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Kansas Car Insurance Laws & State Minimum Coverage Limits

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Eric Stauffer is a former insurance agent and banker turned consumer advocate. His priority is to help educate individuals and families about the different types of insurance they need, and assist them in finding the best...

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UPDATED: Feb 21, 2018

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Kansas State FlagThe state of Kansas requires drivers to carry several types of car insurance in order to be on the road legally. Like most states, drivers must carry a minimum amount of liability insurance. Additionally, Kansas requires Personal Injury Protection (PIP) and coverage for uninsured and underinsured motorists.

Mandatory Coverage

Kansas law ensures that all drivers are responsible for the financial losses that can occur in the event of an accident. In addition, the no-fault law in Kansas requires that you carry Personal Injury Protection coverage. Finally, Kansas also requires that all drivers carry uninsured/underinsure motorist coverage.

Liability Insurance Requirements

Kansas law requires that you carry these minimum limits for bodily injury coverage:

  • Bodily Injury Liability in the amount of $25,000 per person and $50,000 per incident to pay for injuries and fatalities in an accident
  • Property Damage Coverage in the amount of $25,000 to pay for damage to vehicles and other personal property

Personal Injury Protection (PIP)

The state of Kansas mandates that all drivers carry PIP in the following amounts as accident benefits regardless of fault:

  • $4500 per person to cover medical expenses
  • Disability/loss of income in the amount of $900 per month for one year
  • $25 per day for required in-home services
  • $2000 for final expenses in the event of a death, including funeral and cremation services
  • $4500 for rehabilitation costs
  • Survivor benefits of $900 per month for one year and in-home services of $25 per day for one year

Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist

The law requires limits matching the liability coverage amounts of $25,000 per person and $50,000 per incident for bodily injury. This coverage pays for injuries caused by a driver who is either uninsured or whose limits are not sufficient to cover all damages.

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Optional Coverage

In addition to the required coverage, Kansas drivers can choose from a selection of options to enhance their auto insurance policy and increase their protection.

The first option most drivers consider is increasing the liability limits above the legally required minimum. Other options available include:

Kansas No-Fault Insurance Law

Kansas is considered a no-fault insurance state because certain benefits are applied regardless of fault in the accident. Fault is still determined in every accident, and one driver will still be held responsible if they are found to be negligent.

In Kansas, PIP benefits are applied prior to any other coverage kicking in, and are applied from your own insurance policy regardless of who is found to be at fault. Other coverage will apply when these benefits are exhausted.

Drivers in Kansas are still subject to negligence laws and may be sued for damages following an accident – damages that are paid by liability insurance coverage, which is the reason many drivers choose to increase their limits.

Providing Proof of Insurance

Kansas law requires not only that you have insurance on every vehicle registered in the state, but also that you provide evidence of this insurance.

Drivers must present proof of insurance to law enforcement during a traffic stop or at the scene of an accident. Failure to do so will result in a citation. Drivers who are convicted of driving uninsured face the following penalties:

  • Fines of $300-$1000 for the first violation
  • Fines of $800-$2500 for subsequent violations
  • Jail time of up to six months
  • Suspension of vehicle registration with reinstatement fee of $100

Kansas also as a “no pay, no play” law which states that an uninsured motorist involved in a crash, even if they are not at fault, can be barred from collecting certain damages.

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Shopping for Car Insurance in Kansas

Kansas drivers pay below-average rates according to a 2017 Insure.com study of average insurance rates across the nation. Kansas came in at number 34, with an average annual rate of $1192 more than $100 less than the national average.

The Kansas Insurance Department offers drivers several resources to help with handling the task of shopping for car insurance. The Auto Insurance Shopper’s Guide available on the website is printable to allow drivers to use it easily while shopping for and comparing rates. This guide provides sample rates from many different car insurance companies in Kansas and can help drivers determine which companies might be the best fit for their insurance needs.

High-Risk Drivers

Drivers who have problems on their driver record may find themselves classified as high-risk drivers. This means that they represent a greater risk to the car insurance company, and as a result will be charged higher rates. In some cases, a high-risk driver may not qualify for insurance on the voluntary market.

The Kansas Automobile Insurance Plan was designed to make certain that all drivers can obtain insurance, regardless of driving record. Drivers can apply through this plan after being refused coverage by at least 3 companies. They will be assigned to an insurance company, which is required by law to provide a policy. While coverage is guaranteed, the premiums can be quite high.

Teen Drivers in Kansas

Teens in Kansas must go through the Graduated Driver Licensing plan (GDL) in order to obtain a full license. This plan has several stages, each with restrictions and requirements.

Instruction/Learner’s Permit

This permit is available at the age of 14 and allows teens to drive while supervised by an adult driver over the age of 21 in the passenger seat at all times. In order to obtain this permit, the teen must first pass a written test. Additional restrictions are:

  • No additional passengers in the front seat at any time
  • Use of cell phones is strictly prohibited except in an emergency or to report illegal activity

Restricted License

The requirements and restrictions for this license differ based on the age at which the teen applies for the license.

A 15-year-old may obtain a restricted license if:

  • They have completed an approved driver training course
  • They have held a permit for at least 12 months
  • They have completed 25 hours of practice driving time

Restrictions for 15-year-old drivers are:

  • May drive only to and from school, work, or a farm where they are working, unless accompanied by a driver 21 or over
  • May drive only along the most direct route when unsupervised
  • May not have any minor passengers other than siblings
  • May not use a cell phone except in an emergency or to report illegal activity

At 16 years old, teens may apply for a license with fewer restrictions. Teens at 16 will need 50 hours of practice time, with 10 hours at night.

The restrictions for 16-year-olds are:

  • Driving is permitted only between 5 a.m. and 9 p.m. unless accompanied by a supervising driver over 21
  • May drive to and from work or school, school-related activities, or religious activities
  • May have only one passenger other than family who is a minor
  • May not use a cell phone except in an emergency or to report illegal activity

Full License

The restrictions on the driver’s license will remain in force for 6 months or until the teen is 17 years old, whichever comes first. At 17, the teen driver will be free of driving restrictions and have a full license.

All teen drivers must meet the same insurance requirements as any other licensed driver. This is most often accomplished by adding the teen to the policy of a parent or guardian, where they can remain even when away at school until they have established his or her own permanent residence.

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About Eric Stauffer

Author: Eric StaufferI am a former insurance agent and banker turned consumer advocate. My priority is to help educate individuals and families about the different types of insurance they need, and assist them in finding the best place to get it.

2 Comments

  1. In the state of Kansas as long as the parents carry insurance on cars ..is it true kids aka teens don’t need to be on policy cuz the car is already covered by insurance

    Reply
    • Hi Connie,

      Ask your insurance agent. As far as I am aware, the teen needs to be added to the policy in order to be covered. Teens are some of the riskiest drivers for insurance companies to insure, so its unlikely they will provide that elevated risk coverage for free.

      Best,
      Eric Stauffer

      Reply

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