly a third more than the national average. How does this affect the state’s 4.6 million adults age 65 and older? Here’s what you need to know about getting car insurance as a senior in Florida.
The state of Florida requires property damage coverage and PIP. The first thing you need to do is make sure you’re hitting the minimum coverage requirements for driving in the state.
The minimum car insurance in Florida is as follows.
Florida does not require bodily injury coverage, collision coverage, comprehensive coverage, or uninsured motorist coverage. If you want damages to your car or accidents with uninsured motorists covered, we recommend full-coverage car insurance with limits as high as you can afford.
You need car insurance to register a car in Florida. Get your proof of car insurance before you register your car either online or in person.
Car insurance in Florida for seniors is around $2,097.05 on average, but expect to pay anywhere from $763 to $5,072 annually. Costs will be higher if you get into an accident, are convicted of a DUI, or get higher coverage than the minimum.
It’s no secret that insuring your car in Florida is expensive, but it’s worth the cost to avoid legal and financial penalties. Here are the penalties for driving without insurance in Florida:
|Penalty||First offense||Second offense||Third and subsequent offenses within 3 years of first reinstatement|
|Suspension of license and registration until you pay the reinstatement fee and secure noncancelable coverage||Yes||Yes||Yes|
Aside from the penalties, you’ll be responsible for your medical costs and property damages, and the other party’s property damages too, in at-fault accidents. Although not having insurance will save you money in the short term, it’s not worth it in the long term, especially if you have an accident.
Even though Florida ranks fifth in the nation for high car insurance costs2, there are some ways you, as a senior, can lower your prices.
Florida is a no-fault state, meaning each person is responsible for their own medical costs under PIP, while the at-fault party pays for the other party’s property damage.
However, there have been recent bills in the Florida House of Representatives and Senate that would repeal this no-fault law. House Bill 1525 and Senate Bill 150 are in the Judiciary Committee as of March 2022,4 so it remains to be seen whether these bills will pass. If they do, bodily injury coverage would replace PIP, so the at-fault party would be responsible for the other party’s medical costs.5
Many have warned that repealing Florida’s no-fault law would make car insurance even more expensive. In fact, the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation estimates that costs would increase by 48 percent,6 causing higher numbers of uninsured motorists.
Florida is already sixth in the nation for the percentage of people driving without insurance, which is an estimated 1 in 5 drivers as of 2019.7 We will continue to monitor this legislation and see how it affects both auto insurance costs and the percentage of people driving without insurance.
Rather than the more common SR-22 forms that prove minimum insurance, Florida requires FR-44s for DUI convictions, forms that prove you have more than the minimum insurance. You would need to have the following.
As of March 2022, PIP is still a requirement in Florida, with a $10,000 liability limit. These medical/disability benefits include $10,000 in these categories:
PIP also includes $5,000 of death benefits.
Let’s say you’re a senior who uses Medicare. If you were injured in a car accident, your PIP would contribute to your medical costs before your Medicare coverage or any other health care coverage you have. In other words, Medicare is a secondary payer that will only contribute after you exhaust your PIP and health insurance benefits.8
Unlike with car insurance for seniors in Michigan, you can’t opt out of PIP in Florida, even if you have Medicare coverage.
If you’re ready to shop for car insurance in Florida, there are a few ways you can go about it.
If price is a major concern, consider the companies that offer the cheapest car insurance in Florida:
Car insurance for seniors is auto insurance specifically for drivers 55 and older. Usually, the actual policies look similar regardless of age group, but we’ll point out some key differences below.
Aside from senior discounts, the main way car insurance is different for seniors is the higher cost. Car insurance costs more for seniors in all states, even though, in Florida, they are less likely to get into crashes than any other age group.
|Age group||Number of all crashes per 100,000 drivers|
|85 and over||673|
Learn more in our senior driving statistics.
Seniors are up against a lot when it comes to finding affordable car insurance in Florida, from the state’s high costs in general to the high costs for seniors in any state. However, with a little research, you can make your auto insurance rates as low as possible, while still protecting your financial interests.
The 2021 Florida Statutes. Online Sunshine. (2022, Mar).
2019/2020 Auto Insurance Database Report. NAIC. (2023, Jan).
Senior Citizen Discount. Direct Auto Insurance. (2022).
SB 150: Motor Vehicle Insurance. The Florida Senate.
Florida Drives Toward Repeal of Motor Vehicle No-Fault Law. Insurance Journal. (2021, Apr).
The Impact of Repealing Personal Injury Protection Coverage in Florida. Pinnacle Actuarial Resources. (2021, Jun).
One in Eight Drivers Uninsured. Insurance Research Council. (2021, Mar).
USING MEDICARE OR MEDICAID COVERAGE AFTER A FLORIDA AUTO ACCIDENT. Rinaldo Law Group. (2020, Aug).
Traffic Crash Facts Annual Report 2020. FLHSMV.