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Cheapest Car Insurance in Montana

“Big Sky Country” describes the wide-open, free-range country of the 48th least densely populated state in the U.S.: Montana. Although over half the state is part of the rolling Northern Plains, some of the mountain ranges in Montana stretch all the way to Alaska. The “Land of the Shining Mountains” gets its name from these majestic hills which attract tourists in the millions each year. Making sure to bundle up for the cold winters is a necessary precaution in this cold, mountainous state. Staying protected on the road is important as well, and this list of Montana’s important car insurance information is’s way of helping protect Montana’s drivers.


From mountains to plains, from snow to sunshine, change is a constant in this state. Changing insurance laws can cause a headache, so here is a list of all the essentials to take the guesswork out of Montana’s car insurance search.

Minimum Requirements for Car Insurance in Montana

  • The Montana Department of Justice requires all Montana drivers to carry Liability Insurance.
  • Liability Coverage minimums:
    • $25,000 per individual to cover bodily injury or death.
    • $50,000 per accident involving bodily injuries or deaths.
    • $10,000 for property damage.

Montana’s Commissioner of Insurance and Securities has published a useful brochure entitled Consumer Guide to Auto Insurance that outlines the state’s insurance information.

New Driver Licensing Requirements:

  • Montana residents must obtain a state driver license within 30 days of residency, and new drivers under the age of 18 must complete the Graduated Driver License (GDL) program. The GDL consists of 3 steps: the Permit Period, the First-Year Restricted License and the Full-Privilege Driver License. The applicant must complete each stage in order to graduate to the next.
  • Prior to beginning the program, applicants age 14 years, 6 months must complete a state-approved Traffic Education Learner’s License (TELL) course.
  • Permit Period: This permit is valid for 1 year. Applicants age 16(or applicants age 15 who have completed a TELL) must pass the vision and written tests to apply. During this period, the following applies:
    • Applicants may only drive with a parent/legal guardian or a licensed driver age 18 or older who has been authorized by the parent/legal guardian.
    • Applicants must complete 50 hours of supervised driving including 10 hours of night driving.
    • Regardless of the applicant’s age, all occupants must wear seat belts.
    • The permit must be held for at least 6 months.
    • The applicant must maintain a clean driving record.
  • First-Year Restricted License: This is a full license with the following restrictions enforced for the first full year:
    • During the first 6 months, unless supervised, the applicant may carry no more than one unrelated passenger who is under the age of 18.
    • After the first 6 months, unless supervised, the applicant may carry no more than 3 unrelated passengers who are under the age of 18.
    • The applicant may not drive between 11 pm and 5 am unless:
      • driving for an emergency
      • driving for farm-related activities
      • driving to and from school, work, church or activities related to each of these
  • Full-Privilege Driver License: Applicants who have held a First-Year Restricted License for 12 months with no violations will have the restriction automatically removed and graduate to the Full-Privilege Driver License.
  • Vision Exam. Each applicant must pass the vision exam with a visual acuity of 20/40 or better with or without corrective lenses. Multiple restrictions can be applied to applicants with worse than 20/40 vision. The applicant’s depth perception and color blindness is also tested during this exam.
  • Written Test. The written test is an evaluation of the applicant’s knowledge regarding traffic rules, regulations, signs and markings.
  • Road Skills Test. The road test evaluates the applicant’s skill in controlling a vehicle both safely and legally. The Montana Department of Justice outlines the requirements and the scoring for the driving test. The test consists of a vehicle inspection and a driving portion.
  • Fees. The following fees apply to a new Montana driver license:
    • Age 14: $35.50, valid for 7 years
    • Age 15: $30.50, valid for 6 years
    • Age 16: $25.50, valid for 5 years
    • Age 17: $20.50, valid for 4 years
    • Age 18: $15.50, valid for 3 years
    • Age 19: $10.50, valid for 2 years
    • Age 20: $5.50, valid for 1 year
    • Ages 21-67: $40.50, valid for 8 years
    • licenses over 67 years of age have varying fees as well, and for more information see the state’s Department of Justice’s Fee Chart.


  • BAC limit: .08 Montana’s Department of Transportation describes the penalties, associated state laws and influencing factors in their publication which can be accessed here. Following is a summary of Montana’s minimum DUI penalties:
  • First Offense:
    • Fine: $300 – $1,000. Involving a passenger under 16 years old: $600 – $2,000
    • Jail: 1 day to 6 months. Passenger under 16 years old: 2 days to 1 year
    • License suspension: 6 months
    • Possible Ignition Interlock Device (IID)
    • Completion of a chemical dependency program
  • Second Offense:
    • Fine: $600 – $1,000. Involving a passenger under 16 years old: $1,200 – $2,000
    • Jail: 7 days to 1 year. Passenger under 16 years old: 14 days to 1 year
    • License suspension: 1 year
    • Possible IID
    • Completion of a chemical dependency program
  • Third Offense:
    • Fine: $1,000 – $5,000. Involving a passenger under 16 years old: $2,000 – $10,000
    • Jail: maximum 30 days to 1 year. Passenger under 16 years old: 60 days to 1 year
    • License suspension: 1 year
    • IID required
  • All jail times are mandatory, may not be suspended and must be served in jail as opposed to house arrest.
  • DUI convictions can permanently impact a driver’s commercial license, even if the offense involved only the driver’s regular license and personal vehicle.
  • DUI conviction penalties can increase with aggravated factors and higher BAC levels.

Texting & Driving Laws

Montana has no restrictions on distracted driving, according to

Unique Laws

One must understand the backstory on many laws to make sense of them. Here are a few of Montana’s with no backstory whatsoever. It is illegal to use a revolving sprinkler to annoy pedestrians walking on the sidewalks. Bombs, grenades and high-caliber weapons are not permitted in city council meetings. And in the state, it is illegal for a married woman to go fishing alone on Sundays!


Best Cheap Car Insurance Quotes for Montana

Yellowstone County Car Insurance

Centered around the intersection of Interstate 90 and Interstate 94 in Billings, Yellowstone County is Montana's most populated county, home an estimated 156,000. It is named for the river that bisects the county from southwest to northeast. The river was named for its yellow cliffs made of sandstone.

The county seat, Billings, is the largest city in the state. It is home to the famous Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument, where Lieutenant Col. Custer died. Points of interest also include the Rimrocks, geological sandstone formations located near the airport, and popular for hiking and climbing.

County Sedan Suv Coupe Truck Hybrid

Missoula County Car Insurance

Home to nearly 110,000 residents in 2010, Missoula County is Montana's second most populated. Interstate 90 runs diagonally through the southern section of the county, which contains five large valleys and two major rivers, the Clark Fork and the Bitterroot.

The largest city and county seat is the City of Missoula, founded in 1860 as a trading post. Windsor Park is a neighborhood within Missoula with streets named in a Harry Potter theme. The neighborhood is often referred to by residents as Potterville. The University of Montana in Missoula was Montana's first university, founded in 1895.

County Sedan Suv Coupe Truck Hybrid

Gallatin County Car Insurance

Located in southern Montana near the northwest corner of Wyoming, Gallatin County is named for the river located there, which was named after U.S. Treasury Secretary Albert Gallatin. The county is bisected by Interstate 90.

The county seat is Bozeman, home of Montana State University. The City of Three Forks is considered the birthplace of the Missouri River, the longest single river in North America. Gallatin County contains a small part of Yellowstone National Park, the first national park to be established in the U.S.

County Sedan Suv Coupe Truck Hybrid

Flathead County Car Insurance

Founded in 1893, Flathead County is home to part of the lake and river of the same name. Formed by glaciers, all are named for the geological formation of a flat, wide valley surrounded by mountains at the head of a deep glacial lake.

Flathead County encompasses part of Glacier National Park, the most visited attraction in the state. It adjoins Waterton Lakes National Park in Canada, creating what is known as the world's first International Peace Park. On a humorous note, Miami-based columnist Dave Barry often cites the Flathead County police blotter as a source for his material. Among notable residents of Flathead County are TV host Maury Povich and golfer Alice Ritzman.

County Sedan Suv Coupe Truck Hybrid

Cascade County Car Insurance

Located in central Montana within the northern Great Plains, Cascade County is named for the falls on the Missouri River. The county encompasses part of the Adel Mountains Volcanic Field, the Rocky Mountains and the Little Belt and Highwood Mountains.

The county seat is Great Falls, named for the scenic waterfalls on the Missouri River located nearby. Cascade County once held the claim to fame of the world's shortest river, the Roe River, which runs 201 feet between Giant Springs and the Missouri River. This was before the Guinness Book dropped the category in 2006. Giant Springs continues its claim as home to the largest freshwater spring in the U.S.

County Sedan Suv Coupe Truck Hybrid

Lewis and Clark County Car Insurance

Named for the famous explorers, Lewis and Clark County is the home of the Montana State capital, Helena. It contains part of the Flathead National Forest on its north section.

Known as the "Queen City of the Rockies," Helena was founded as a camp during the Montana Gold Rush. Since more than $3.6 billion worth of gold was extracted from within the city limits within 20 years, Helena was once of the richest towns in the nation in the mid-1800s, and much of its elaborate Victorian structures remain. Lewis and Clark County is the birthplace of actor Gary Cooper, author Margaret Craven, actors Myrna Loy and Dirk Benedict and singer Nicolette Larson, among numerous other notables.

County Sedan Suv Coupe Truck Hybrid
Lewis And Clark$841.00$704.00$777.00$873.00$925.00

Ravalli County Car Insurance

The southwest Montana County of Ravalli is home to an estimated 41,000. Sandwiched between the Sapphire Mountains to the east and the Bitterroot Mountains to the west, the entire county lies on the Pacific Ocean side of the Continental Divide. The county seat is Hamilton, a town of 4,300.

Ravalli County was home to the reportedly friendly Native American Bitterroot Salish tribe, encountered by the Lewis and Clark expedition in 1805. The town of Stevensville is credited with being the first permanent settlement in the State of Montana. The tiny town of Darby was the filming location for the 1989 movie, "Disorganized Crime."

County Sedan Suv Coupe Truck Hybrid

Silver Bow County Car Insurance

Home to an estimated 35,000, Silver Bow County and its county seat, Butte, merged governments in 1977, forming what is now called Butte-Silver Bow. Separate but within its borders is the town of Walkerville, which operates as a separate municipality.

By land area, Silver Bow is the smallest county in the state. It is also the home of Montana Tech, which houses the MBMG Mineral Museum. Other points of interest include a 90-foot "Our Lady of the Rockies" statue that overlooks Butte from the top of the Continental Divide, along with the World Museum of Mining and the Dumas Brothel.

County Sedan Suv Coupe Truck Hybrid
Silver Bow$957.00$788.00$873.00$1,000.00$1,066.00

Lake County Car Insurance

Encompassing the bulk of Flathead Lake, Lake County stretches southward toward Interstate 90 in western Montana. The population was 28,746 at the 2010 Census and the county seat is Polson on the Flathead Indian Reservation.

Within Lake County are the Ninepipe, Pablo and Swan River national wildlife refuges. The Fort Connah Site, on Route 93 between St. Ignatius and Charlo, was established in 1846 and the last building standing, the storehouse, is said to be the oldest structure in Montana. It was part of the Hudson's Bay Trading Post and is now on the National Register of Historic Places.

County Sedan Suv Coupe Truck Hybrid

Lincoln County Car Insurance

Along Montana's northern border, the mountainous, heavily wooded Lincoln County is home to about 20,000. It was named for President Abraham Lincoln. The county seat is the community of Libby, which as a total area of less than 2 square miles.

The small town of Eureka was once known as the Christmas Tree capital of the world, shipping its evergreens to urban areas for the holiday season. Lincoln County encompasses the lowest point in the state, located on the Kootenai River as it flows into Idaho to the west. Also within the county are parts of the Pacific Northwest National Scenic Trial, Flathead National Forest, Kaniksu National Forest and Kootenai National Forest.

County Sedan Suv Coupe Truck Hybrid

County Sedan Suv Coupe Truck Hybrid
Big Horn$926.00$753.00$826.00$986.00$1,054.00
Deer Lodge$951.00$782.00$867.00$993.00$1,060.00
Golden Valley$966.00$784.00$858.00$1,033.00$1,105.00
Judith Basin$958.00$775.00$848.00$1,026.00$1,098.00
Lewis And Clark$841.00$704.00$777.00$873.00$925.00
Powder River$966.00$784.00$858.00$1,033.00$1,105.00
Silver Bow$957.00$788.00$873.00$1,000.00$1,066.00
Sweet Grass$966.00$784.00$858.00$1,033.00$1,105.00
Yellowstone$930.00$780.00$867.00$954.00$1,011.00 Methodology

Car insurance quotes are for one car and one driver who has state minimum coverage with $500 comprehensive and collision deductibles. The hypothetical driver is 40 years old, female, married, employed, a college graduate, and has good credit. She has no moving violations, accidents, claims, or lapse in coverage. The vehicles are assumed to be garaged on premises, used primarily for commuting, and driven 16,000 miles per year. Car insurance quotes include commonly available discounts and are estimates and not guaranteed.

Average Car Insurance Premiums

Montana’s average auto insurance premiums and average premiums as a percentage of income have made it below the national average. reports the state’s premiums as a percentage of income are slightly below the national average.

Drunk Driving Fatalities

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported a growing number of drunk driving fatalities in 2012, but that has since declined.have occurred in the past several years. The state’s fatalities are still above the national average.

Teen Drinking and Driving

The Center for Disease Control reveals Montana’s teens drink and drive at higher a percentage than their national peers.

Vehicular Theft in Montana

Montana, while far below the national average in auto thefts, saw a slight increase in 2012, but is lower in 2014, according to the FBI.

Cheap Car Insurance understands you work hard for your money so, why spend more on your affordable auto insurance. Here is a list of some of the car insurance discounts that will help keep your hard-earned money in your pockets:

  • Multi-car insurance discount
  • Good student discount
  • Military discount
  • Car safety features discount
  • Anti-theft discount
  • Bundling your auto with home or renters
  • Defensive driving discount
  • Usage or low-mileage discount
  • Senior citizen discount
  • Mature driver discount

Insurance discounts may vary by state so, contact us today to see if you qualify for any of these car insurance discounts!

Driver RatingBest Rate Option
Safe driversState Farm
Young driversState Farm
High-mileage driversState Farm
Drivers with points on recordState Farm
Drivers with a military affiliationUSAA


State Department of Insurance

Montana Commissioner of Securities and Insurance
840 Helena Ave.
Helena, Montana 59601
(800) 332-6148
(406) 444-2040
Get Directions

Department of Transportation

Montana Department of Transportation
2701 Prospect Ave.
Helena, MT 59620-1001
(406) 444-6200
Get Directions

Department of Motor Vehicles

Montana Department of Justice
Motor Vehicle Division
Scott Hart Building, Second Floor
302 N. Roberts
Helena, MT 59620-1430
(406) 444-3933
Get Directions

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