Tennessee Insurance FAQs

Certain forms of insurance are mandatory in the state of Tennessee. It is up to you as a driver, boater, and homeowner to carry the correct amounts of required insurance at all times. Auto insurance is especially important, as Tennessee is an at-fault insurance state. This means the driver at fault for a collision will be financially responsible for damages. Keep yourself free from fines, financial strife, and legal penalties with the answers to these frequently asked questions about Tennessee insurance.

What Types of Insurance Do You Need?

All drivers in the state of Tennessee must carry adequate auto insurance before operating a vehicle. The required minimum amounts of insurance are at least $25,000 in personal injury liability per person, $50,000 in personal injury liability per accident, and $15,000 for property damage liability per accident. You have the option of purchasing additional coverage amounts or types if desired, but it is not a requirement. You must carry at least the minimum amounts of auto insurance coverage, as well as proof of insurance, to be in accordance with the law.

Should You Pay for Additional Insurance?

The bare minimum Tennessee auto insurance policy may not be enough to cover damages in a serious car crash. That means you could end up paying for others’ medical bills and property damages out of pocket. Furthermore, it does not cover your damages at all – only those of the other party. If you wish your insurance policy to cover your damages as well, you will need to purchase comprehensive insurance or other additional forms of coverage. You may also want uninsured motorist insurance, collision insurance, medical payment insurance, and/or rental car insurance.

Do You Need Proof of Insurance?

You must provide proof of insurance if a police officer pulls you over for a traffic stop. You must also present proof of insurance after getting into a car accident that causes injuries, deaths, or more than $400 in property damage. Legal proof of insurance includes a paper copy of your insurance identification card, an insurance binder containing your policy, a policy declaration page, or an electronic version of your insurance ID card. Your insurance provider should give you proof of insurance.

What Are the Penalties for Not Having Insurance?

If police catch you driving without adequate car insurance, you could face a Class C misdemeanor criminal charge. Conviction of this crime can remain on your permanent driving record. You may have to pay fines and the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) could suspend your license. Furthermore, the DMV could place a stop on your vehicle that prevents registration renewal until you show proof of insurance. You will need to show proof of insurance by filing an SR-22 form with the Tennessee Department of Safety. Then you will need to reinstate your license before returning to the road.

How Do You File an Insurance Claim?

If you get into a car accident and wish to file a claim with your insurance company or the other driver’s insurance for damages, identify who caused the collision. You may need to call the police to report the accident and get an official investigation of fault. If the other driver caused the crash, contact his/her insurance company and file a claim according to the agent’s directions. Stick to the facts of the crash and do not admit fault. Otherwise, call your own auto insurer to file a claim.

Why Should You Call an Attorney for an Insurance Claim?

Do not say yes to an insurance settlement agreement until you have gotten an estimate of the value of your case from a car accident lawyer. Insurance companies may try to take advantage of you, but a lawyer can protect your best interests. Discussing your crash with an attorney can inform you of your rights after a crash and help you seek damages in special cases such as accidents involving uninsured motorists. A lawyer can answer your insurance questions and help you seek fair recovery.