Kansas has more miles of roads than all but three other states, says Amanda Horner, a traffic safety specialist with the Office of Highway Safety. That adds up to a lot of views of wide-open plains — and a lot of chances to get into accidents. Insurance isn't just a smart idea in Kansas: it's the law. Read on to find out what the state requires in terms of insurance and road safety.
Kansas Vehicle Insurance Requirements
Kansas drivers generally follow the rules when it comes to insurance: Over 90 percent of all drivers are estimated to have at least the minimum levels of insurance. Kansas is an at-fault state when it comes to auto accidents, which means you'll be responsible for accidents that you cause. State law requires several layers of coverage to protect drivers.
Who Needs Vehicle Insurance in Kansas?
All drivers must provide proof they meet the minimum auto insurance standards in Kansas before the DMV will register a car and issue license plates. It's against Kansas law for a motor vehicle owner to lend an uninsured car to anyone else.
Proof of Insurance
Kansas drivers must provide proof of insurance when registering their vehicles. You'll have to show documentation after an accident or if an officer asks for it.
Minimum Liability Insurance Requirements
Kansas law is unusual in that it requires three different types of insurance, which include:
- $25,000 for injury or death per person
- $50,000 for total injuries or deaths, if multiple people get hurt
- $25,000 for property damage
Personal injury protection (PIP):
- $4,500 per person for medical costs
- $900 per month for a year for disability and loss of income
- $25 per day for in-home services
- $2,000 for funeral, cremation, or burial costs
- $4,500 for rehabilitation
Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage:
- $25,000 per person for injury
- $50,000 for all injuries
Alternatives to insurance
Although some states allow drivers to purchase a sizeable bond in lieu of insurance, there are no alternatives to vehicle insurance in Kansas (that is, unless you have 26 or more cars insured under your name).
However, the Kansas Automobile Insurance Plan can help high-risk drivers obtaining car insurance if at least three insurance companies refuse to issue a policy. Kansas-licensed car insurance agents can provide information on how to apply.
What Happens If You Drive Without Car Insurance in Kansas?
Driving without insurance in Kansas can cost you. And you can also expect to go through these steps to get everything straightened out:
- Visit a DMV office.
- Submit any required documents.
- File an SR22 or proof of insurance.
- Retake the driving skills and knowledge tests, if required by court order.
- Pay a fine (up to $1,000) and a reinstatement fee.
How Much Vehicle Insurance Do You Need in Kansas?
The minimum levels of insurance required by the law may not be enough to cover you in an accident. The Insurance Information Institute says experts recommend you carry liability insurance with a minimum of $100,000 per injury or death and at least $300,000 per accident.
Kansas Lack Vehicle Insurance? 7.2% National Average: 13 % (Source: Insurance Research Council - latest data, 2015)
The Kansas Insurance Department suggests you consider additional types of insurance if you can afford it:
- Collision coverage, which pays for repairs or replacement if your car is damaged in a crash
- Comprehensive insurance, which covers damages caused by something other than a crash, such as fire, theft, or a natural disaster such as a tornado
- Towing and labor
Collision and comprehensive coverage may also be necessary to secure a car loan or lease a vehicle.
For more on the types of insurance you may need, see our MoneyGeek guide to car insurance.
Teen Drivers in Kansas
Teen drivers in Kansas must carry the same minimum auto insurance required of anyone else. To keep costs down, consider asking the insurance company to set a higher deductible on the car, and ask if they offer any discounts for teens with good grades or a clean driving record.
Kansas Car Insurance: The Impact of a Teen Driver
Median annual price change for families with a teen driver on their policy:$1,860 increase This is a difference of 117%.
Average annual premium increase if a teen gets a speeding ticket while driving 11-15 mph over the speed limit:
Discounts for Teens in Kansas
Impact on annual premium with Good Student and Defensive Driving discounts:$283 saved
Compare Premiums of Kansas Providers
Policy costs vary from policy to policy, so shop around. Check out the annual average premiums for a married couple with a 16-year-old teen driver in Kansas:
|Farm Bureau Mutual (IA Group)||$2,102||$4,171||$11,353|
Check Out How Car Choice Affects Kansas Auto Insurance Premiums
Insurers consider sports cars, a type of vehicle associated with speeding, a more risky choice for teens than sedans and minivans. Premium rates reflect it.
Average premium for two 2014
Average premium for two 2008
Town and Country Limiteds
Annual benefit of minivans:
College Students in Kansas
Full-time college students from out of state do not have to obtain a Kansas license or registration. Kansas residents enrolled in an out-of-state school should inform the insurance company if the vehicle will be used in another state for more than 30 days per year.
Kansas Teen Drivers vs. College Age Students
Median annual premium change with a college student vs. high school driver$745 decrease This is a decrease of 20%.
Annual Rates With a College Student in Kansas
Each year, review your policy before it renews to see whether you could get a better rate. Here are the average premiums for a married couple with a 19-year-old college student in Kansas.
|Farm Bureau Mutual (IA Group)||$1,507||$3,265||$8,445|
Surprising Driver Discount for Kansas College Students
You may receive a small break in your family's premium if your college student lives 150+ miles away from home.
Average premium for a 19-year-old male
- $3,390 at home
- $2,856 at school
- $534 in savings
Average premium for a 19-year-old female
- $2,890 at home
- $2,533 at school
- $357 in savings
How Your Car Can Affect Your Insurance Rates in Kansas
Your premium will be significantly lower if your college student drives a minivan than if he or she drives a sports car.
2014 Mustang GTs (2)$3,540
2008 Town and Country Limited minivans (2)$2,618
Annual benefit of minivans
Military Drivers in Kansas
If you're a veteran or active duty military in The Sunflower State, save money on your auto insurance by asking carriers for their military discount. Many companies offer them, and several carriers work only with military personnel and vets, so they may be better attuned to the needs of people living the military life. Discounts are not always automatic; a good driving history is also considered when insurance companies set a premium rate.
Kansas has over 21,000 active-duty military personnel living in the state. Service members who live in Kansas but are deployed elsewhere can renew their vehicle registration online. Kansas will waive the property tax on a vehicle registration if the active duty member's name is on the title along with proof of insurance.
Kansas Service Members:
How the Auto You Choose Affects Your Premium
Rollover crashes are more likely if you have an SUV or pickup, according to the Insurance Information Institute, but a recent model sports car will drive up your premium more than an older model SUV.
Military Drivers: How Premium Ranges Rank by Driver Age and Vehicle
Age Savings for Kansas
Median auto insurance
for service members:
Compare Average Premiums Available to Kansas Military Personnel
When looking for the most affordable car insurance, it pays to do some comparison shopping. Check out the average annual rates you can get in Kansas.
Seniors in Kansas
Kansas law requires insurance discounts for drivers 55 and up who complete an approved safety course. Discounts vary by insurance company but average 10 percent.
Undocumented Workers in Kansas
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, Kansas does not allow driving privileges to unauthorized immigrants. That said, regulation was proposed in 2019 that would permit some form of legal recognition for these drivers.
Ridesharing Insurance in Kansas: Are You Covered?
In line with most states' policies, Kansas approved state regulations on insurance requirements back in 2015. And like those other states, it now requires minimum 50/100/25 coverage while the drivers are not engaged in ridesharing duties and at least $1 million when engaged.
Insurance coverage for ridesharing companies like Uber and Lyft may vary depending on the provider.
Car Accidents: How to File a Claim
In Kansas, you must report any accidents involving injury, death, or at least $1,000 in property damage. The Kansas Insurance Department lists these steps in filing a claim for coverage in an auto accident:
- Contact the insurance company about any accident regardless of fault. Follow up in writing.
- If the other driver is responsible, contact his or her insurance company to file a claim.
- Follow the instructions from the insurance company on how to gather repair estimates and other information.
- Vehicle owners injured in an accident should contact their own insurance companies because in Kansas the No-Fault Personal Injury Protection coverage would apply.
- Keep all records of the accident and written communications from the insurance company.
In Kansas, insurance companies are required to investigate a filed claim within 30 days from when it was reported.
Driver Safety: How Does Kansas Rank?
In 2014, Kansas City and Olathe, Kan. were among the top 10 safest cities to drive, according to the Allstate Best Drivers Report. As a whole, Advocates for Highway & Road Safety give Kansas a yellow "caution" light for road safety, urging the state to adopt an all-rider motorcycle helmet law, do primary enforcement of seat belt laws, and raise the minimum age for a learners' permit to 16 and a full license to 18.
Kansas Driver Safety Ranking
The driver safety table shows the different safety factors that contribute to your state's overall safety rank (in the green box). The overall safety ranking and the National Ranking column scores in each category (including crash fatality rates) are from safest to most dangerous, with 1st being the safest and 51st the least safe.
How did we create the safety rankings?
We created a traffic safety ranking of all US states plus the District of Columbia by combining data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. We looked at fatality rates by distance traveled as well as by population and gave more weight to behaviors that were riskier and preventable (i.e., drunk driving, not using a seat belt), as well as to accidents that involved more than one party (i.e., multi-vehicle).
|Driver Safety Profile||Number of Fatalities||Fatality Rate
The fatality rate is the rate per one billion vehicle miles traveled, except for pedestrian and bicyclist fatality measures, which are per measured per a population of 100,000.
Rankings are in order of safest to least safe. A state with the lowest fatality rate would be the safest, and thus ranked #1.
|Drunk Driving-Related Fatalities||102||3.36||28th|
|Passenger Vehicle Unrestrained Fatalities||146||4.83||37th|
|Unhelmeted Motorcycle Fatalities||18||0.60||24th|
|Multiple Vehicle Fatalities||150||4.97||33rd|
|Total Vehicle Fatalities||350||11.59||32nd|
Sources: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Insurance Institute for Highway Safety
Kansas: Protecting You from Injury on the Road
Drunk driving is a continuing problem that's hard to fix, Horner says. "Kansas is a rural state, so public transportation is limited to cities and urban areas," she says. "People feel like driving is their only option, or maybe they rationalize it and think they're not that drunk or not going very far."
The state is trying to reduce drunk driving through sobriety checkpoints and mandatory ignition interlock devices for anyone convicted of repeat DUI. Kansas has also worked to prevent drunk drivers of the future by reaching out to middle schoolers through a special program called Safety Break.
"We're trying to teach them now what dangerous driving can lead to," Horner says. "It's a lot harder to teach those who are already drinking and driving, and they're not recognizing when they're impaired. We're trying to reach younger people before they even start driving.""
|Mandatory seat belts||Required of all drivers and passengers|
|Child passenger safety||Children 7 and under must ride in an age-appropriate car seat (ages 4 to 7 can be in a booster seat)|
|Driving under the influence (DUI)||For drivers under 21, 0.02 is the legal limit for blood alcohol content (BAC); 0.04 BAC for commercial drivers; 0.08 for all others. Penalties include 48 hours of jail time or 100 hours of community service, fine, and license suspension (30 days) for first offense; penalties increase steeply for multiple convictions|
|Ignition interlock after DUI||Required after any convictions|
|Talking on cell or texting while driving||Cell use banned for all novice drivers (learners permits and intermediate). Statewide ban on texting and driving|
|Protections for young drivers||Partial||Graduated driver's license; six months of restrictions on nighttime driving and the number of non-sibling minors in the car|
|Motorcycle helmet law||Partial||Helmets required for riders under 18|
|Bicycle helmet law||No statewide law|
Car Insurance Resources for Kansas Residents
Can assist you with finding an agent, comparing rates, and filing a complaint against your insurer and other issues.
Useful resources for driving laws, consumer education, teen driver safety, alcohol and more.
Check the status of your driver's license here to determine if it is active or suspended.
Published by the state DMV, this online publication covers driving laws and how to obtain a license.
A yearly report on road safety in Kansas from Advocates for Highway & Auto Safety, an alliance of consumer, public health, and insurance groups.