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Department of Motor Vehicles

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Vehicle Insurance

Under District of Columbia law, motorists who are stopped by the police are required to display their driver license, vehicle registration and proof of insurance. MPD officers enforce this "proof of insurance" law and the civil fine that is attached to this infraction.

The District of Columbia’s Compulsory/No-Fault Motor Vehicle Insurance Act requires every person applying for vehicle registration or a reciprocity sticker in the District to have valid DC vehicle insurance. You must maintain your vehicle insurance as long as your vehicle is registered. If you no longer have or intend to drive your vehicle, do not cancel your vehicle insurance until you return your vehicle tags to DC DMV. If you let your vehicle insurance lapse, you will be fined.

While you have and drive your vehicle, you must maintain minimum, continuous, insurance liability coverage. The required minimums are shown in the table below:

Coverage Minimum
Property Damage Liability $10,000
Third Party Liability $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident
Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident
Uninsured Motorist Property Damage $5,000 subject to $200 deductible

You must show valid proof of DC insurance to register a vehicle or renew a vehicle registration. If your vehicle insurance coverage is terminated for any reason, you must return or surrender your vehicle tags and registration to DC DMV immediately. Failure to surrender tags after termination or cancellation of insurance will result in the assessment of fines and penalties.

Insurance companies are required to notify DC DMV of any insurance cancellations or terminations. When this notification occurs, DC DMV sends the vehicle owner an insurance verification notice to allow the owner or their insurance company to contact to provide proof of insurance, such as coverage with a different insurer.

If you fail to maintain continuous, valid insurance on a vehicle registered in the District, your DC DMV vehicle registration or reciprocity sticker will be suspended. You will be assessed fines that will increase over time. You can pay any fines at a DC DMV service center.

In the case of a non-injury vehicle crash, please complete the Non-Injury Checklist and Guide [PDF] and notify your insurance company. If you are involved in a crash involving an injury, call 911. Do not report any crash to DC DMV.

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