If you’ve been keeping your eye on car insurance trends in South Dakota, you might have noticed that rates have steadily increased since 2016, taking a massive 28% jump from 2018 to 2019. However, according to the Insurance Information Institute, South Dakota ranked 4th in the nation for having the cheapest automobile insurance. The average South Dakota driver may have paid $1,708 in 2019 for car insurance, but insurance rates are dependent on a variety of factors. Shopping quotes and comparing car insurance companies can help you lock in the best price possible on your premium.
The Best Cheap Car Insurance in South Dakota for 2020
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- The Best Affordable Car Insurance in South Dakota for 2020
The Best Cheap Car Insurance Companies for SD Drivers in 2020
When searching for the most affordable and top-rated auto insurance in South Dakota, you’ll most likely find yourself faced with five common insurance companies. The below table compares the cost of insurance from five popular insurance companies for the average driver.
Keep in mind that these are averages and insurance is dependent on a variety of factors, so the actual estimates will likely vary from person to person.
Finding the best auto coverage for you will depend on the number of people in your household, your age, location, vehicle type, driving history, credit score and other factors. Teens and seniors are susceptible to higher rates and even your marital status can affect your premium. That’s why MoneyGeek recommends consulting at least three insurance companies to find the best car insurance in South Dakota for you.
The Best Car Insurance Companies in South Dakota for 2020
With hundreds of car insurance companies out there, you may be wondering which is the best. To save you some time, MoneyGeek identified top-rated car insurance companies in South Dakota using a unique scoring system. Taking factors like customer satisfaction, claim rates, affordability and a company’s financial strength into consideration, MoneyGeek provided a score out of 100 for popular car insurance companies. The table below features ratings from reputable sources like J.D. Power and AM Best where the aforementioned factors are all weighted equally.
Market Share by Company
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners reported that State Farm State Farm was the largest insurer in South Dakota in 2019. The other biggest brands in the state are listed below.
Cheapest Car Insurance for Drivers With a DUI in South Dakota
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2018, every 50 minutes a fatal accident occurred due to drinking and driving. In South Dakota, the CDC reports that 2.5% of drivers reported driving after drinking too much, which is more than 0.5% higher than the national average. A DUI can not only negatively impact your insurance rates, but can result in jail time, even for first-time offenders. While every state is different, South Dakota takes DUIs very seriously. First offenders are charged with a Class 1 misdemeanor and all driving privileges are revoked for a minimum of 30 days. The punishment gets worse with repeat offenses. The following table provides an estimate of the insurance premium increase you can expect to see if you find yourself facing a DUI charge in South Dakota.
Getting a DUI doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll be paying an arm and a leg for insurance for the rest of your life. Since your rates could increase for several years, it’s best to shop insurance quotes regularly, maintain a good driving record and follow all DUI conviction requirements set by your state. Once the DUI is off your record, you may want to apply with a new insurance company to get a lower rate.
Cheapest Car Insurance for SD Speeding or Distracted Driving Tickets
Distracted driving causes more than 100 fatalities a year in South Dakota, according to the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA). A speeding or distracted driving ticket can lead to a large increase in insurance rates. If you’re penalized with a reckless driving ticket your rates will rise. The following table provides the average cost of insurance per month for drivers in South Dakota who have a ticket on their record.
There’s no blanket increase in the extra premium you’ll pay if you get a speeding or distracted driving ticket. There’s also not a one-size-fits-all answer to how long it will stay on your record. Often, insurance companies will allow first-time offenders to participate in an online driver’s school to remove points from a record. It’s best to get a complete understanding of the real costs of distracted driving and buckle down on being safe behind the wheel.
Cheapest Car Insurance Companies in SD for Drivers With Bad Credit
You may be wondering how your credit score is linked to your insurance premiums. Insurance companies look at your score and see that it represents your ability to pay your insurance premium on time. South Dakota ranks highly when it comes to credit scores, tieing North Dakota for the second-highest average FICO score in the nation at 727. However, drivers with a poor credit score can expect estimates similar to the following rates.
Poor credit history has been linked to more insurance claims, which is why those with bad credit often get higher premiums — the insurance company sees you as a higher risk to insure. The good news is there is always room to improve your credit score. Once your credit score increases, you can shop for new auto insurance to lower your rates and save money.
Cheapest Car Insurance Companies in South Dakota for Seniors
According to the NHTSA, more than 6,700 senior drivers, ages 65 and older, were involved in fatal auto accidents in 2017. While South Dakota doesn’t have specific laws and regulations in place for senior drivers, they’re subject to the state’s general rules of having to renew their license every five years and pass a vision test with each renewal. The state may also impose driving restrictions on senior drivers. Such restrictions may include no driving at night or only driving within 50 miles of home. Below are a few examples of monthly costs for senior auto insurance rates in South Dakota.
Seniors’ auto insurance rates are affected by a variety of factors, such as driving history, claims history and overall health. Finding cheap car insurance for seniors in South Dakota just requires shopping a variety of quotes to find what fits your driving habits best.
Cheapest Car Insurance for Students
South Dakota Car Insurance: How Much a Teen Driver Will Cost You
Median annual price change for families with a teen driver on their policy:$1,180 INCREASE
This is a difference of 85%.
Like many states, South Dakota has implemented a graduated license plan for teens that has new young drivers following a strict licensing program before becoming fully licensed. Teens can get their first permit at age 14. Then, after 180 days, they can graduate to a Restricted Minor's Permit and then graduate into a full license six months later. Insurance is required from the instruction permit phase, but families can usually get a discount by adding a child to their existing policy.
Teens and student drivers in South Dakota can qualify for a variety of discounts offered to those with good grades, those in college and those who go to school at least 100 miles away from home and don’t regularly use their car.
The truth is that teen drivers simply lack the experience to be good drivers, which makes them a higher risk to insure. According to the Department of Public Safety, drivers under 19 years old account for 16% of drivers involved in crashes in South Dakota. Since parents are typically the ones covering these costs, it’s worth it to talk to your child about safe driving habits. In the meantime, the following table provides a look at the possible rate increases you can expect when you add a teen driver to your policy.
Premium Comparison by Student Type
PREMIUM COMPARISON FOR TWO ADULTS + 16-YEAR-OLD
Town and Country Limiteds$2,487
This is 35% less expensive.
Cheaper premium for college vs. high school drivers
Median premium change with a college student vs. high school driver:
This is a savings of 20%.
Potential discounts for teens in South Dakota
Impact on annual premium with good student and defensive driving discounts:
South Dakota students: a long-distance discount
You may pay a smaller annual family premium if your child lives 150 miles or more away from home.
$2,552 at home
$2,226 at school
$326 IN SAVINGS
$2,261 at home
$2,040 at school
$221 IN SAVINGS
Insurance Rate Information for Military Drivers and Veterans
More than 2,800 active-duty military members currently reside in South Dakota and those members, as well as veterans, qualify for a variety of military discounts on car insurance. While South Dakota requires all drivers to carry insurance, some companies will work exclusively with military and vets. The Department of Public Safety for South Dakota has a variety of resources available for military families to assist with their insurance needs.
Insurance companies in South Dakota will also work with the military who may need to suspend their insurance while on active duty or extend coverage out of state. The below table breaks down the average costs per month of insurance for military members in South Dakota.
Age savings for South Dakota service members
Median auto insurance for service members: $994
Who Needs Car Insurance in South Dakota?
According to the South Dakota Department of Labor and Regulation, anyone with a license or who operates a vehicle must prove financial responsibility for their vehicle, usually in the form of auto insurance. Mandatory coverages include bodily injury liability, property damage liability and uninsured motorist coverage.
Proof of Insurance in South Dakota
If you have insurance, you need to carry your insurance card in the car at all times. Your card should have your insurance company's name, your policy number and the dates of coverage. You'll need to show it when:
- A law enforcement officer asks for it
- You renew your vehicle registration
- You are in a collision
If you don't want to carry a card, South Dakota allows drivers to carry proof of insurance on a smartphone.
Minimum Liability Insurance Requirements in South Dakota
South Dakota requires that you carry certain minimum auto coverage:
- Liability coverage for death or injury to one person: $25,000
- Liability coverage for death or injury to more than one person: $50,000
- Liability coverage for property damage: $25,000
- Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage: 25/50 (in thousands)
The insurance industry and consumer groups recommend that if you can afford it, you should get more liability insurance than the state minimums (See: "How Much Car Insurance Coverage Do I Need?" below).
While most drivers purchase auto insurance to cover their car, the state allows you to prove that you could pay for an accident in lieu of getting insurance through:
- A surety bond with the state
- Self-insurance if you own a business with 26 cars or more for business
- A $50,000 Certificate of Deposit to the state
These alternatives require significant cash reserves. You can also lose that money with one accident, so most people elect insurance.
High-Risk Auto Insurance Program in South Dakota
If you’re considered a high-risk driver as a result of DUIs or reckless driving tickets, then you may have a more difficult time obtaining insurance coverage in South Dakota. If you’re denied insurance because of your driving history, you can seek out the South Dakota Automobile Insurance Plan (AIPSO). As long as you meet the requirements you can receive insurance under the program.
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Car Insurance Requirements in SD: How Much Coverage Do You Need?
What percentage of drivers in South Dakota lack vehicle insurance?
National average: 13%
Source:Insurance Information Institute.
Even though South Dakota has a minimum insurance requirement, those requirements may not fully cover you in the event of an accident. The Insurance Information Institute advises that drivers carry liability coverage of $100,000 per person and $300,000 per accident, which is well above the minimum in the state.
According to the Insurance Information Institute, South Dakota ranks fourth in the country in the number of deer-related accidents, which may be reason enough to carry comprehensive coverage, which extends coverage to non-traffic events that are beyond your control.
South Dakota drivers may also want to consider collision insurance, which pays for auto repairs or replacement if you're in an accident.
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- AIPSO. “South Dakota Automobile Insurance Plan.” Accessed March 08, 2020.
- Department of Public Safety. “South Dakota Crash Statistics.” Accessed March 08, 2020.
- Department of Public Safety. “South Dakota Veteran & Active Duty Drivers.” Accessed March 08, 2020.
- Division of Insurance Consumer Information. “Division of Insurance Consumer Information - Automobile Insurance.” Accessed March 08, 2020.
- Experian. “2019 Consumer Credit Report.” Accessed March 08, 2020.
- Governing. “Military Active-Duty Personnel, Civilians by State.” Accessed March 08, 2020.
- International Insurance Institute. “Facts + Statistics: Alcohol-impaired driving.” Accessed March 08, 2020.
- International Insurance Institute. “Facts + Statistics: Auto insurance.” Accessed March 08, 2020.
- National Association of Insurance Companies. “2018 Market Share Reports for Property/Casualty Groups.” Accessed March 08, 2020.
- Nolo. “South Dakota Driving Laws for Seniors and Older Drivers.” Accessed March 08, 2020.
- South Dakota Legislative Research Center. “Codified Law 32-23-2.” Accessed March 08, 2020.