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Car Insurance Regulations in Hawaii

Car insurance regulations in Hawaii require that every motorist be insured. Auto insurance is mandatory for every car and driver. It is therefore important for state residents to be aware of state laws regarding auto insurance so that they can be sure to remain in compliance at all times. Automobile insurance is important for all of us in HI just for the sake of personal and family protection, but it is also important for legal reasons. State drivers are urged to become familiar with auto insurance regulations in the state so that they can work with their insurers to create policies that make sense given their circumstances and comply with state laws.

Importance of HI Car Insurance

There are many reasons why it is important to maintain continuous car insurance coverage as a driver in the state of Hawaii, even in cases like inactive vehicle car insurance. One of them is that proper insurance protection greatly reduces the chance of litigation in the event of an accident. In the vast majority of cases when both drivers are insured, the insurance companies can usually work out a settlement without the insured policy holders having to waste their own time in court.

And of course there is the great financial motivator, the main reason why most of us are willing to pay for our policies. The more coverage you have as a driver, the more protection you have in front of you financially after an accident or other loss claim. Quality policies save us from having to pay out large out of pocket expenses when these things come up. And anyone who has been in an accident recently or had to file a comprehensive claim can attest that these things do come up, probably more often than most of us would care to admit. It is better to be protected and make sure we're covered if something happens.

Hawaii Car Insurance Requirements

Every motorist in Hawaii must have car insurance that meets state standards for coverage. If you have a car that is not insured you must surrender your plates and certificate of registration to the director of finance in the county where you live. And of course, upon surrendering your plates you can no longer legally drive a vehicle. This should only be done if the car is going to be stored or otherwise out of commission and completely off the road for an extended time period.

Hawaii is a no fault state for car insurance, whether it's commercial, non profit group auto insurance, or any other kind of policy. This means that your vehicle insurance company will pay for the expenses related to your injuries and those of passengers as well, up to the limits of your personal injury protection (PIP) policy. Under state law you cannot sue or be sued unless serious injuries are suffered as a result of an accident. No fault only applies to injuries and their resulting medical expenses, so the driver at fault in the accident is still responsible for taking care of the property damage expenses that occur as a result of the collision [1].

Minimum PIP coverage in a HI policy is $10,000 per person in injury benefits that go toward medical and rehabilitation costs. Liability insurance is also required for every driver. Split limit liability policies are used here in Hawaii, with separate limits and deductibles for all three parts. $20,000 per person and $40,000 per accident are the minimum acceptable limits for bodily injury liability, and at least $10,000 in third party property damage coverage is mandatory for each covered driver [1].

Optional Car Insurance in Hawaii

Beyond the foundation of PIP and liability insurance that every driver must include on their policies are other optional areas of coverage we could choose to add to enhance and strengthen our protection. Uninsured and underinsured (UM and UIM) coverage, loss of wages, alternative care coverage, death benefits, and funeral care are all options state drivers could add to their plans, as well as PIP managed care and/or PIP deductible coverage. Insurance companies are required by the state to offer their policy holders UM coverage at a minimum of $20,000 per person, and must do so in writing, although drivers have the right to decline such protection [1].

Drivers may make their insurance protection decisions based on need, economic necessity, or some combination of the two. Every driver's situation is different and each of us comes into our relationship with insurance companies with unique circumstances. For example, some folks finance or lease vehicles and may have to add comprehensive and collision policies to their Hawaii car insurance.

It is wise to get a closer look at the rules surrounding car insurance in our home state. Make sure you know what is expected of you as a driver so that you comply with car insurance regulations in Hawaii.

[1] http://hawaii.gov/dcca/ins/consumer/consumer_information/mvi Retrieved 2010-07-29.

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