According to the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles, drivers in Ohio must have liability insurance with personal injury protection to drive any vehicle. Owners of vehicles may not allow an uninsured person to drive their vehicles.
Basic Auto Insurance
According to the Ohio BMV, the basic auto insurance that is required is:
- $25,000 for injury or death of one person
- $50,000 for injury or death of two or more people
- $25,000 for property damage in an accident
This is the absolute minimum that is acceptable within the state. Most insurers have standard and basic policies. Standard policies may cost more but will provide additional benefits such as:
- Collision coverage
- Comprehensive coverage
- Bodily injury liability coverage
- Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage
You may purchase basic auto insurance that meets the state minimum requirements from an insurance company licensed to do business in Ohio.
Required Insurance Documents
It is important to carry your insurance card on you, either the actual paper document or an electronic version on your phone. Ohio law requires that the electronic card actually be generated by the insurance company through its website or app; it cannot be a photo of the card. Ohio drivers should keep a paper card with them when driving out of state because not all states accept electronic cards.
Your Insurance Card
You may need to present the card:
- If a police officer stops you during a spot check
- If you are stopped for a traffic violation
- If you are involved in a crash
- Before a vehicle inspection
- Upon appearance in traffic court
If you don’t present the card, your license will be suspended until you do. If you fail to produce it a second or third time, your license will be suspended for a year, your license plates and registration will be revoked, and you’ll have to pay a fine. You may also have to buy high-risk insurance, which is more costly.
Insurance fraud is taken seriously in Ohio. Insurance fraud occurs anytime you misrepresent something to an insurance company or make a false claim to benefits you’re not entitled to. If you commit insurance fraud, you can face fines and jail time. The amount of the fine and jail time depends upon the amount of the fraud. For example, if the fraud is below $1,000, you face a misdemeanor conviction, which includes up to 12 months in jail. If the fraud is greater than $150,000, you’ll be convicted of a felony and spend up to three years in jail. Fines include administrative and civil penalties. You also could lose your professional license if convicted of fraud.
How to Report Fraud to the State
If you suspect someone you know is committing fraud, you can report it to the state Department of Insurance by filling out an online form, sending an e-mail to ODI.Fraud@insurance.ohio.gov, or phoning 1-800-686-1527. Fraud makes insurance rates higher for everyone, so reporting is important. You can choose to report anonymously.
Cleveland.com: Ohio now allows drivers to carry insurance cards on their phones
Joslyn Law Firm: Cincinnati Insurance Fraud Lawyer
Ohio BMV: Mandatory Insurance
Ohio Department of Insurance: Insurance Fraud
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