About Missouri insurance requirements, statistics and average premiums…
Like other states in the U.S., Missouri is home to a strong insurance industry. This industry is not allowed to operate without rules, however, and the rules that govern this industry are established and enforced by the Missouri Insurance Department. Insurance companies are compelled to comply with the state’s regulations or risk steep penalties, including losing the ability to do business within the state. Missouri residents are also required to abide by the state’s insurance regulations in order to avoid legal action.
Missouri drivers are required to insure their vehicles, whether they be rented or wholly owned. The Missouri Insurance Department has established regulations to ensure that consumers are not exploited within the auto insurance market. These regulations also establish a minimum level of coverage that consumers can carry for their vehicles. This coverage accounts for: $25,000 per person for bodily injury, $50,000 per accident for bodily injury; and $10,000 per accident for property damage.
The Missouri Insurance Department also requires that drivers carry uninsured motorist coverage, which must account for $25,000 for bodily injury per person and $50,000 for bodily injury per accident. The state does not require drivers to carry personal injury protection (PIP) coverage.
The average cost of auto insurance coverage in Missouri is $1,556 per year.
As in other states, the Missouri Insurance Department does not require property owners to hold insurance coverage for their homes or businesses. Homeowners and business insurance is most often an issue between a consumer or business owner and their financial institutions. The Missouri Insurance Department does regulate the homeowners insurance sector, however, ensuring that claims are honored and rates do not become unruly. Homeowners are encouraged to protect their homes with insurance coverage due to the high frequency of tornados and other natural disasters the state sees each year.
Insurance News Update: Per the Affordable Care Act, all America citizens will be required to carry health insurance policies. The federal law also requires states to build health insurance exchange programs in order to provide citizens with access to affordable policies. Missouri is one of the states that has shown interest in building and operating its own exchange program, but may not be able to due to financial problems. Governor Jay Nixon cites several challenges facing an exchange program that the state may require assistance from the federal government to overcome. If Missouri cannot overcome these challenges, the exchange program may fall into the hands of the federal government entirely.
Of the 5,823,298 people that live in Missouri, approximately 12% do not have any form of health insurance coverage. Many of these consumers rely on state or federal aid in order to get the care they need, but cannot maintain private health insurance policies due to financial concerns.
Missouri Insurance Resources:
Missouri Insurance Commissioner: Chlora Lindley-Myers, Director
Missouri Department of Insurance Website: http://insurance.mo.gov/
Missouri Insurance Licensing Info: http://insurance.mo.gov/agents/
File Insurance Complaint: http://insurance.mo.gov/consumers/complaints/index.php