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Montana Auto Insurance

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The state of Montana uses a Tort system, which means that whoever is found at fault for causing a car accident is responsible for covering the property damages caused and the eventual medical expenses of the people involved.

Minimum legal requirements

Montana requires that all drivers carry, at minimum, a Liability coverage with 25/50/10 limits:

  • $25,000 in bodily injury liability per injured passenger, but not more than $50,000 for the whole accident;
  • $10,000 to cover property damage.

Average insurance costs in Montana

The average insurance rate in Montana is surprisingly low — Montana residents pay only around $622 per year, which is more than half (almost one third, actually) of the national average of $1,678. Insurance in major cities is, however, close to the national median figure. Coverage costs, for instance, $1,648 in Billings, $1,444 in Helena, $1,371 in Bozeman, $1,747 in Kalispell, $1,621 in Great Falls and $1,407 in Missoula.

About driving and using cellphones

Montana is one of the few states that doesn’t have any cellphone or texting laws. There was a bill proposed by the State Senate in 2011 to prohibit distracted driving, but it didn’t pass. Still, officials recommend that drivers use hands-free devices when engaging in phone conversations and keeping text-based communication down to a bare minimum.

Teenage driving regulations

Montana uses the Graduated Driver License system, a concept meant to accommodate teenage drivers with real-life situations, rather than mere theory and traffic simulators.

Newbie drivers may never drive alone — they must be supervised by a parent or legal guardian at all times. All their passengers must wear seatbelts and, as a consequence, they may not transport more passengers than the number of seatbelts in the car. The provisional license is revoked if the teen commits an alcohol or drug-related offense in the first 12 months.

Kids with more than a year of experience may drive unaccompanied if they are on their way to or from school or work.

Penalties for driving uninsured in Montana

Penalties for driving without insurance in Montana depend on the number of offenses:

  • first offense: a fine between $250 and $500, jail time of up to 10 days;
  • second offense: a fine between $350 and $800, 10 days of jail time, 90 days suspension of your license and registration;
  • third and subsequent offenses: a fine between $500 and $1,000, up to 6 months of jail time, 180 days suspension of your license and registration.
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