Montana Car Insurance Requirements: How Much Coverage Do I Need? (2024)

Montana drivers are required to purchase a minimum of 25/50/20 in bodily injury and property damage liability coverage.
Written by Kornelia Drianovski
Edited by R.E. Fulton
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Montana
car insurance laws state that all vehicles registered in the state are required to carry minimum
car insurance
coverage of $25,000/$50,000 of bodily injury liability insurance and $20,000 of property damage liability insurance.
You’ll be charged a fine, lose your vehicle registration, and face jail time for driving without insurance.

Montana’s minimum car insurance requirements

To comply with Montana auto insurance laws, drivers are required to have the following minimum liability coverage:
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Collision insurance
: Helps pay for vehicle repairs caused by a collision with another vehicle or stationary object.
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Comprehensive insurance
: Pays for the costs of non-collision-related damage to your vehicle, like hail, flood damage, theft, vandalism, and more.
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Medical payments (MedPay)
: MedPay supplements your health insurance to help cover hospital bills after an accident. It also includes death benefits.
The state of Montana also requires car insurance companies to offer
uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage
to all drivers. UM/UIM takes care of you if you’re in an accident with an at-fault driver who doesn’t have enough or any liability coverage. Your UM/UIM insurance will pay for expenses up to your policy’s limit.
You have the option to reject uninsured motorist coverage in writing, making it a technically optional part of Montana’s auto insurance requirements. However, UM/UIM is a good investment for most drivers. 
Keep in mind: If you’re financing or leasing a car, the lender will likely require you to get a
full-coverage auto insurance
policy, which includes collision and comprehensive coverage. If you lease a car in Montana, expect the leasing company to require high liability limits for your auto insurance policy. 
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When you request quotes from Jerry, we'll autofill your policy with the basic coverage required by law in your state.

Is minimum auto insurance coverage the most cost-effective option?

Liability insurance is required in most states and protects you from lawsuits resulting from injuries and damage to other people or property if you’re at fault for a car accident. Unfortunately, Montana’s minimum insurance won’t be enough to protect your assets and future income if you cause a serious accident. 
And while liability insurance will pay for medical expenses and vehicle repair costs for the other party involved in the accident, it won’t pay for your own medical bills or vehicle repairs. Without additional coverage, you'll be responsible for those expenses.
Our recommendation 
  • Increase your bodily injury liability limits to at least $100,000 per person and $300,000 per accident
  • Increase your property damage liability limit to at least $100,000
  • Purchase comprehensive and collision coverage to cover the total cost of your vehicle if it were totaled
If you’re shopping for insurance with
Jerry
, you can adjust your coverage options to see how increasing your liability limit or adding full coverage options like collision and comprehensive will impact your car insurance quotes.
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Raise your liability limits and turn on full coverage with high deductibles to find affordable coverage with maximum protection.
Quotes will range based on driving profile.

Montana auto insurance rates: Minimum vs. full coverage

As of September 2023, the average minimum liability car insurance policy in Montana costs $92 monthly and $1,108 per year. The average full-coverage policy costs $140 per month and $1,677 per year.
But remember: Car insurance companies in Montana use several rating factors when
calculating car insurance premiums
, some of which include your age, driving record, car insurance coverage requirements, coverage limits, deductible, vehicle type, vehicle age, ZIP code, credit score, and more. Because driving profiles differ between individuals, auto insurance quotes will also vary between drivers and insurance providers.
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You can request quotes directly from insurance companies or work with a local agent—or Jerry’s quote comparison app can simplify that process for you with quick custom quotes.
Please note that images featured in this article are for staging purposes only.

Optional coverages in Montana

In addition to liability and uninsured motorist coverage, look into these optional coverages:
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Collision insurance
: Helps pay for vehicle repairs caused by a collision with another vehicle or stationary object.
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Comprehensive insurance
: Pays for the costs of non-collision-related damage to your vehicle, like hail, flood damage, theft, vandalism, and more.
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Medical payments (MedPay)
: MedPay supplements your health insurance to help cover hospital bills after an accident. It also includes death benefits.
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Gap insurance:
If you leased or financed a new vehicle and it’s totaled, this insurance pays for the difference between the car’s actual cash value and how much you still owe on the
car loan
—but
purchase it from your insurance company
, not through your dealership.
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Roadside assistance coverage: This is also called
towing and labor coverage
, and it typically provides services like fuel delivery, battery changes, flat tire repair, and more.

Penalties for driving without insurance in Montana

It’s illegal to
drive without car insurance
in most states, and Montana places severe penalties on drivers who are caught driving without car insurance. Drivers face fines, registration suspension, and jail time. Plus, they have to
file an SR-22
for three years.
Here’s a breakdown of the penalties for driving without insurance in Montana: 
Penalty
First offense
Second offense
Third offense
Subsequent offense
Fine
$250 to $500
$350
$500
$500
Registration suspension
None
90 days
180 days
Until proof of insurance is provided
Driver’s license suspension
None
None
None
Until proof of insurance is provided
Reinstatement obligations
$100 fee, plus file an SR-22 for three years
$100 fee, plus file an SR-22 for three years
$100 fee, plus file an SR-22 for three years
Must have the Department of Justice evaluate your case
Jail
Up to ten days
Up to ten days
Up to ten days 
Up to six months

FAQs

Are you required by law to have car insurance if you drive in Montana?

Yes, the state law mandates that every driver in Montana must carry bodily injury liability and property damage liability insurance.

What vehicle insurance is required in Montana?

Montana car insurance laws require drivers to purchase at least $25,000/$50,000 of bodily injury liability per person/per accident and $20,000 of property damage liability.

Is Montana a no-fault state for car accidents?

No, Montana is an “at-fault” or “tort” state, which means that drivers must have liability coverage. This way, you’re covered if you’re injured in an accident caused by another driver.

Does insurance follow the car or the driver in Montana?

Yes, since auto insurance follows the motor vehicle in Montana, the person named in the policy is covered along with any household members and anyone who has permission to drive the car.

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