Last Updated on October 1, 2020 by Andrew Lee
Arkansas requires car insurance for every car owner. It’s essential you’re familiar with the specific requirements as well as the fines and penalties for driving without it. Here are the basics you need to know about Arkansas car insurance and driving safety.
The average cost of car insurance in Arkansas
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) lists the average annual expenditure for car insurance in Arkansas as $703.04.
They broke this figure down to:
$380.78 is the average annual liability insurance expenditure.
$301.90 is the average annual collision insurance expenditure.
$185.45 is the average annual comprehensive insurance expenditure.
Young Drivers in Arkansas
We have found that a young driver in AR can expect to pay an average of:
- $1225 for state minimum coverage
- $2789 for basic full coverag
- $3548 for premium full coverage
Our study shows that if a young driver wants to upgrade from a state minimum coverage to a basic full one, he may pay an average of $1500 difference. If a young driver wants to upgrade to premium instead of a basic full coverage then the difference we found was $750.
Female Drivers in Arkansas
A 35-year-old female driver can expect to pay less of what a young driver would pay. On average women can expect to pay around:
- $468 for state minimum coverage
- $1159 for basic full coverage
- $1530 for premium full coverage
Our study found that for a female adult driver, Geico offered the cheapest rates for all three types of coverages. Our methodology is explained below.
Senior Drivers in Arkansas
In our case study, we used a 68-year-old male driver with 45 years of driving experience. AR provides these average premiums for a senior driver:
- $484 for state minimum coverage
- $1171 for basic full coverage
- $1525 for premium full coverage
A senior can pay as little as $24 per month on car insurance with state minimum coverage in cities like Camden and Warren. For basic full and premium full coverages, Fort Smith with a population of 86,209 (2010, latest data) offers the cheapest monthly rates at $67 and $94 respectively.
Minimum car insurance requirements
Liability insurance is the minimum form of insurance required in Arkansas. It helps you pay for damages or injuries in a car accident that you caused.
Arkansas requires all drivers to carry liability insurance that covers, at a minimum, $25,000/$50,000 for bodily injury/death per accident and $25,000 for property damage per accident.
Many drivers decide to add additional coverage to their car insurance plan. Options available in Arkansas include collision coverage, comprehensive coverage, uninsured motorist coverage, and underinsured motorist coverage.
No-fault car insurance, also known as personal injury protection, is also available in Arkansas. It helps protect you financially, no matter who caused the accident. For example, you’ll still receive benefits even if you’re deemed responsible for the accident.
Violations and penalties
Be prepared to face serious penalties if you get caught driving without the minimum required liability insurance in Arkansas.
You’ll receive a $50 to $250 fine the first time you’re caught driving without car insurance. Your registration will be suspended until you pay the fine, buy the necessary insurance, and pay a $20 registration reinstatement fee.
On your second offense, be prepared to pay a $250 to $500 fine. Your registration will once again be suspended until you pay the fine, buy the necessary insurance, and pay a $20 reinstatement fee.
The third offense is much more serious. You’ll be hit with a $500 to $1,000 fine and possible jail time of up to one year. Your registration will also be suspended until you pay the fine, do the jail time (if applicable), buy the necessary insurance, and pay a $20 reinstatement fee.
Arkansas takes its car insurance laws seriously. The Department of Finance and Administration (DFA) performs monthly checks on all registered cars to verify their owner has the proper car insurance.
Driving safety in Arkansas
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lists the percentage of drivers and front-seat passengers that wear seatbelts in Arkansas as 72%. This can be compared to the national average of 86%.
The National Highway Safety Administration further assesses driving safety in the state with a study related to alcohol-impaired driving fatalities. Out of 470 total driving fatalities, 29% of them, or 136, were caused by alcohol impaired driving.
470 total driving fatalities puts the total vehicle occupant death rate in Arkansas at 13.8 per 100,000 residents, according to another study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
If you live in Arkansas, you’re required by law to have at least liability insurance for all vehicles registered in the state. It’s often a smart idea to invest in more robust coverage such as collision coverage, comprehensive coverage, or even no-fault coverage.