Purchasing car insurance can help keep you legal as an Iowa driver, but there’s more to it than that. Car insurance can also help protect you financially if you’re involved in an accident, your vehicle is damaged, or you damage someone else’s vehicle. Here’s what you need to know about Iowa car insurance.
To legally drive as an Iowa resident, you’re required to have car insurance and meet the following requirements:
Be at least 16 years old
Pass written, vision, and behind-the-wheel tests
Have current registration for your vehicle
The penalties for driving without insurance in Iowa include:
License plate removal
Vehicle towing and impounding expenses
SR-22 insurance requirement
As an Iowa driver, you’re required to carry at least the minimum car insurance coverage limits:
$20,000 for bodily injury liability or death of one person
$40,000 for bodily injury liability or death per accident
$15,000 for property damage liability per accident
$20,000 for uninsured motorist (UM)/underinsured motorist (UIM) bodily injury or death of one person
$40,000 for UM/UIM bodily injury per accident
In Iowa, insurance providers are required to add uninsured motorist (UM)/underinsured motorist (UIM) coverages to your auto insurance policy unless you specifically reject them in writing. UM coverage helps protect you if you’re injured in an accident in which the at-fault driver doesn’t have liability insurance. UIM coverage, meanwhile, applies when you’re injured in an accident in which the at-fault driver has liability insurance, but not enough to pay for your covered expenses.
Absolutely. While carrying the minimum levels of liability insurance can help keep you legal behind the wheel, it still leaves you vulnerable to large out-of-pocket expenses if your own vehicle is damaged, or if the losses related to a covered accident exceed your limits. For additional protection, consider adding these optional coverages to your policy.
Comprehensive coverage can help pay for damages caused by acts of nature or other non-collision events, such as fire, hail storms, falling objects, vandalism, and theft.
Collision coverage can help pay for damage to your vehicle if you’re involved in an accident with another vehicle or stationary object, like a tree or mailbox, no matter who’s at fault.
In Iowa, your comprehensive deductible can't exceed your collision deductible. Also, you need to have collision coverage on your policy in order to purchase comprehensive coverage.
Learn the difference between collision and comprehensive insurance.
Non-owner coverage can help protect you if you’re involved in an accident while driving a vehicle you don’t own. Just be aware it doesn't apply to vehicles owned by members of your household. Only liability coverage is available for this type of policy in Iowa.
Roadside assistance provides 24-hour emergency towing and roadside service if you run out of gas, get a flat tire, lock your keys in your car, or experience a mechanical or electrical failure, such as a dead battery.
If your vehicle is in the shop following a covered loss and you need to rent a vehicle, rental reimbursement coverage can pay up to $40 per day throughout the rental period—up to $1200 total. Please note, this coverage is only available when you have comprehensive and collision coverages.
Check out these additional resources for Iowa drivers:
Contact the IowaDOT to renew your driver’s license, take a practice test, and register your vehicle. You can also check local road conditions and traffic cameras, get updates on major construction projects, and more.
Visit the Iowa Division of Motor Vehicles to renew your commercial license, update your address, order specialty plates, and view your driving record.
If you’re looking for licensed insurance companies and agents in Iowa to help insure your home, rental property, or other important assets, the Iowa Insurance Division (IID) has the resources you need.