How Much Does Auto Insurance Cost in California?

Compare the best car insurance rates today.

In California, auto insurance is mandatory and mandated by the California Insurance Code. Simply having comprehensive and collision insurance coverage on a vehicle in California is not enough to meet the minimum requirements. All vehicles at a minimum are required to have liability insurance with the following limits:

california car insurance costs

Coverage of a vehicle is reported by the insurance agency to the state of California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). If your policy is canceled by the insurance provider, you must notify the DMV within 45 days of the new policy number and insurance provider.

If you’re planning to cancel your policy, you’re required to contact the DMV first to prevent the registration of the vehicle from being suspended. Should the vehicle no longer be in use on the roadway, the insured can file an Affidavit of Non-Use (ANU) REG 5090 form.

This form allows the insured to cancel the insurance policy. However, ANU does not provide an exception to registration. The registration of the non-­insured vehicle must be renewed in a timely manner.

How Much Does Car Insurance Cost in California?

If you live in California and are looking to determine how much your auto insurance rates should be, we’ve broken down the average costs for a car insurance policy in CA below by your county:

Costs by County:Sedan:SUV:Coupe:Truck:Hybrid:
Alameda$920$808$992$902$858
Alpine$1,154$1,002$1,226$1,106$1,078
Amador$910$800$978$884$850
Butte$858$752$910$826$796
Calaveras$920$806$994$894$858
Colusa$948$820$1,008$900$884
Contra Costa$990$862$1,050$960$924
Del Norte$978$854$1,054$940$916
El Dorado$1,018$884$1,086$968$952
Fresno$984$862$1,050$952$918
Glenn$972$850$1,036$940$906
Humboldt$890$772$958$850$832
Imperial$970$846$1,050$934$908
Inyo$974$850$1,032$926$906
Kern$940$824$1,002$900$874
Kings$922$800$972$874$856
Lake$954$836$1,024$924$890
Lassen$906$788$982$864$850
Los Angeles$948$820$996$884$884
Madera$1,032$894$1,100$980$964
Marin$1,052$914$1,126$1,006$982
Mariposa$996$870$1,078$956$934
Mendocino$930$804$996$878$870
Merced$992$870$1,064$962$924
Modoc$976$846$1,054$930$916
Mono$1,076$944$1,154$1,040$1,000
Monterey$842$732$894$802$786
Napa$1,078$932$1,152$1,030$1,008
Nevada$868$764$938$846$812
Orange$1,020$888$1,068$978$950
Placer$1,012$888$1,072$974$942
Plumas$932$810$1,006$892$872
Riverside$972$842$1,026$926$902
Sacramento$1,104$966$1,158$1,062$1,026
San Benito$946$824$998$910$878
San Bernardino$982$860$1,068$958$918
San Diego$1,028$900$1,090$1,002$960
San Francisco$1,296$1,126$1,378$1,254$1,210
San Joaquin$1,038$912$1,112$1,010$964
San Luis Obispo$880$764$934$834$822
San Mateo$1,050$918$1,104$1,018$976
Santa Barbara$882$766$932$842$820
Santa Clara$982$846$1,038$932$916
Santa Cruz$942$828$996$916$874
Shasta$872$766$924$838$812
Sierra$1,002$868$1,082$954$940
Siskiyou$854$738$918$806$798
Solano$974$848$1,048$934$910
Sonoma$1,010$874$1,074$962$942
Stanislaus$1,044$908$1,120$1,002$974
Sutter$1,086$948$1,148$1,038$1,008
Tehama$862$750$918$818$806
Trinity$1,012$880$1,067$974$952
Tulare$1,022$894$1,088$982$952
Tuolumne$1,066$924$1,142$1,014$996
Ventura$984$854$1,028$940$914
Yolo$1,004$880$1,070$978$932
Yuba$1,010$880$1,082$968$946

Finding Auto Insurance Resources in California

Residents of California have many resources available at their fingertips for finding information on

insurance requirements and help with auto insurance coverage. The California DMV is a good resource to start with when learning about the requirements and regulations surrounding automobile coverage.

If you need financial assistance with obtaining auto insurance, you can fill out an auto insurance application and submit it to the California Low Cost Auto Insurance Program. This program, which is state sponsored, was created to help uninsured low-­income drivers.

Eligibility requirements to enter this program include evaluation of household income, driving record, and the vehicle value at time of purchase.

If you’re having a hard time getting any insurance company to insure you, you can seek assistance from the California Automobile Assigned Risk Plan (CAARP). This plan allows those marked as “assigned risk” by insurance companies because of their poor driving rating to obtain automobile insurance with the help of the CAARP. The CAARP puts drivers in touch with an insurance company that will offer insurance to them even though they are a risk.

The state of California also provides a mediation service to drivers that need help resolving a claim with their insurance company. The California Department of Insurance offers this low cost service to any auto policyholder that has comprehensive and collision coverage and needs a mediator to help negotiate a disputed claim.

Tips to Know About California Auto Insurance

If you’re a driver in California, you have a few ways you can save on auto insurance premiums. These include:

This discount is typically around 20 percent off normal premiums. In order to qualify for the “good driver” discount, you must be licensed for at least three years, have less than one point on your record in a three-year span, and have not been at fault in an accident with s claim of over $1,000.

One of the biggest things drivers in California should be aware of is the legal requirement to carry proof of insurance in the vehicle they are driving at all times. Local and state police officers enforce this law and you can be ticketed and assessed fines for failing to carry proof of insurance. If you have insurance, you may be able to have the fines reduced or dropped by showing proof of insurance in court.

Moving to California: Important Information

If you’re moving to California, you’re required by the DMV to obtain a California driver’s license within 10 days of moving. To obtain a license, an appointment must be made with the local DMV office. You will be required to fill out an application, be fingerprinted, show proof of identity (out-­of-­state license and social security card), take a vision exam, take a written road and sign test, have your photograph taken, and pay a fee.

Out-of-state vehicles must be registered in California within 20 days. To register a vehicle, the following are required:

Understand the Driving Laws in California

California has many driving laws that are unique, and may confuse out-of-state drivers and new residents.

One law that is enforced swiftly is the use of a cellphone while driving. Drivers in California are required to use hands-­free devices, such as a built-­in Bluetooth through the car audio or a Bluetooth earpiece. Texting while driving is also a big no-­no. If you’re caught talking directly on a cell phone or texting while driving, you’ll face hefty fines by law enforcement.

Driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs (DUI) is unlawful in California and the penalties enforced by California law are some of the strictest in the United States. If you’re caught driving under the influence, you risk jail time, fines, and a suspension of your license. Police will conduct field sobriety tests and request a breathalyzer if they suspect a DUI. While a driver is allowed to refuse the breathalyzer in California, anyone previously convicted of a DUI will be issued jail time for refusal.

How to Get Great Rates on California Auto Insurance

Finding an auto insurance quote can seem overwhelming – but insuranceQuotes.com helps you find the best car insurance policy at the best price. Every year, we match 15 million consumers to the nation’s biggest auto insurance companies, including State Farm, Allstate and Liberty Mutual.

insuranceQuotes.com connects you with local and national insurance companies that give you free car insurance estimates by phone or email within minutes. By comparing multiple quotes, you can be sure that you’re getting the best price for car insurance.

insuranceQuotes.com Auto Rate Methodology

Rates are based on one vehicle and one driver who has state minimum coverage with $500 deductibles. The hypothetical driver is 35 years old, female or male, employed, a college graduate, and has good credit. She has no traffic violations, claims, or lapse in coverage. The vehicle is assumed to be a sedan that is garaged on premises, used primarily for commuting, and driven 16,000 miles per year. Rates include commonly available carrier discounts and are estimates and not guaranteed.