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Cheap Car Insurance in Tennessee

Everything You Need to Know About Auto Insurance in Tennessee

People in Tennessee tend to be friendly, with southern charm to spare. There’s a long tradition of stepping up when needed, which is why the state’s nickname is the Volunteer State, so named after 1,500 volunteer soldiers answered the call during the War of 1812.

The roots of country music go deep here, so it’s not unusual to find musicians busking on the street corners. Aside from that, the iconic Grand Ole Opry is in Nashville and visitors and residents alike congregate in the thousands for one of the largest festivals in the world, the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival, held in mid-June in Manchester, TN.

Tennessee is also famous for its barbecue scene and hosts the World Championship Barbecue Cooking Content in Memphis in May. Don’t miss the opportunity to pair up some juicy barbecue ribs with a glass of sweet tea and finish off the meal with a fried pie filled with fruit.

Besides enjoying music and food, you’ll want to explore Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Dollywood, and Elvis Presley’s famous Graceland.

If you move to Tennessee or already live there, be sure you have car insurance, because it is required.

How Much Does Car Insurance in Tennessee Cost? 

Tennessee car insurance rates are lower than the national average. For example, Tennessee drivers pay, on average, $1,429 for full coverage car insurance annually. Across the nation, the average for full coverage is $2,014.

For the basic required liability insurance, Tennesseans pay, on average, $371 annually, while nationwide, the average is $622.

Although drivers in the Volunteer State pay less on average than the rest of the nation, rates have increased in recent years. This is due to higher repair costs, an uptick in serious accidents and a climb in car theft numbers.

You can keep your premium low by maintaining an excellent driving record, choosing a reliable and safe car to drive and taking advantage of discounts. At Acceptance, our friendly agents have many years of experience finding their neighbors low-cost car insurance options.

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What Is the Average Premium for Cheap Full Coverage Car Insurance in TN?

Full coverage in Tennessee comes in at $119 monthly on average. Full coverage consists of the required liability, but adds first-party benefits such as collision and comprehensive. Tennessee is an at-fault state, which means if you cause a wreck, your insurance will pay for the injuries and damages you cause, up to your policy limits. However, liability does not kick in anything toward your own repairs. That’s where collision and comprehensive come in: Whether your vehicle is damaged in a wreck you caused or from something else, such as a hailstorm, this package will pay for the repairs or replacement.

Full coverage is your best option to repair or replace a vehicle, no matter the age and value. There is a deductible with both collision and comprehensive and you can purchase either one separately if you wish.

How Much Does Liability Insurance or Minimum Auto Coverage Insurance Cost in TN?

Those who want to pay the least amount possible may choose the state-required minimum liability which costs, on average, $31 per month. Consisting of bodily injury/death liability and property damage liability, this coverage kicks in to help pay for repairs and medical costs to other parties if you cause an accident – up to your policy limits.

The bodily injury/death component helps pay for medical costs, lost wages, even funerals, if necessary. Property damage helps pay for the repair or replacement costs of the other parties’ property. Keep in mind that this insurance will never pay for your own damages, and anything that isn’t covered by your policy will come out of your pocket.

If you cannot come up with the money, you may be sued, and your assets can be seized. Liability insurance is a cheaper car insurance option, but it comes with risks.

How do Insurance Rates Compare Across Tennessee’s Major Cities

Where you live is a major factor insurer’s use to determine your rates. Those who drive in congested cities may face a higher premium than those who drive on rural roads. Is vehicle crime high in your area? That can impact your rates, as well. Here are some Tennessee cities to compare:

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City Full Coverage Insurance Liability Insurance Coverage
Nashville $117 $33
Gatlinburg $117 $29
Gallatin $108 $30
Lynchburg $113 $27

We use the following methodology to arrive at our average cost: male, age 30, lowest possible legal coverage allowed by Tennessee.

What are Some Car Insurance Discounts in the Volunteer State?

The best car insurance discount you’ll ever receive is for being a good driver. Those who have a clean record can expect up to 20% off their annual premium, depending on the insurer. Other discounts include:

  • Bundling: You’ll get a reward from your insurer in the form of a lower premium for allowing them to carry two or more policies, such as auto and home insurance, under the same company.
  • Low mileage: If you are retired or work from home, you may be able to take advantage of this discount, which rewards you for being on the road less.
  • Defensive Driving Course: Whether online or in person, showing your insurance company you are serious about being a good driver may result in a discount.
  • Demographic: Senior citizens, military, first responders – there are a variety of demographic groups that may be able to cash in on a discount.

Ask your independent neighborhood agent for more information on what discounts are available.

Tennessee Car Insurance Laws

Tennessee is an at-fault state. The state-required coverage is to help pay for injuries and damages you cause. It’s important to never let a day go by without coverage since this can be a reason for higher rates when you do decide to get insurance.

What are Mandatory Vehicle Insurance Requirements in Tennessee?

Mandatory car insurance requirements in Tennessee include:

  • Bodily Injury Coverage per Person: $25,000
  • Bodily Injury Coverage per Accident: $50,000
  • Property Damage Per Accident: $25,000

Even though it isn’t required, consider adding uninsured motorist coverage (UM). This inexpensive add-on will be worth its weight if you are ever involved in a crash caused by an uninsured driver. Check with your local Acceptance agent to make sure you have the right amount of coverage.


Car insurance FAQs

Get answers to common insurance questions

What Happens if You are Caught Driving Without Insurance in TN?

  • Driving without insurance in Tennessee is a serious Class C misdemeanor offense that includes fines of up to $300.
  • You may also have your license and registration suspended until you can show proof of insurance. In many cases, driving without insurance is one of the reasons why SR-22 insurance is needed.
  • This alone can raise your rates significantly since insurers believe an SR-22 designation means you are a high-risk driver.

What Factors Does Tennessee Law Allow in Determining Your Insurance Premiums?

Insurance underwriters use many different factors to determine your policy premium. Many of those factors are unique to you, such as age, gender and driving record, while others, such as zip code, apply also to your neighbors.
Some common factors Tennessee insurers look at include:

  • Age, gender
  • Driving record and claims history
  • Credit score
  • Type of vehicle

Remember, today’s insurers must report any lapses in coverage and new policies to the state DMV. This is one reason it is so important to have continuous coverage. When you try to sign up for a new policy, a coverage lapse in your past may cause your rates to go up significantly.

Car Insurance Glossary

Lean more about terms and definitions that are commonly used in insurance.

Am I Required to Report an Accident in Tennessee to Authorities?

Yes. Tennessee wants you to report any accident that results in death, serious injury or property damage exceeding $50. That’s a low amount when you take into consideration today’s repair costs, so you should expect even a small fender bender to be reportable.
It’s a good idea to have a police report anyway. If you need to dispute the facts of an accident in the future, that could be an invaluable resource.

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What is Driving in Tennessee Like?

Since Tennessee has a moderate climate unless you are visiting the Appalachians in winter, driving there shouldn’t be too affected by weather and geography. The state can see quite a bit of rain and some ice in the winter, but it’s typically a gentle climate with humidity.

How Many Car Accidents Happen in TN?

In 2022, there were 1,315 fatal wrecks in Tennessee. In 2021, there were 1,229 fatal crashes in Tennessee, up from 1,217 in 2020. In 2022, 267 fatal crashes had alcohol-impaired drivers.

How Many Drivers are Uninsured/Underinsured Motorists in TN?

An estimated 24% of all Tennessee drivers are on the road without insurance. In 2019, this put the state as number 3 in the nation with the highest number of uninsured drivers. Only Mississippi and Michigan came in higher. Ask your friendly Acceptance Insurance agent about adding uninsured motorist coverage to your plan: You may be surprised at how cheap it is for the protection it offers.

FAQs About Tennessee Car Insurance

I am a Low-Income Driver. How Can I Find the Cheapest Car Insurance in Tennessee?

There are several paths to take that can decrease your policy cost. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Decrease your limits: You’ll pay less for less coverage. Keep in mind any at-fault crash may end up costing you more money.
  • Raise your deductible: The higher you set your deductible, the lower your payment. Make sure you can come up with cash to cover your deductible, if necessary.
  • Take advantage of discounts: There are many different discounts. Almost everyone qualifies for at least one, if not more.
  • Shop around and compare prices: Shopping around will help you find the lowest possible cost for your car insurance.

Can an Undocumented Worker Get Auto Insurance in Tennessee?

You are not allowed to get a driver’s license in Tennessee unless you are a legal resident. Most insurance companies require you to have a driver’s license to purchase coverage. However, you may be able to find one that will allow you to purchase insurance for a licensed driver.

Is It Possible to Get Car Insurance in Tennessee with a DUI on my Record?

Yes. Some companies specialize in insuring customers who are considered too risky by other insurance companies. Acceptance Insurance is one such company that offers DUI Insurance.

Find Low-Cost Auto Insurance in Tennessee Today!

Our local agents at Acceptance Insurance understand Tennessee car insurance laws and requirements. Our welcoming team will help you find a customized, flexible policy that meets your needs – and your budget. Give us a call at 866-566-0530, check us out online for a quick quote or stop by one of our local Tennessee offices.

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