Massachusetts Car Insurance [Rates + Cheap Coverage Guide]

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MASSACHUSETTS STATISTICS SUMMARYDETAILS
Road Miles in MassachusettsVehicle Miles: 57,552 millions
Miles of Roadway: 36,384
VehiclesRegistered Vehicles: 4,869,170
Motor Vehicle Thefts: 8,260
Population6,902,149
Most Popular Vehicle in MassachusettsToyota RAV4
Uninsured%/Underinsured%6.20%
Total Driving Related DeathsSpeeding Fatalities: 98
DUI Fatalities: 120
Full Coverage Average PremiumsLiability: $606.04
Collision: $388.28
Comprehensive: $134.96
Full Coverage: $1,129.29
Cheapest ProviderState Farm

Whether you live along Massachusetts’ extensive coastline or are nestled within its idyllic countryside, you deserve the best car insurance policy to suit your needs and lifestyle.

But with so many options available, we understand that it can be difficult to distinguish between a great bargain and a lousy deal.

Our guide offers all of the information you need to make an informed decision on your next car insurance policy, letting you spend less time worrying about coverage and more time taking day trips to Cape Cod.

Before you begin, you can compare rates from various providers in Massachusetts by entering your zip code in our FREE online tool.

Table of Contents

Massachusetts Car Insurance Coverage and Rates

Massachusetts has a variety of historical and cultural attractions. Whether you’re visiting the pilgrims’ landing site at Plymouth Rock or the location of the original Dunkin’ Donuts, consider your options in car insurance coverage to ensure your journey goes smoothly.

To ensure you have the optimum insurance coverage, we will help you understand not only the laws on minimum liability coverage in the state but also the premium rates by city, zip code, and demographics.

Buckle up!

– Massachusetts’s Car Culture

As 80 percent of Massachusetts’s population lives in the Greater Boston area, driving around Boston can be challenging at times. The Big Dig might have helped the traffic flow, but it is still tricky for a newcomer to drive around the city that has grown organically around old horse paths. 

As per The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration data, The Codfish State is among the safest in the country when it comes to road fatality rates. However, few of the Bay Staters can be a little impatient and aggressive, and therefore you should drive with patience and caution.

With 94 percent of road deaths in the state occurring on urban roads, urban traffic is more dangerous than rural traffic in Massachusetts. One of the reasons for the high fatality rate on urban roads may be because 62 percent of urban interstates are congested. 

Being patient on the road is even more prudent during winters. The brutal winter season of Massachusetts impacts the car culture as SUVs, and four-wheel drive vehicles are particularly useful.

– Massachusetts’s Minimum Car Insurance Coverage

Type of CoverageAmount
Bodily Injury Liability Coverage$20,000 per one person
$40,000 total per accident
Property Damage Liability Coverage$5,000 per accident
No-Fault Personal Injury Coverage$8,000
Uninsured Motorist Coverage$20,000 per one person
$40,000 per accident

Massachusetts is a no-fault state, which means that your insurance provider will cover your and your passengers’ medical expenses in the event of an accident, regardless of whether the accident was your fault. In the event of serious injuries that result in permanent disfigurement or over $2,000 in medical expenses, it is still possible to file a claim against the driver who is responsible for the accident.

No-fault insurance also covers economic losses if you are injured and miss work, as well as funeral expenses for any deaths in a fatal collision. It does not cover damage to your vehicle in the event of a crash — collision insurance, which pays for repairs incurred in an accident, is not required in Massachusetts.

Comprehensive coverage, which covers non-collision damages to your car (such as extreme weather or hitting an animal), is also not required in Massachusetts.

Part of the required coverage for Massachusetts drivers is uninsured motorist coverage, even though Massachusetts has one of the lowest rates of uninsured drivers in the nation. In the unlikely event that you do get into a collision with an uninsured driver, your policy will ensure that your medical expenses are covered.

– Required Forms of Financial Responsibility in Massachusetts

It is not necessary for drivers to carry proof of insurance in Massachusetts– instead, your registration doubles as proof of insurance.

When registering a vehicle with the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles, you must provide your insurance policy number as well as the names of any family members who are licensed drivers, even if their insurance policies cover them. It is also advisable to include the names of anyone else who may drive your car, even infrequently.

Any changes to your insurance policy must be reported to the RMV as quickly as possible.

The typical penalty for driving without insurance in Massachusetts is a $500 fine and 60-day license suspension for a first offense. Repeat offenses can incur penalties of up to $5,000, a year-long license suspension, and even jail time, so it’s essential to make sure your insurance is current, and your coverage is adequate.

– Premiums as Percentage of Income in Massachusetts

In 2014, Massachusetts had one of the highest average annual per capita disposable income rates in the nation, clocking in at $50,366.

 201420132012
Average (New England)$47,855.00$46,155.50$46,830.83
Massachusetts$50,366.00$48,504.00$49,507.00
National Average$40,859.00$39,192.00$39,473.00

Do you know: Disposable personal income (DPI) is the total amount of income earned after deducting taxes.

The average Massachusetts resident has almost $4,200 each month to either spend or save. The average monthly premium for full coverage auto insurance in Massachusetts is $92, which is about 2.2 percent of the average disposable income.

 201420132012
Average (New England)2.23%2.26%2.17%
Massachusetts2.20%2.23%2.12%
National Average2.40%2.43%2.34%

Because of the high average disposable income, the premium as a percentage of income in Massachusetts is lower than the national and local average.

A penny saved is a penny earned, and minimizing your car insurance bill will let you take more trips to Martha’s Vineyard or start a college fund to send your children to one of Massachusetts’ many prestigious universities.

CalculatorPro

– Core Car Insurance Coverage in Massachusetts

 Average Premium in 2015 (Massachusetts)Average Premium (Massachusetts)Average Premium (National)
Liability$606.04$587.75$516.39
Collision$388.28$358.68$299.73
Comprehensive$134.96$128.92$138.87
Full Coverage$1,129.29$1,075.35$954.99

We gathered data from the most recent study conducted by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners to compile the above table.

Although Massachusetts drivers are only required to have a minimum amount of liability insurance, most drivers would benefit from having additional coverage in the case of collisions or other accidents.

You have to do a cost-benefit analysis to ascertain if saving on the premium is not putting you on substantial financial risk. E.g., in case you have sizeable assets, it might be prudent to safeguard yourself against any future settlement claims.

Boston drivers used to rank as the worst in the country, but they have improved slightly: now they are only the second worst. A policy that covers collision damage may be wise for drivers in the greater Boston area.

Comprehensive car insurance will cover damages incurred by non-collision incidents, such as extreme weather, so you may want to consider upgrading your policy before the next nor’ easter hits.

The best strategy to save money on car insurance is to shop around and get quotes from multiple insurers. Our FREE tool can enable your comparative shopping journey – enter your zip code to get started.

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– Additional Liability Coverage in Massachusetts

A loss ratio shows how much a company spends on claims versus how much money they collect in premiums. A loss ratio of 50 percent means that a company spent $50 on claims for every $100 they collected in insurance premiums.

LOSS RATIO2014 2013 2012 
MAUSMAUSMAUS
Personal Injury Protection64.64%69.41%61.03%74.69%62.37%82.92%

The Massachusetts Commonwealth Automobile Reinsurers (M-CAR) collects data on the different forms of required coverage (bodily injury coverage, uninsured motorist coverage, medical coverage) as one total premium. The above table represents the combined data for these statistics.

– Add-ons, Endorsements, and Riders

In addition to options like collision and comprehensive insurance, there are other add-on coverages to consider in creating your insurance policy, such as:

– Premium Rates by Demographics in Massachusetts

Unlike most other states, car insurance rates in Massachusetts do not differ for men and women. The gender parity is because car insurance companies are not allowed to factor gender into their rate calculations. However, other demographic information, such as age and location, can affect your rate.

Keep reading to see how rates differ across demographic lines for major carriers.

– Demographic and Insurance Carrier

CompanyMarried 35-year old femaleMarried 35-year old maleMarried 60-year old femaleMarried 60-year old maleSingle 17-year old femaleSingle 17-year old maleSingle 25-year old femaleSingle 25-year old male
Allstate Insurance$2,272.30$2,272.30$2,272.30$2,272.30$7,606.60$7,606.60$2,546.37$2,546.37
GEICO Govt Employees$1,982.01$1,982.01$1,834.98$1,834.98$5,423.66$5,423.66$2,048.23$2,048.23
Liberty Mutual$2,879.48$2,879.48$2,508.74$2,508.74$8,950.89$8,950.89$3,012.24$3,012.24
Progressive Direct$2,252.65$2,252.65$2,160.74$2,160.74$8,484.75$8,484.75$2,436.98$2,436.98
State Farm Mutual Auto$954.11$954.11$954.11$954.11$2,583.18$2,583.18$954.11$954.11
Standard Fire Ins Co$2,813.43$2,813.43$2,485.69$2,485.69$5,731.25$5,731.25$3,118.46$3,118.46
USAA CIC$1,424.10$1,424.10$1,402.61$1,402.61$3,320.22$3,320.22$1,573.41$1,573.41

Premiums are higher for teenagers, but insurance companies start to normalize insurance rates with experience.

– Rank by Demographic and Insurance Carrier

CompanyDemographicAverage Annual RateRank
Liberty MutualSingle 17-year old female$8,950.891
Liberty MutualSingle 17-year old male$8,950.891
Progressive DirectSingle 17-year old female$8,484.753
Progressive DirectSingle 17-year old male$8,484.753
Allstate InsuranceSingle 17-year old female$7,606.605
Allstate InsuranceSingle 17-year old male$7,606.605
Standard Fire Ins CoSingle 17-year old female$5,731.257
Standard Fire Ins CoSingle 17-year old male$5,731.257
GEICO Govt EmployeesSingle 17-year old female$5,423.669
GEICO Govt EmployeesSingle 17-year old male$5,423.669
USAA CICSingle 17-year old female$3,320.2211
USAA CICSingle 17-year old male$3,320.2211
Standard Fire Ins CoSingle 25-year old female$3,118.4613
Standard Fire Ins CoSingle 25-year old male$3,118.4613
Liberty MutualSingle 25-year old female$3,012.2415
Liberty MutualSingle 25-year old male$3,012.2415
Liberty MutualMarried 35-year old female$2,879.4817
Liberty MutualMarried 35-year old male$2,879.4817
Standard Fire Ins CoMarried 35-year old female$2,813.4319
Standard Fire Ins CoMarried 35-year old male$2,813.4319
State Farm Mutual AutoSingle 17-year old female$2,583.1821
State Farm Mutual AutoSingle 17-year old male$2,583.1821
Allstate InsuranceSingle 25-year old female$2,546.3723
Allstate InsuranceSingle 25-year old male$2,546.3723
Liberty MutualMarried 60-year old female$2,508.7425
Liberty MutualMarried 60-year old male$2,508.7425
Standard Fire Ins CoMarried 60-year old female$2,485.6927
Standard Fire Ins CoMarried 60-year old male$2,485.6927
Progressive DirectSingle 25-year old female$2,436.9829
Progressive DirectSingle 25-year old male$2,436.9829
Allstate InsuranceMarried 35-year old female$2,272.3031
Allstate InsuranceMarried 35-year old male$2,272.3031
Allstate InsuranceMarried 60-year old female$2,272.3031
Allstate InsuranceMarried 60-year old male$2,272.3031
Progressive DirectMarried 35-year old female$2,252.6535
Progressive DirectMarried 35-year old male$2,252.6535
Progressive DirectMarried 60-year old female$2,160.7437
Progressive DirectMarried 60-year old male$2,160.7437
GEICO Govt EmployeesSingle 25-year old female$2,048.2339
GEICO Govt EmployeesSingle 25-year old male$2,048.2339
GEICO Govt EmployeesMarried 35-year old female$1,982.0141
GEICO Govt EmployeesMarried 35-year old male$1,982.0141
GEICO Govt EmployeesMarried 60-year old female$1,834.9843
GEICO Govt EmployeesMarried 60-year old male$1,834.9843
USAA CICSingle 25-year old female$1,573.4145
USAA CICSingle 25-year old male$1,573.4145
USAA CICMarried 35-year old female$1,424.1047
USAA CICMarried 35-year old male$1,424.1047
USAA CICMarried 60-year old female$1,402.6149
USAA CICMarried 60-year old male$1,402.6149
State Farm Mutual AutoMarried 35-year old female$954.1151
State Farm Mutual AutoMarried 35-year old male$954.1151
State Farm Mutual AutoMarried 60-year old female$954.1151
State Farm Mutual AutoMarried 60-year old male$954.1151
State Farm Mutual AutoSingle 25-year old female$954.1151
State Farm Mutual AutoSingle 25-year old male$954.1151

You can save on premium rates by shopping around irrespective of your age. E.g., for a 17-year-old driver, purchasing insurance from State Farm instead of Liberty Mutual can potentially save more than $6,000.

– Highest and Lowest Rates in Massachusetts by Zip Code

Most Expensive Zip CodesAnnual AverageLeast Expensive Zip CodesAnnual Average
02119$5,333.7901370$2,458.33
02120$5,333.7901267$2,455.41
02121$5,307.0301026$2,454.99
02122$5,194.0401225$2,452.70
02124$5,194.0401349$2,448.40
02125$5,194.0401351$2,448.40
02126$4,932.1201376$2,448.40
02137$4,875.7501337$2,446.65
02301$4,786.0901366$2,445.46
02302$4,786.0901367$2,441.98
02150$4,784.0501220$2,440.33
02151$4,690.5801330$2,434.92
02136$4,593.5502642$2,426.81
02149$4,536.6702631$2,426.70
01901$4,407.0601342$2,419.45
01902$4,407.0601373$2,419.45
01904$4,407.0601344$2,416.96
01905$4,407.0601354$2,406.50
02148$4,371.7201360$2,398.18
02368$4,356.1302643$2,395.53
02131$4,353.8102653$2,395.53
02128$4,228.1202633$2,382.38
02129$4,228.1202650$2,382.38
02152$4,155.3102554$2,378.90
02187$4,139.6002564$2,378.90

– Most Expensive/Least Expensive Rates in Massachusetts by City

Most Expensive CitiesAnnual Average CostLeast Expensive CitiesAnnual Average Cost
Mattapan$4,932.12Nantucket$2,378.90
Readville$4,875.75Siasconset$2,378.90
Brockton$4,786.09Chatham$2,382.38
Chelsea$4,784.05North Chatham$2,382.38
Revere$4,690.58East Orleans$2,395.53
Hyde Park$4,593.55Orleans$2,395.53
Everett$4,536.67Northfield$2,398.18
Lynn$4,407.06Gill$2,406.50
Malden$4,371.72Erving$2,416.96
Randolph$4,356.13Deerfield$2,419.45
Roslindale$4,353.81South Deerfield$2,419.45
Charlestown$4,228.12Brewster$2,426.70
Winthrop$4,155.31Eastham$2,426.81
Milton Village$4,139.60Ashfield$2,434.92
Springfield$4,027.19Adams$2,440.33
Boston$4,022.15Rowe$2,441.98
Indian Orchard$3,995.20Petersham$2,445.46
Lawrence$3,943.76Bernardston$2,446.65
Worcester$3,901.71Millers Falls$2,448.40
Jamaica Plain$3,894.59Montague$2,448.40
Saugus$3,860.14Turners Falls$2,448.40
Fall River$3,841.69Cheshire$2,452.70
Stoughton$3,809.42Cummington$2,454.99
New Bedford$3,790.43Williamstown$2,455.41
Medford$3,747.70Buckland$2,458.33

Massachusetts Car Insurance Companies

With so many available options for car insurance providers, having more choices may seem more like a confusing roadblock than an advantage.

Given the choices, how should you choose your insurance provider?

The decision should include not only the premium cost but also the financial health of the insurer and their claim resettlement process. Since insurance is supposed to help you during the time of financial distress, your insurer should be able to meet future claim obligations.

We can help you with the decision! Keep reading to find out which providers in Massachusetts have the best ratings, most complaints, and more.

– The 10 Largest Massachusetts Car Insurance Companies’ Financial Ratings

A.M. Best has ranked these providers to give an idea about the financial strength. A high score in A.M. Best means they are more likely to work with your needs and pay customer claims.

Financial ratings are important because many of us may not have the time or training to analyze the financial statements of insurance companies to figure out if it has the financial standing to service our claim in the future.

 A.M. Best RatingLoss Ratio
Mapfre Insurance GroupA66.64%
Liberty Mutual GroupA54.01%
GEICOA++69.56%
Safety GroupA+61.11%
Arbella Insurance GroupA-57.89%
Plymouth Rock Insurance GroupA-62.97%
Progressive GroupA++61.95%
Metropolitan GroupA56.44%
USAA GroupA++68.42%
The Hanover Insurance GroupA59.73%

– Customer Satisfaction Ratings of Car Insurance Companies in Massachusetts

Financial ratings are but one piece of the puzzle in deciding the insurance provider. The other major part is the current customer review that provides important subjective insights on issues such as quality of service, response time, claim settlement process, customer care service, and much more.

To enable our understanding of customer satisfaction, we leveraged J.D. Power customer satisfaction ratings, a globally reputed name in automotive review and rating.

JD Power Car Insurance New England Study

As per the 2018 J.D. Power U.S. Auto Insurance Study, Amica Mutual, State Farm, and Allstate are the best-rated car insurance companies in the New England region.

– Massachusetts Car Insurance Companies with the MOST Customer Complaints

We have compiled information based on which Massachusetts car insurance companies have received the most customer complaints in the last year. Additionally, each company’s market share is listed, allowing you to compare each company’s rate of complaints with their relative size overall.

Company NameComplaints in 2015Market Share in MA
Commerce Insurance Company9224.24%
Government Employees Insurance Company466.31%
Liberty Mutual Insurance Company448.82%
Safety Insurance Company339.79%
Arbella Mutual Insurance Company319.28%
Progressive Direct Insurance Company253.13%
Plymouth Rock Assurance Corporation246.54%
Allstate Insurance Company161.72%
Citizens Insurance Company of America132.88%
Metropolitan Property and Casualty Insurance Company124.54%

– Massachusetts Car Insurance Rates by Provider

CompanyAverageCompared to State AverageState Comparison
Allstate Insurance$3,674.39$603.4116.42%
GEICO Govt Employees$2,822.22-$248.77-8.81%
Liberty Mutual$4,337.84$1,266.8529.20%
Progressive Direct$3,833.78$762.7919.90%
State Farm Mutual Auto$1,361.37-$1,709.61-125.58%
Standard Fire Ins Co$3,537.21$466.2213.18%
USAA CIC$1,930.09-$1,140.90-59.11%

State Farm is the cheapest major insurance provider in Massachusetts. However, the rate applicable to you may be different based on your details, e.g., driving record. You can use our FREE tool to get a quote customized to your needs.

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– Premium Rates by Annual Commute in Massachusetts

Row Labels10 miles commute. 6000 annual mileage.25 miles commute. 12000 annual mileage.
Allstate$3,556.25$3,792.54
GEICO$2,769.02$2,875.42
Liberty Mutual$4,168.55$4,507.13
Progressive$3,833.78$3,833.78
State Farm$1,329.38$1,393.36
Travelers$3,369.13$3,705.29
USAA$1,876.77$1,983.4

As we see from the table, many insurance companies offer a marginal discount for low annual miles.

– Premium Rates by Coverage Level in Massachusetts

CompanyLowMediumHigh
Allstate$3,398.46$3,732.43$3,892.29
GEICO$2,600.65$2,872.94$2,993.07
Liberty Mutual$4,057.68$4,394.25$4,561.58
Progressive$3,514.05$3,905.26$4,082.03
State Farm$1,238.07$1,385.33$1,460.72
Travelers$3,194.57$3,608.06$3,808.99
USAA$1,788.95$1,961.62$2,039.69

For higher coverage levels, you can save substantially by opting for State Farm.

– Premium Rates by Credit History in Massachusetts

Insurance providers in Massachusetts are not allowed to factor your credit history into determining annual rates.

– Premium Rates by Driving Record in Massachusetts

CompanyClean recordWith 1 accidentWith 1 DUIWith 1 speeding violation
Allstate$2,843.93$4,239.63$4,770.08$2,843.93
GEICO$2,256.59$3,104.81$3,545.26$2,382.22
Liberty Mutual$3,417.00$4,668.12$5,614.34$3,651.90
Progressive$3,220.36$4,538.99$3,601.17$3,974.60
State Farm$1,077.70$1,467.80$1,745.31$1,154.69
Travelers$2,757.25$3,812.67$4,078.44$3,500.48
USAA$1,373.89$1,783.42$3,026.22$1,536.81

While driving well is rewarding, it has a bonus: a clean record will prevent your premium from increasing dramatically. Some insurance companies will increase your premium rates substantially if you are held for DUI because insurance companies deem this as risky behavior that could lead to a claim in the future.

– The 10 Largest Car Insurance Companies in Massachusetts

CompanyDirect Premiums WrittenLoss RatioMarket Share
Mapfre Insurance Group$1,239,68666.64%23.89%
Liberty Mutual Group$603,97454.01%11.64%
GEICO$578,47669.56%11.15%
Safety Group$454,42461.11%8.76%
Arbella Insurance Group$408,35057.89%7.87%
Plymouth Rock Insurance Group$350,47562.97%6.75%
Progressive Group$218,90161.95%4.22%
Metropolitan Group$214,44356.44%4.13%
USAA Group$157,59368.42%3.04%
The Hanover Insurance Group$154,60759.73%2.98%

– Number of Car Insurance Providers in Massachusetts

Domestic48
Foreign697
Total745

State Laws in Massachusetts

To drive safely and within legal compliance, it’s important to understand Massachusetts car insurance laws, vehicle licensing laws, and rules of the road.

Luckily, we made it easy to stay up-to-date with Massachusetts’ driving laws.

– Car Insurance Laws in Massachusetts

Every state has insurance laws to govern the insurance sector and reduce fraud and malpractices that may occur otherwise.

We understand that while knowing about insurance laws is vital; it might be tedious for you to peruse through state insurance laws. Therefore, we will help you solve the puzzle and provide you all the essential information about insurance laws applicable in The Old Colony State so that you can take an informed decision about your insurance coverage.

– Windshield Coverage Laws in Massachusetts

According to the law in Massachusetts, cracks or whips are not allowed within the area cleared by windshield wipers.

In case of windshield damage, you may be covered under comprehensive coverage (if you opted for it) with zero-deductible replacement or $100 deductible. The glass deductible is separate from the general comprehensive coverage deductible.

If your car in 2004 or newer and has clocked less than 20,000 miles (or 15,000 in case your is older than 2003), you will get an OEM replacement. Otherwise, you will be eligible for replacement of the damaged part with used and reconditioned parts.

– High-Risk Insurance in Massachusetts

Insurers can deny you coverage in the voluntary market if you get convicted for OUI (Operating Under the Influence) or accumulate points by violating traffic rules.

If you were denied insurance in the voluntary marketplace, you could get an insurer assigned to you under The Massachusetts Automobile Insurance Plan (MAIP). The coverage and service provided will be on par with the voluntary market; however, the premium might be on the higher side.

Massachusetts does not require proof of financial responsibility (SR-22). However, it is prudent to carry one for OUI offense in the neighboring states. According to the Massachusetts Automobile Insurance Bureau, it is mandatory for an insurer to release the SR-22 certificate to the insured upon request.

– Automobile Insurance Fraud in Massachusetts

Auto insurance frauds can potentially fall into two buckets: hard frauds or soft frauds. Regardless of type, insurance fraud is a crime in Massachusetts and impacts both companies and consumers. Selecting the cheapest premium without looking at the coverage can potentially leave you without coverage.

Some of the common types of auto insurance fraud are:

Types of Insurance Fraud

You can report insurance fraud to NAIC on its Online Fraud Reporting System or with the Insurance Fraud Bureau of Massachusetts (IFB).

In 2018, IFB received 3,283 referrals of insurance fraud of which automobile insurance frauds amounted to 2,311. Based on the type, complexity, and severity, IFB recommends the case for prosecution to the offices of the United States Attorney, Attorney General, and District Attorneys that may result in indictments and convictions.

– Statute of Limitations in Massachusetts

In the state of Massachusetts, the statute of limitations is three years for personal injury and property damage. It is the period until which you can bring a lawsuit against a third-party in case of an accident.

– Vehicle Licensing Laws in Massachusetts

Is your driver’s license Real ID complaint? Do you know if the state Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) allows license renewal online? State licensing laws can help answer all these questions.

In this section, we look into the relevant licensing laws applicable in Massachusetts that will help you remain compliant.

– REAL ID Compliance in Massachusetts

REAL ID is a federal ID that is required to board a plane or enter federal buildings starting October 2020. Massachusetts is a REAL ID compliant state, and therefore, you have an option to get a REAL ID driver’s license or standard driver’s license. You can check here to see if you require a REAL ID compliant driver’s license.

For REAL ID driver’s license, you need to visit the nearest RMV with additional documentation as online processing is not allowed.

– Penalties for Driving without Insurance in Massachusetts

Driving without insurance in Boston traffic is undoubtedly absurd, considering you will not only attract penalties but can also be financially dangerous in case you cause an accident.

If you are caught driving without insurance in Massachusetts, you will have to face the following penalties:

  • Municipality fine of anywhere between $500 and $5,000
  • Mandatory payment of one year’s premium for the most expensive car insurance based on location and driving record
  • Possible jail time of one year
  • License suspension

Don’t risk driving without insurance. Get quotes from leading insurers by entering your zip code in our FREE tool now.

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– Teen Driving Laws in Massachusetts

Massachusetts has a multi-stage licensing process for teens designed to expose them to complex driving situations gradually.

At age 16, teens can apply for a learner’s permit at a Registry of Motor Vehicles office by submitting proof of identification and passing a 25 question computer-based exam. Lerner’s permit allows a teen driver to practice accompanied by a licensed driver age 21 or older.

At the age of 16 1/2 yearsold, a teen driver can apply for a Junior Operator License (JOL). To obtain the JOL, the teen must have held a learner’s permit for at least six months with a clean driving record. Other requirements for JOL include:

  • State-approved drivers education course (30 hours in classroom learning, 12 hours behind-the-wheel, 6 hours in-car observation)
  • 40 hours of supervised practice driving
  • Parents to attend a two-hour class

After meeting all the above requirements, the teen has to pass a road test to obtain a JOL.

Teens holding a JOL are not allowed to drive with any passenger under the age of 18 and are not allowed to drive unaccompanied between 12:30 a.m. and 5 a.m.

The last stage in the licensing process is the unrestricted driver’s license, which a teen can obtain after having held the JOL for at least 12 months with a clean driving record.

– License Renewal Procedure in Massachusetts

Your driver’s license is issued with a five-year validity in Massachusetts after which you renew it online or in-person. If you choose to renew online, you will not be able to apply for a REAL ID-compliant driver’s license.

You can renew your driver’s license up to two years after expiration. If more than two years have passed, you will have to re-appear for the computer-based exam and road test.

Tip: Visit your nearest RMV office to get a REAL ID-compliant driver’s license before REAL ID comes into effect in October 2020.

– Rules of the Road in Massachusetts

When you are applying for a driver’s license, you must have read about the various laws that a driver needs to observe while driving in the state. We will help you refresh the memory with a quick recap of the essential rules, including speed limits, fault laws, car safety seat requirements, etc.

– Fault vs. No-Fault

Massachusetts follows a no-fault system in which your insurer pays you for your damages in an accident irrespective of fault.

– Seat Belt and Car Seat Laws in Massachusetts

Seat belts are one of the more effective ways to reduce injury in a crash. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), seat belts saved approximately 15,000 lives in 2016 alone.

In Massachusetts, wearing a seat belt is mandatory for the driver and all passengers age 13 and older. Children younger than age seven and less than 57 inches in height must be in a child safety seat. Children taller than 57 inches or 8 years old or older are permitted to use adult seats.

Although the seat belt law is not primary in Massachusetts, there is a $25 fine for the first offense.

– Keep Right and Move Over Laws in Massachusetts

Driving too slowly on the left lane creates a traffic hazard that can result in an accident.

In Massachusetts, you are only allowed on the left lane if you are passing traffic or turning left. Otherwise, you always have to keep right.

Tip: You are only allowed to pass a vehicle on the right if the vehicle being passed is turning left.

Move Over Law: If you are approaching a stationary emergency vehicle, highway maintenance vehicle, or recovery vehicle with flashing lights, you should slow down to a safe speed and if possible, move over to a non-adjacent lane.

– Speed Limits in Massachusetts

Speed limits are designed to keep everyone safe on the road. The speed limits listed below is for your reference, however, please follow the posted speed limits on the road.

Road pr Zone TypeSpeed Limits (mph)
Rural Interstates65
Urban Interstates65
Other Limited Access Roads65
Other Roads55
Safety Zone20
School Zone20
Business District30

– Ridesharing Laws in Massachusetts

In August 2016, Governor Charlie Baker signed An Act Regulating Transportation Network Companies that will help regulate ridesharing companies such as Uber and Lyft. The law changed several aspects of how ridesharing companies will be allowed to operate in the state. Some salient features of the law are:

  • 20 percent surcharge per ride on ride-sharing companies for ten years
  • A background check by the ride-sharing company along with another background check by the state Department of Public Utilities
  • Companies to get $1 million in liability insurance coverage for its drivers while they are on route

USAA and Liberty Mutual are allowed to provide insurance coverage for rideshare drivers in Massachusetts.

– Automation on the Road in Massachusetts

Massachusetts does not allow self-driving cars to ply on public roads. However, in 2018, 15 cities and towns in Massachusetts signed a Memorandum of Understanding that allows for the testing of autonomous cars. But the caveat is that during testing, the law requires an operator to be present in the vehicle.

– Safety Laws in Massachusetts

Distracted driving due to the consumption of controlled substance or using a mobile handset can have serious consequences on the road. The law has mandated strict punishment to curb such behavior. Let us look at some salient provisions in Massachusetts.

– DUI Laws in Massachusetts

Driving under the influence of alcohol is not the only reason to be charged under DUI (driving under the influence) or OUI (operating under the influence) indictment. Driving under the influence of drugs or other controlled substance is also a crime and carries the same punishment as those associated with an alcohol charge.

If you are found guilty of operating a motor vehicle on a public road under the influence of a drug or alcohol, you may be subjected to the following sanctions and penalties:

OffenseFineImprisonmentLicense SuspensionOther
First$500-$5,000Maximum two and half yearsThree monthsLicense suspension is 3 years for drivers under 21
Second$600-$10,000Maximum two and half yearsThree years
Third (felony)$1,000-$15,000Minimum 180 days and max two and a half yearsFive Years
Fourth (felony)$15,000-$25,000Minimum 1 yearLifetime
Fifth (Felony)$2,000-$50,000Minimum 2 yearsLifetime

– Distracted Driving Laws in Massachusetts

While the usage of mobile phones is not illegal in Massachusetts, it will be prudent to drive without distraction on public roads. If you are texting while driving, a police officer can stop you and fine you because texting while driving is illegal in Massachusetts.

Driving in Massachusetts

Several factors impact your premium rate, including vehicular theft and accidents in your region. The data on vehicle thefts, accidents, speeding, etc. might be relevant for you before you decide on your insurance coverage.

– Vehicle Theft in Massachusetts

VehicleModel YearNumber of Thefts
Honda Accord1997530
Honda Civic1998479
Toyota Corolla2015220
Toyota Camry2005208
Dodge Caravan2000204
Nissan Altima2015199
Honda CR-V1999193
Ford Pickup (Full Size)2004148
Jeep Cherokee/Grand Cherokee2000140
Chevrolet Pickup (Full Size)200789

In 2016, Honda’s Accord and Civic were the most stolen vehicles in Massachusetts.

CityMotor Vehicle TheftMotor Vehicles Theft per 1,000 population
Abington110.68
Acton50.21
Acushnet60.57
Adams30.37
Agawam321.11
Amherst110.27
Andover140.39
Arlington180.40
Ashburnham00.00
Ashland40.23
Athol70.60
Attleboro340.77
Auburn181.09
Avon61.33
Ayer30.37
Barnstable200.45
Becket00.00
Bedford00.00
Belchertown50.33
Bellingham171.00
Belmont50.20
Berkley50.75
Berlin00.00
Bernardston20.95
Beverly170.41
Billerica70.16
Blackstone60.66
Bolton00.00
Boston12231.81
Bourne120.61
Boxborough30.57
Boxford00.00
Boylston00.00
Braintree471.25
Brewster10.10
Brimfield20.53
Brockton2802.94
Brookline4100.17
Burlington110.42
Cambridge1191.07
Canton150.65
Carlisle00.00
Carver100.86
Charlton50.37
Chatham10.16
Chelmsford180.51
Chelsea1132.82
Chicopee951.67
Chilmark00.00
Clinton00.00
Cohasset30.35
Concord00.00
Dalton20.30
Danvers200.71
Dartmouth270.78
Dedham361.42
Deerfield20.40
Dennis161.15
Dighton70.94
Douglas91.03
Dover10.17
Dracut240.76
Dudley70.61
Dunstable00.00
Duxbury10.06
East Bridgewater80.56
East Brookfield10.46
East Longmeadow60.37
Eastham20.41
Easthampton50.31
Easton190.79
Edgartown10.23
Egremont00.00
Erving00.00
Everett721.54
Fairhaven120.74
Fall River2372.68
Falmouth351.12
Fitchburg441.09
Framingham540.76
Franklin60.18
Freetown121.30
Gardner4150.74
Georgetown20.23
Gloucester150.50
Goshen10.93
Grafton50.27
Granby20.31
Great Barrington10.15
Greenfield140.80
Groton10.09
Groveland00.00
Hadley40.74
Halifax70.89
Hamilton10.12
Hampden101.91
Hanover20.14
Hanson50.47
Hardwick20.50
Harvard00.00
Harwich70.58
Hatfield10.30
Haverhill821.30
Hingham30.13
Holden30.16
Holliston30.20
Holyoke1293.17
Hopedale20.34
Hopkinton00.00
Hudson30.15
Hull10.10
Ipswich10.07
Kingston110.82
Lakeville60.53
Lancaster20.25
Lawrence5817.21
Lee30.52
Leicester90.79
Lenox20.40
Leominster360.87
Leverett00.00
Lexington20.06
Lincoln00.00
Littleton50.50
Longmeadow130.82
Lowell4013.61
Ludlow271.26
Lunenburg70.61
Lynn2212.39
Lynnfield50.39
Malden1011.65
Manchester-by-the-Sea10.19
Mansfield160.68
Marblehead70.34
Marion20.39
Marlborough230.58
Marshfield100.39
Mashpee40.28
Mattapoisett30.48
Maynard10.09
Medford480.84
Medway00.00
Melrose240.86
Mendon60.99
Merrimac00.00
Methuen791.58
Middleboro251.02
Middleton10.10
Milford220.77
Millbury141.03
Millville20.62
Milton150.55
Monson50.57
Montague20.24
Nahant20.57
Nantucket80.72
Natick140.38
Needham10.03
New Bedford2742.90
Newbury30.43
Newburyport40.22
Newton180.20
Norfolk10.08
North Adams221.67
North Andover70.23
North Attleboro140.48
North Reading40.25
Northampton110.39
Northborough30.20
Northbridge50.30
Northfield00.00
Norton20.10
Norwell30.27
Norwood230.79
Oakham10.52
Orange60.79
Orleans20.34
Oxford80.58
Palmer60.49
Paxton10.21
Peabody430.82
Pelham43.00
Pembroke130.71
Pepperell10.08
Pittsfield320.74
Plainville40.44
Plymouth190.32
Plympton10.34
Princeton00.00
Provincetown41.35
Quincy981.05
Randolph290.86
Raynham261.88
Reading60.23
Rehoboth40.33
Revere1132.11
Rochester10.18
Rockport00.00
Rowley10.16
Rutland40.47
Salem451.05
Salisbury70.74
Sandwich60.30
Saugus311.10
Seekonk120.79
Sharon30.16
Shelburne00.00
Sherborn00.00
Shirley20.27
Shrewsbury140.38
Somerset191.04
Somerville1021.26
South Hadley80.45
Southborough70.70
Southbridge140.83
Southwick70.72
Spencer110.93
Springfield5873.81
Sterling20.25
Stockbridge10.52
Stoneham180.82
Stoughton260.91
Stow00.00
Sturbridge60.63
Sudbury10.05
Sunderland20.55
Sutton40.43
Swampscott60.41
Swansea120.73
Taunton901.59
Templeton50.61
Tewksbury120.39
Tisbury30.73
Topsfield00.00
Townsend30.31
Truro21.00
Tyngsboro30.24
Upton00.00
Wakefield140.52
Wales10.52
Walpole70.28
Waltham290.46
Ware70.71
Wareham261.16
Watertown110.32
Wayland10.07
Webster271.60
Wellesley10.03
Wellfleet31.10
Wenham00.00
West Boylston30.38
West Bridgewater202.82
West Newbury20.44
West Springfield702.44
West Tisbury20.68
Westborough50.26
Westfield200.48
Westford30.12
Westminster50.66
Weston40.33
Westport90.57
Westwood10.06
Weymouth290.52
Whately10.66
Whitman100.67
Wilbraham130.89
Williamsburg00.00
Williamstown10.13
Wilmington130.55
Winchendon111.03
Winchester50.22
Winthrop60.33
Woburn200.50
Worcester5192.81
Wrentham80.69
Yarmouth4180.77

While Boston registered the highest number of vehicle theft in 2016, it was the city of Lawrence that has the most number of vehicle theft per 1,000 residents.

– Road Fatalities in Massachusetts

Several factors impact fatalities on the road ranging from a human error to forces of nature. Let us look at the data to understand the main causes of road fatalities in The Bay State.

– Fatal Crashes by Weather Condition and Light Condition

Weather ConditionDaylightDark, but LightedDarkDawn or DuskOther / UnknownTotal
Normal1335670221282
Rain1015121038
Snow/Sleet042208
Other020002
Unknown321006
TOTAL1467985251336

– Fatalities by County for all Crashes in Massachusetts

 20132014201520162017
Barnstable County1816121814
Berkshire County99121211
Bristol County3640415145
Dukes County11101
Essex County3427233336
Franklin County751158
Hampden County3434304035
Hampshire County7106116
Middlesex County4145486434
Nantucket County00100
Norfolk County2841383133
Plymouth County4650383945
Suffolk County2326303426
Worcester County6750534956

– Traffic Fatalities in Massachusetts

 2008200920102011201220132014201520162017
Rural36353044505037221722
Urban328305317330333300317321370328

– Fatalities by Person Type in Massachusetts

  20132014201520162017
OccupantsPassenger Car152161131166121
Light Truck - Pickup1515142227
Light Truck - Utility3727284150
Light Truck - Van131312127
Light Truck - Other12242
Large Truck43325
Total Occupants222223195250214
Other/Unknown Occupants02522
Bus00010
MotorcyclistsTotal Motorcyclists4247564451
NonoccupantsPedestrian7974797874
Bicyclist and Other Cyclist68121011
Other/Unknown Nonoccupants22250
Total Nonoccupants8784939385
TotalTotal351354344387350

– Fatalities by Crash Type in Massachusetts

 20132014201520162017
Total Fatalities (All Crashes)351354344387350
Single Vehicle235250222250237
Involving a Large Truck3127282728
Involving Speeding89859212698
Involving a Rollover5355516265
Involving a Roadway Departure208208180197186
Involving an Intersection10476749493

– Fatalities Trend for the Top 10 Counties in Massachusetts

 20132014201520162017
Worcester County6750534956
Bristol County3640415145
Plymouth County4650383945
Essex County3427233336
Hampden County3434304035
Middlesex County4145486434
Norfolk County2841383133
Suffolk County2326303426
Barnstable County1816121814
Berkshire County99121211
Top Ten Counties336339325371335
All Other Counties1515191615
All Counties351354344387350

– Fatalities Involving Speeding by County in Massachusetts

 20132014201520162017
Barnstable County45335
Berkshire County25242
Bristol County811111311
Dukes County10000
Essex County6881113
Franklin County30632
Hampden County121452112
Hampshire County24220
Middlesex County12910127
Nantucket County00000
Norfolk County10712813
Plymouth County8981515
Suffolk County5211112
Worcester County1611142316

– Fatalities in Crashes Involving an Alcohol-Impaired Driver by County in Massachusetts

 20132014201520162017
Barnstable County66485
Berkshire County32523
Bristol County1615152317
Dukes County10000
Essex County11106118
Franklin County31233
Hampden County122071914
Hampshire County25300
Middlesex County1214151712
Nantucket County00000
Norfolk County122012129
Plymouth County1722111620
Suffolk County11128129
Worcester County1818172520

– Teen Drinking and Driving in Massachusetts

The Old Colony State is among the safest in the country in terms of teen DUI. As per the data from the FBI Uniform Crime Report, law enforcement arrested only 46 teens for DUI in 2016.

The effect is visible if you look at the alcohol-impaired driving fatalities for drivers under 21, where Massachusetts registered one death per 100,000 population, which is less than the national average of 1.2 deaths per 100,000.

– EMS Response Time in Massachusetts

 Time of Crash to EMS NotificationEMS Notification to EMS ArrivalEMS Arrival at Scene to Hospital ArrivalTime of Crash to Hospital ArrivalTotal Fatal Crashes
Rural3.148.613140.620
Urban3.846.3725.6233.28316

– Transportation in Massachusetts

The Boston rush hour traffic is infamous and rightly so. Inrix recently rated Boston commute as the worst in the country. According to Forbes, an average Boston commuter lost on average 164 hours sitting in rush hour traffic.

– Car Ownership in Massachusetts

Households in Massachusetts prefer to own two cars on average, which is in line with the national average.

Car Ownership by Households in Masachusetts

– Commute Time in Massachusetts

The average commute time of 28.3 minutes in Massachusetts is higher than the national average of 25.5 minutes. However, the more alarming point to note is that a considerable number of Bay Staters commute for 60 minutes or more!

Average Commute time in Massachusetts

– Commuter Transportation in Massachusetts

As per DataUSA, a larger share of commuters in Massachusetts opt to take public transport compared to the national average. Consequently, the share of commuters opting to drive alone to work is less than the national average.

Commute Transportation in Massachusetts

We have also listed down some frequently asked questions around auto insurance for your reference.

FAQs

What is liability coverage for personal injury and property damage?

Liability coverage can safeguard you from the financial implications in case of property damage or bodily injury from an accident where you are at fault.

Bodily injury liability provides cover to a third-party on emergency aid, medical expenses, and funeral expenses. Remember the injury liability will not offer medical coverage for you or your passengers.

Property damage liability provides coverage related to damage to structures and vehicle of a third party in case of an accident. Again, remember property damage liability will not cover the damage to your car because of the crash. You will have to purchase additional collision coverage for coverage that protects your vehicle.

What is the difference between at-fault and no-fault insurance states?

In an at-fault state, insurance companies will first have to determine fault and then pay settlement according to the liability coverage of the at-fault driver.

In a no-fault insurance state, e.g., Massachusetts, your insurer will pay for damages and injuries sustained in accident irrespective of fault. However, if the loss is beyond a certain threshold, a motorist has the option to sue the third party under certain conditions.

What is Personal Injury Protection (PIP)?

Personal Injury Protection is primarily available in no-fault states and provides immediate settlement to first-party claims without determining fault. The process enables faster processing of claim settlement in case of an accident.

What if there’s a lapse in insurance?

It is illegal to keep a registered vehicle without insurance. If you do not plan to drive your car, you should cancel your registration and surrender your number plates.

What is covered by collision and comprehensive auto insurance?

It is optional to purchase collision and comprehensive coverages, while the liability coverage is mandatory in most states. While the liability coverage is meant to protect you against third-party claims, collision and comprehensive is designed to pay for your damages.

Collision: Collision coverage pays for damage to your car as a result of collision or accident.

Comprehensive: Comprehensive coverage pays for damage to your car caused by the following events:

  • Damage by animals
  • Natural disasters
  • Fire
  • Theft
  • Tree or other projectile falling on the vehicle
  • Windshield

We hope this comprehensive guide on Massachusetts Auto Insurance will be able to help you make up your mind on the type of coverage you should opt. You can start your comparative shopping right here. Enter your zip code in our FREE tool to get started.

References:
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  2. https://www.thehartford.com
  3. http://www.tripnet.org
  4. https://www.mass.gov
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  6. https://www.naic.org/
  7. http://www.calculatorpro.com/calculator/insurance-cost-calculator/
  8. https://www.boston.com/cars/commute/2018/08/31/boston-drivers-are-the-worst
  9. https://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/gap-insurance-car-do-you-30132.html
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  21. https://www.ifb.org
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  24. https://www.mass.gov/decision-tree/real-id-real-answers-a-tool-to-help-you-determine-if-you-need-a-real-id
  25. https://www.mass.gov/service-details/tips-for-teen-driving
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  39. https://www.forbes.com/sites/niallmccarthy/2019/02/13/bumpah-to-bumpah-boston-has-the-worst-gridlock-in-the-u-s-infographic/#66d5fdb94bfa
  40. https://datausa.io/profile/geo/massachusetts/#category_transportation

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