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Auto insurance is not mandatory in the Granite State, but it becomes required when you're convicted of certain violations. When required, there are minimum coverage limits every issued policy must meet in order to be valid: liability insurance of 25/50/25, medical payments coverage of at least $1,000, as well as uninsured motorist coverage, also in 25/50/25 limits. Whenever you are responsible for an accident, having insurance will prevent your license and vehicle registration from being suspended.
|New Hampshire Required Car Insurance Coverage||NH Required Min. Limits|
|Bodily Injury (BI)||$25,000 per person / $50,000 per accident|
|Property Damage (PD)||$25,000 per accident|
|Medical Payments (MedPay)||$1,000 per person|
|Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury (UMBI)||$25,000 per person / $50,000 per accident|
New Hampshire Car Insurance Minimum Requirements
If you ever purchase an auto insurance policy, or are required to (see when is auto insurance required in New Hampshire), the Accidents and Financial Responsibility law states that it must include the following coverages at the minimum:
Bodily Injury (BI): BI takes care of your liability when you accidentally hurt someone - who was not in the car with you (third-party) - when you drive in New Hampshire. In the minimum policy, your insurer pays up to at most $25,000 to each injured person in the third-party, and no more than $50,000 in total per accident, on your behalf. Having BI also means your lawyer’s fee will be covered in case the other party decides to sue you.
Property Damage (PD): PD, also activated when you cause an accident, covers the part of your liability that reimburses a third-party for their property loss from the accident. In a minimum policy, your insurer pays up to $25,000 per accident for things like the other driver’s car repair.
Medical Payments (MedPay): you must at least purchase $1,000 coverage for MedPay, which covers your medical costs for your own injuries in an accident, whether or not you have caused it. The coverage also extends to anyone in your family living under the same roof, or passengers in your vehicle. In New Hampshire, you can choose to claim your medical expense due to an accident either from your NH health insurance or your MedPay. Your health insurer may not reject your coverage even if the injuries are due to a motor vehicle accident.
Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury (UMBI): must be the same as your BI, 25/50 at the minimum, or higher, unless you reject excess coverage in writing. To avoid the odds of you facing your own medical bills for injuries caused by an uninsured driver, UMBI provides the coverage that should otherwise be provided by the driver’s insurer, if he or she had any.
Usually, auto insurance is recommended, but not mandatory in New Hampshire. However, if you are ever convicted of the following violations or meet the conditions below, you'll be required to buy car insurance or face suspension of your driver's license and vehicle registration. The policy has to have at least the minimum limits required:
- Driving under the influence of drug or alcohol.
- Committed a hit and run accident.
- Purposefully hurt or kill someone with your vehicle.
- Received your second speeding ticket.
- Received second warnings or tickets for other traffic violations.
When you are required to get auto insurance under the above circumstances, your insurer will file a form called an SR-22. This is also your proof of financial responsibility for the future. You cannot file an SR-22 as an individual driver; SR-22s are only valid if filed by your insurer. After your SR-22 gets filed, you will need to carry auto insurance afteward in order to drive in the Granite State.
Alternative Proof of Financial Responsibility
If you are ever involved in an accident that leads the Department of Safety to demand proof of financial responsibility, you have one alternative to a SR-22 filing: a receipt of deposit from the State Treasurer. You can only get the receipt if you deposit $75,000 in cash or securities, which can be legally purchased by a savings bank, such as a government bond. Nevertheless, an insurance policy is a much more convenient way to prove your financial responsibility.