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Auto Insurance in Washington

The State of Washington currently requires that all drivers be covered under liability auto insurance and that proof of car insurance always be carried within the vehicle at any moment.

If you neglect to maintain Washington auto insurance, you will be charged a minimum of $450. Drivers need to carry proof of coverage at all times and present it to any inquiring law enforcement officer. Providing false insurance information is considered a misdemeanor in the State of Washington. Your insurance company issued card showing that you carry a valid policy should include the following information: the insured driver's name, insurance company name, policy number, effective dates, expiration dates, and a description of the vehicle including year, make and model.

Washington Minimum Liability Coverage

Liability coverage is required by law in the State of Washington. The minimum liability amounts for the State of Washington are as follows:

  • $25,000 bodily injury per person.
  • $50,000 total bodily injury per accident.
  • $10,000 total property damage per accident.

Remember that these are only the minimum requirements set by the state. Experts always advise that drivers get more than the state-mandated minimums, particularly if you have assets you need to protect, since these limits have not kept pace with the skyrocketing costs of car repairs and medical care. Also, getting liability coverage alone will not cover you in case of damage to your own car, so most drivers will want to add collision and comprehensive coverage to their policies.

Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage

Some, not all, states will require that drivers carry UM/UIM, also known as uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. This coverage will protect the driver in the event that an accident occurs and the other party does not have auto insurance.

The State of Washington does not currently require this coverage.

No-Fault Insurance

Washington is a not no-fault state, so no-fault insurance is not required.

Personal Injury Protection (PIP)

PIP is an extension of car insurance available in some U.S. states that covers medical expenses and, in some cases, lost wages and other damage.

The State of Washington current does not require drivers to carry PIP insurance.

Washington SR-22 Requirements

SR-22 is a document that is required to be filed with a state's DMV as proof that the minimum liability coverage for the state is being carried. Not everyone needs an SR-22 filing. SR-22s are typically required for a driver to reinstate their driving privileges after an offense such as a DUI conviction, uninsured auto accident, or driving without proof of insurance.

Washington currently requires an SR-22 filing to reinstate a driver's license.

Washington DUI Laws

For the first DUI offense in the State of Washington, you will face the following maximum penalties:

  • 1 day to 1 year imprisonment or 15 days electronic home monitoring
  • 2 days to 1 year if Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) is above 0.15% or 30 days electronic home monitoring
  • Minimum $865.50 to $5000 fine
  • Minimum $1,120.50 to $5,000 fine if BAC is above 0.15%
  • 90 day license suspension
  • 1 year license suspension if BAC is above 0.15%
  • Ignition interlock (add 60 days if minor under 16 was present in vehicle)
  • SR-22 insurance required
  • Possible substance abuse education

Additional Information on Washington Insurance

For additional information, you can contact the Washington State Office of the Insurance Commissioner at (800) 562-6900 or go to their website at

Read more about the Most Popular Auto Insurance Carriers in WA.