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Cheapest Car Insurance In Tennessee (TN)

The birthplace of the blues, Memphis, is a beacon in Tennessee’s vibrant musical scene. This state has seen great strides with rock and roll, rockabilly, country and all kinds of folk music throughout its long history. Along with a rich musical heritage, “The Volunteer State” holds a proud legacy of patriotism and sacrifice for its country. Residents enjoy monuments and markers scattered throughout the state, reminding them of their strong lineage. Tennessee drivers can find all kinds of attractions in this state of mountains, rivers, forests and farms. Keeping those drivers well-protected, CheapCarInsrance.net simplifies the search for car insurance information with this list of easy-to-understand facts.

Average Car Insurance Premiums and Average Car Insurance Premiums as a Percentage of Income

The national average and Tennessee’s average premiums as a percentage of income have been fluctuating for a number of years. In 2008, census.gov reported that the state’s average of 1.61 percent once again climbed above the nation’s average of 1.57 percent. Tennessee’s 2008 average premium rate of 641 lagged well behind the nation’s rate of 789.

Drunk Driving Fatalities

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s 2012 study revealed Tennessee’s average drunk driving fatalities mirrored the nation’s almost exactly. While following the same trends throughout 2010, 2011 and 2012, the state still remained 3 percent below the national average.

Teen Drinking and Driving

The Center for Disease Control reported that Tennessee’s teen drinking and driving average in 2011 was almost equal to the nation’s. At 9.7 percent, the state stayed just under the national average of 10.1 percent.

Vehicular Theft in Tennessee

In 2012, Tennessee’s auto theft rate dropped by 20 points, bringing it to 201. The FBI reports that number as being 28 points below the nation’s average.

Whether looking to license a new teen driver or discovering DUI facts in the state, driving laws and regulations can be a challenge to wade through. After locating all the important facts and figures regarding Tennessee driving laws, CheapCarInsurance.net has brought them all together here for the Tennessee driver’s convenience.

Tennessee’s Minimum Requirements for Car Insurance

  • All vehicles in Tennessee must be covered by liability insurance., according to the state’s Insurance Division.
  • Liability minimums in Tennessee:
    • $25,000 covers an individual injured or killed in an accident.
    • $50,000 covers an accident where multiple individuals were injured or killed.
    • $15,000 covers an accident where property damaged was incurred.

New Driver Licensing Requirements

  • All drivers in Tennessee must be licensed to operate a vehicle. Tennessee’s Graduated Driver License (GDL) Program is designed to allow young drivers to progress in skill and maturity prior to obtaining a full-unrestricted driver’s license. The program consists of the following steps for drivers ages 15 to under 18.
  • Learner Permit. The applicant must be 15 years old or older, pass the knowledge exam and pass the vision test to qualify for this permit. The applicant must show proof of school enrollment or progress. Restrictions with this permit include:
    • The applicant may only drive with a licensed driver age 21 or older.
    • The applicant is restricted from driving between 10pm and 6am.
  • Intermediate Restricted License. After holding the Learner Permit for at least 180 days, reaching age 16 and passing the skills test, the applicant may apply for this license. The following guidelines apply:
    • The applicant must accumulate 50 hours of driving experience. This includes 10 hours of required night driving.
    • All other restrictions are lifted at this point, but maintaining a clean driving record is the requirement to graduating to the next step.
  • Intermediate Unrestricted License. The driver must be at least 17, have kept the restricted license for at least 1 year, have accumulated less than 6 points (violations) on his/her license, have had no at-fault traffic accidents and have had no more than 2 safety belt violations to apply for this license.
  • Regular Driver’s License. After holding the Intermediate Unrestricted License until turning 18 or passing the GED (whichever occurs first), the license automatically transfers to a regular driver’s license.
  • Vision Screening. Without a visual acuity of at least 20/40 and a peripheral field of vision of at least 140 degrees, the applicant may not pass the vision test without restrictions. Tennessee provides numerous restrictions for applicants with differing acuities and peripherals.
  • Knowledge Test. Tennessee’s Department of Public Safety has posted a practice exam on their website for interested applicants. The information included on the exam is found in the Tennessee Driver’s Manual. The test covers traffic signs and signals, safe driving principles, rules of the road and drugs and alcohol. A 7-day waiting period is required for a failed test.
  • Road Test. Included in the Driver’s Manual is a section listing the items included in both the vehicle inspection and driving portions of this exam. The administrator will ride with the applicant and have him/her demonstrate a number of typical vehicle maneuvers. The waiting period for a failed test is determinate upon the number of points deducted during the failure.
  • Fees. Each applicant must pay the following fees:
    • Learner Permit (under age 18): $10.50
    • Learner Permit (18 or older): $5.50
    • Intermediate Restricted License: $24.50
    • Intermediate Unrestricted License: $2.00
    • Graduating to Class D: $8.00

DUI/DWI Laws

  • BAC limit: .08 The Tennessee Department of Public Safety describes the state’s DUI laws (TCA § 55-10, 57-5), and the department’s website clearly outlines the penalties and reinstatement fees associated with DUI convictions.
  • First Offense:
    • Jail: minimum 48 hours – maximum 11 months, 29 days
    • License revocation: 1 year
    • Fine: $350 to $1,500
    • Alcohol and drug treatment program
    • Ignition Interlock Device (IID): at judge’s discretion (first year cost runs $1,000)
    • Restitution payments
  • Second Offense:
    • Jail: minimum 45 days – maximum 11 months, 29 days
    • License revocation: 2 years with restriction after first year
    • Fine: $600 to $3,500
    • Alcohol and drug treatment program
    • Ignition Interlock Device (IID): at judge’s discretion
    • Restitution payments
    • Possible vehicle forfeiture
  • Third Offense:
    • Jail: minimum 120 days – maximum 11 months, 29 days
    • License revocation: minimum 6 to 10 years. No restriction possible
    • Fine: $1,100 to $10,000
    • Alcohol and drug treatment program
    • Ignition Interlock Device (IID): at judge’s discretion
    • Restitution payments
    • Possible vehicle forfeiture
  • Fourth and subsequent offense(s) will be charged with a felony.

Texting & Driving Laws

Distraction.gov states that Tennessee has put a ban on hands-free and handheld cell phone devices for novice drivers and bus drivers. Texting is banned for every driver.

Unique Laws

Safety is a key to the necessity of laws, and sometimes that means regulating “fun”. Tennessee has had to implement a few of those laws like prohibiting minors from playing pinball. Also, the state has made it illegal to tie oneself to the back of a vehicle while rollerblading down the highway. If one is riding on a scooter with a group of friends, the group must remain in single file at all times. And while a woman drives a car in Memphis, it is required by law that either her husband or another man run in front waving a red flag to warn approaching citizens!

State Department of Insurance

Department of Commerce and Insurance
500 James Robertson Pkwy
Nashville, TN 37243-0565
(615) 741-2176
www.state.tn.us/insurance
Get Directions

Department of Transportation

Tennessee Department of Transportation
505 Deaderick Street
James K. Polk Bldg., Suite 700
Nashville, TN 37243
(615) 741-2848
www.tdot.state.tn.us
Get Directions

Department of Motor Vehicles

Tennessee Department of Revenue
Vehicle Services Division
44 Vantage Way, Suite 160
Nashville, TN 37243-8050
(888) 871-3171
(local residents) (615) 741-3101
www.tn.gov/revenue/vehicle
Get Directions

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  • $1800
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  • $1200
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  • $660
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  • $400
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  • $1200
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  • $2400
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