Pennsylvania drivers have a lot of excellent choices when it comes to auto insurance, and shopping around is important since the state average falls on the high side when compared to the national average.
With low state minimums for required liability coverage, Pennsylvania drivers may need to put in a little more effort to make certain they’re being quoted not just affordable coverage, but also adequate coverage as well.
The Basics of Auto Insurance in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania law places a legal minimum requirement for all drivers in terms of the amount of car insurance they have to carry to be on the road. The legal minimum in the state is one of the lowest nationwide, requiring only $15,000 per person and $30,000 per incident for bodily injury coverage, and a very low $5,000 in property damage liability.
Those numbers can result in some inexpensive quotes for a bare minimum policy that will get you on the road legally, but it will be wholly inadequate in any but the simplest fender-bender (maybe not even then). It is very recommended that you carry higher liability limits.
In addition to the liability limits, Pennsylvania drivers are also required to carry a minimum of $5,000 in medical payments coverage. As a no-fault state, this coverage will kick in to pay for medical bills incurred by a passenger in your car regardless of who is at fault in the accident.
While that is all that is required by state law, you may need further coverage. If you have a loan on your vehicle, your lender will require you to protect their investment by carrying comprehensive coverage and collision coverage. There may also be a limit on how high your deductible can be – check with your lender for the specifics.
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Specifics of Pennsylvania Auto Insurance
Pennsylvania, as mentioned is a no-fault state. This means that regardless of who is found at fault in the accident, there is not an impact on how the insurance companies pay for damages, but it does impact car insurance rates and affect the right to sue.
There are two lawsuit choices that can be made when you buy your insurance policy. A limited tort policy limits the type of lawsuit you can bring in the event that you are not at fault in an accident, which usually results in lower rates. A full tort policy puts no limits on your ability to sue for medical bills, pain, and suffering after an accident.
This may differ from other states’ insurance laws, but it does not impact your choices in terms of insurance companies. All insurers offering policies in the state will make sure they are in compliance with the applicable laws.
To choose the best insurance companies for Pennsylvania drivers, we looked at a few main factors. Rates, of course, are a big consideration, but rates do not mean a lot without a good company to back them.
Paying less does not save you much if the company is not there for you when you need them. When you need an insurance company is typically after a claim, so great claims service also made our list of requirements.
All of the companies we chose have a great reputation for serving Pennsylvania drivers, backed by the top rating systems in the nation. We looked for both regional and national level companies to give a selection of insurers both larger and smaller.
Our Top Picks
These three insurance companies are all great picks for drivers in Pennsylvania; they offer good rates and excellent service.
Pennsylvania grown company Erie Insurance is one of the best choices for insurance in the state, ranking highly across the board in J.D. Power’s 2017 insurance satisfaction studies – an impressive feat for a smaller company up against the big names.
Erie consistently performs well in rate tests and is the name that comes up time and again on the topic of great service in the insurance industry. They are a top value for Pennsylvania drivers with the added bonus of being local.
State Farm offers outstanding coverage and service, and more drivers choose them than any other company in the nation. While a lot of people see them as a pricier choice, State Farm actual performs very well in rate tests – and is one of the more affordable choices for Pennsylvania drivers.
State Farm’s captive agent system gives drivers access to personal service that many find to be an added value, and they also rank well in terms of customer satisfaction on the claims end. Pennsylvanians, for the most part, cannot go wrong with the biggest name in insurance.
With rates on the higher end of the national average, finding a car insurance company to help you save is important – and GEICO will do just that. They are the second largest insurance company in the nation, and they offer some of the best rates around to Pennsylvania drivers with their direct buy approach that cuts out agent commissions.
GEICO also comes with a great reputation and a modern approach to car insurance that will appeal to the on-the-go generation needing access to everything from a mobile app.
Shopping for Car Insurance in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania drivers can get great coverage and great rates with a little comparison shopping, but the first thing to do is to know what kind of coverage you need versus what you are being quoted.
The state minimums are dangerously low, and drivers who select this level of coverage need to be aware that they are taking on a serious financial risk. In a major accident where you are at fault, your responsibility for damages will go beyond those limits very quickly – well beyond. It is a smart choice to carry much higher liability limits.
Bear in mind that many car insurance companies will quote at the legal minimum in order make their rates appear to be a lot lower than the competition. Make sure to look at the quote carefully before you accept anything, and compare apples to apples on every quote, every time.
The Bottom Line
Pennsylvania drivers can get good coverage at a good price if they take the time to make sure they know what they’re buying and compare companies. With low state minimums, make sure you get the liability coverage you need to be truly protected, and choose a company that is going to have your back when you need it most.
For a list of companies that we recommend, visit our Best Insurance Companies page.