The Idaho Financial Responsibility Law states that every motorists driving in the Gem State must carry liability auto insurance with at least 25/50/15 in coverage. Starting May 2015, law enforcement officers will begin using the Online Insurance Verification System (OIVS) to check your insurance status. However, just in case your information hasn’t been updated yet, bring a copy of your insurance ID card with you whenever you hit the road in the Gem State.
|Idaho Required Car Insurance Coverage||ID Required Min. Limits|
|Bodily Injury (BI)||$25,000 per person / $50,000 per accident|
|Property Damage (PD)||$15,000 per accident|
Idaho Car Insurance Minimum Requirements
A liability policy covers you for the bodily harm and property damage you cause to the other person in a crash. In Idaho, your insurer will pay on your behalf up to your policy's limits; the minimum requirements are listed below:
Bodily Injury (BI): whenever you are the more negligent of the two parties in an accident, your BI kicks in to pay the other driver for his or her injuries on your behalf. Specifically, it pays up to $25,000 per injured person’s medical needs, and to a total of $50,000 when there are more than one person injured in the other party. Note that in the event that the other driver’s total medical costs exceed your coverage limits, you will still be responsible of the difference out of your own pocket. Get BI in higher limits if you can afford it.
Property Damage (PD): after an accident you cause, your PD kicks in to pay the other driver for his or her property loss or car repairs. Idaho's laws require all insurers to cover their policyholders up to $15,000 per accident, but you may raise that limit by purchasing higher coverage, such as $25,000 or higher. The availability of higher limits varies by insurer.
Optional Coverage in Idaho
Most insurance agents and government officials will tell you that limits in the minimum insurance policy will not provide enough protection. Liability insurance covers you for the money you owe to the other party whom you have harmed, but there are many other circumstances of an accident that it does not cover. For example, your own vehicle’s repair costs, or when you run into a driver who is illegally driving without insurance. Here are several optional coverages you may find useful, and offered by most licensed Idaho insurers:
Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury (UMBI): when you are hit by an uninsured driver, chances are they do not have the financial means to pay for your medical costs like you do with your insurance policy. The good news is Idaho has one of the lowest rates of accidents caused by uninsured drivers (6.7% in 2012). Nevertheless, the Idaho Insurance Code requires its insurers to offer you UMBI coverage unless you reject it in writing, and it pays for your medical bills in place of the other driver’s policy, if he or she had any.
Underinsured Motorist Bodily Injury (UIMBI): UIMBI comes in handy when your medical expenses exceed the at-fault driver’s BI coverage. Your insurer will pay for the difference up to $25,000 per injured person on your car and $50,000 for the total accident (in a minimum policy).
Physical Damage: having physical damage insurance means your insurer pays for your car repair regardless of fault. It is made up of collision and comprehensive coverages, and each kicks in under different circumstances. In short, collision covers damage caused by any collision type accident – including a car crash – and comprehensive covers most of the rest, such as a hood dented by a fallen branch. There will be a deductible amount for both coverages, which is a portion of the repair costs you need to bear on your own.