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Think You Can’t Afford Auto Insurance? Think Again

Before you hit the road this summer, make sure you’re covered

Posted: Jun 29, 2010

SACRAMENTO, CA – The California Department of Insurance (CDI) has a timely reminder for drivers as the weather warms up and Californians take to the road: the State of California offers an affordable insurance program so all qualified motorists can drive with confidence.

“California’s Low Cost Automobile Insurance Program provides you with the liability insurance required by law, so that you and your family are covered for the upcoming travel season,” said Commissioner Steve Poizner. “The economy is tough, but this program is affordable and it may be just right for you. With California’s Low Cost Automobile Insurance Program, you can get where you’re going safely and legally.”

Currently, eighteen percent of California motorists are uninsured. That number is expected to increase as unemployment rises. Many drivers can afford California’s Low Cost Auto Insurance program – a state sponsored program for struggling Californians who have a good driving record – and payment options are available. In many areas of California, the program costs around $400 a year, making it even more affordable.

And it’s easy to qualify. The eligibility requirements include:

• An applicant must be a "good driver" – no more than one at-fault property damage only accident, or one point for a moving violation in the past three years.
• Applicant must be at least 19 years of age or older and a continuously licensed driver for the past three years.
• No at-fault accident involving bodily injury or death in the past three years, and no felony or misdemeanor conviction for a violation of the Vehicle Code.
• Family meets income eligibility limits of $27,075 for a single person, $36,425 for two persons and $55,125 for a family of four.
• The value of an insured vehicle must not exceed $20,000.


While the economic benefits are substantial and more drivers are eligible, the CDI also wants to remind drivers that they need insurance; it’s the law. Driving without insurance can lead to actions such as a suspended license, an impounded car or a fine. It’s not worth the risk.

To learn if you qualify for California’s Low Cost Automobile Insurance Program, visit www.insurance.ca.gov/LOWCOST, or call (866) 60-AUTO-1 (866-602-8861).


The California Low Cost Automobile Insurance Program was established in 1999 as a pilot program in Los Angeles and San Francisco. Senate Bill 20, passed in 2005, authorized the Commissioner to launch the program throughout the state upon his determination of need in each county. Beginning in April 2006, the department began expanding the program statewide. Commissioner Poizner made California’s Low Cost Automobile program available to every county in the state in December 2007.

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