Marissa Hayes is a technical editor and contributing writer. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history, and she was the editor of the literary magazine, The Bluestone Review.

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Written by Marissa Hayes
Insurance Writer & Expert Marissa Hayes

Dan Walker graduated with a BS in Administrative Management in 2005 and has been working in his family’s insurance agency, FCI Agency, for 15 years. He is licensed as an agent to write property and casualty insurance, including home, auto, umbrella, and dwelling fire insurance. He’s also been featured on sites like

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Reviewed by Daniel Walker
Licensed Car Insurance Agent Daniel Walker

UPDATED: Jun 28, 2022

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Georgia Statistics Summary 
State Population10,519,475
Road MilesTotal in State: 128,134
Vehicle Miles Driven (in millions): 118,107
Driving DeathsSpeeding – 248
Drunk Driving – 366
VehiclesRegistered: 7,937,211
Total Stolen: 26,482
Most Popular VehicleF150
Average Premiums (Annual)Liability – $557.38
Collision – $331.83
Comprehensive – $159.18
Combined Premiums – $1,048.40
Percent of Motorists Uninsured12%
State Rank: 25th
Cheapest ProviderGeico and USAA
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Even though car insurance premiums in Georgia aren’t that much more than the national average, Georgia residents will speak of a different experience because, every year, premiums keep going up.

From 2011 to 2015, rates increased by nearly 15 percent making Georgia rank 4th in the nation as having the largest percent increase out of all states during the same time period.

What non-Georgians don’t know is that the quickly increasing rates are a result of a law passed in 2008 that seriously backfired.

We know how frustrating it can be to live day to day paying high car insurance rates when efforts to elect officials to turn things around result in turn over due to idling and indictments. And what doesn’t help the situation is leading providers in the voluntary market harnessing the power to make the rest of the car insurance companies follow suit.

In our Georgia car insurance guide, we explain the history behind the high rates, the factors that affect premiums, and what to consider about the various companies vying for your business.

Until things get under control in the Commissioner’s office, it’s important for you to shop around for the best deal on car insurance. Use our FREE online tool at the bottom of this page to start comparing car insurance rates in Georgia.

Table of Contents

Georgia Car Insurance Coverage and Rates

Knowing a little history behind the rising car insurance premiums will provide some perspective.

A Georgia law passed in 2008 freed auto insurers from a rigorous pre-approval process when they wanted to jack up rates. Soon after, Allstate, the second-largest provider in Georgia at the time, announced their rates would increase by 25 percent.

At the time the law was passed, former Commissioner of Insurance, Ralph Hudgens, was a lawmaker, and his reasoning for backing the bill was that if we let free-market principles take effect, competition would drive rates down.

It appears the law had the opposite effect.

Hudgens has now left office, and hopes towards change are even more doubtful because the newly elected Commissioner, Jim Beck, was recently charged with mail fraud, wire fraud, and money laundering.

For the time being, Georgia residents may not be able to do much about those in office responsible for making decisions. In the meantime, let us help you to make an informed decision.

Georgia Car Culture

Driving in Georgia can’t possibly be pondered without including a reference to the pop-culture TV show of the ’80s The Dukes of Hazzard. The first five episodes were actually filmed in Covington, Georgia in the fictional Hazzard County.

The 1969 Dodge Charger was the vehicle used in the TV series. During the seven years of the show, almost 300 models were damaged while filming General Lee’s daring stunt jumps. The Charger is still a popular vehicle of today.

Another contribution the state of Georgia makes to the history of cars is being home to one of the largest junkyards. With over 4,000 junked vehicles, Old Car City is a favorite destination among classic car aficionados.

Minimum Car Insurance Requirements in Georgia

Insurance RequiredMinimum Limits: 25/50/25
Bodily Injury Liability Coverage$25,000 per one person
$50,000 per accident
Property Damage Liability Coverage$25,000 minimum
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Every state but New Hampshire requires drivers to carry liability insurance which pays those who are owed compensation for property damage and/or injuries resulting from a car accident that you cause.

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Georgia is an “at-fault” state. Any injuries or desctruction to property you cause in an accident must be paid by your liability coverage.

Even though Georgia requires a minimum amount of liability coverage, it is wise to purchase much more than the minimum. Georgia requires:

  • $25,000 – to cover Injury or death of one person in an accident you caused
  • $50,000 – to cover total injuries or death of more than one person in an accident you caused
  • $25,000 – to cover property damage in an accident you caused

Liability, however, will not cover injuries or property damage you sustain. That is provided by other optional, but important, types of coverage we will explain shortly.

Required Forms of Financial Responsibility in Georgia

Before you can register your vehicle, you must provide proof of insurance to show that you are financially responsible if you cause an accident.

Even though all insurance companies electronically file your proof of insurance with the Georgia Department of Revenue, you still must carry proof of liability coverage in your vehicle.

When you purchase a new vehicle, the state provides 30 days to transfer your coverage.

Premiums as Percentage of Income in Georgia

Though car insurance rates may vary from person to person and income varies from person to person, data published in 2014 assisted our researchers in calculating how much car insurance rates consume the monthly income of Georgia residents.

Our researchers revealed that from 2012 to 2014 the annual percentage of income used for car insurance hovered between 2.78 and 2.87 percent which is about four-tenths of a percent higher than the nationwide percentage. That’s pretty good considering some states like Michigan and Louisiana have experienced percentages approaching four.

In 2014, the average annual per capita disposable income for a Georgia resident was $34,558 and the car insurance annual premium was $991.25.

Disposable income is the income that is left after Georgia residents pay taxes. Most Americans pay bills on a monthly basis, so the math tells us that around $82.60 per month is assigned to car insurance coverage. The remaining monthly income is assigned to rent/mortgage, food, utility bills, and savings.

Average Monthly Car Insurance Rates in GA (Liability, Collision, Comprehensive)

Just like your rates can fluctuate based on factors such as your driving record and credit score, the state average rate can also fluctuate. In most cases, however, rates seem to increase faster than our paychecks.

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Luckily, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners tracks the ebb and flow of car insurance rates across the nation. They are the experts and provide us with not only the average liability rates but also comprehensive and collision. Georgia rates are compared to the national averages in the table below.

Coverage Type:Annual Costs in 2015 (Countrywide):Annual Costs in 2015 (GA):
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As mentioned before, it’s best to purchase more than the minimum liability coverage.

Next, we will cover some of the most popular coverage options to enhance your car insurance policy.

Additional Liability Coverage in Georgia

Any insurance provider in the state of Georgia will offer you much more coverage than the minimum liability limits. Listen to them closely because some additional coverages are more important than others to each driver.

Sometimes, we have to work hard (and pay more) to protect ourselves even when others don’t plan ahead to take responsibility when they are at fault. Even though another driver may have the minimum liability coverage required, it may still not be enough to cover the cost of your injuries and damages to your vehicle. This makes the other driver “underinsured.”

An even worse case is when the other driver is at fault and has no insurance at all. In many states, the percent of uninsured drivers can differ based on demographics and laws.

Georgia, however, was ranked 25th in the nation in 2015 with 12 percent of drivers being uninsured.

That’s one percent lower than the national percent. Way to go, Georgia!

In case you are hit by another driver with the minimum liability limits or no liability insurance at all, additional coverages like Med Pay and Uninsured and Underinsured motorist coverage come in handy. Though not required by law, these coverages are highly recommended.

Examining loss ratios are an additional way drivers can consider purchasing more coverage. These ratios tell us how much a company makes on premiums they take in compared to the claims they pay out.

To illustrate, if a loss ratio is 70 percent, the company has covered $60 worth of claims per every $100 they have earned in premiums. The optimal loss ratio is usually between 60 to 70 percent.

Each company has its own loss ratio for each type of coverage, and we will show that data later. For now, the table below outlines the statewide loss ratios for Med Pay and uninsured and underinsured motorists coverages.

Loss Ratio201320142015
Medical Payments (Med Pay)86.61%
Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist81.65%87.32%93.68%
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For the 17 states that mandate uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, companies may have less difficulty managing loss ratios.

Companies in Georgia, however, have had trouble keeping their uninsured and underinsured coverage ratios in the safe zone of 60 to 70 percent. It steadily increased between 2013 and 2015, so drivers in Georgia are benefiting greatly from this type of coverage.

Add-ons, Endorsements, and Riders

Other powerful but cheap extras are available to provide extended coverage for you and your family.

Here’s a list of coverage options available to you in Georgia.

Average Monthly Car Insurance Rates by Age & Gender in GA

Since younger drivers are a higher risk, our rates usually decrease as we get older due to more driving experience.

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Some feel, however, that gender should not be a factor in determining car insurance rates. Several states have outlawed gender discrimination, while other states have outlawed other factors as well such as marital status, credit score, and level of education.

Our researchers actually found that age and the actual carrier make the biggest difference in rates.

For Georgia residents, there are differences in rates based on gender. Some companies charge much more for male drivers and some charge slightly more for female drivers. The table below shows rates for different age groups and marital status. It also includes an average for drivers under 18 and over 18 as well as the difference.

CompanySingle 17-year old femaleSingle 17-year old maleSingle 25-year old femaleSingle 25-year old maleMarried 35-year old femaleMarried 35-year old maleMarried 60-year old femaleMarried 60-year old maleAverage Rate over age 18Average Rate under age 18Difference in Average Rate
Allstate F&C$6,787.85$8,744.55$3,246.86$3,545.10$2,900.87$2,900.87$2,779.74$2,779.74$3,025.53$7,766.20$4,740.67
Geico General$5,405.23$6,468.98$2,312.93$2,573.90$1,798.00$1,774.88$1,741.80$1,741.80$1,990.55$5,937.11$3,946.55
Nationwide Mutual$11,720.53$15,095.77$4,594.13$4,986.39$3,767.46$3,895.53$3,724.66$4,094.75$4,177.15$13,408.15$9,231.00
Progressive Mountain$8,918.63$9,881.25$3,285.16$3,438.84$2,842.70$2,616.94$2,442.41$2,567.85$2,865.65$9,399.94$6,534.29
Safeco Ins Co of IL$22,759.67$25,413.76$5,674.73$6,038.00$5,354.43$5,828.62$4,383.03$4,975.31$5,375.69$24,086.72$18,711.03
State Farm Mutual Auto$5,893.47$7,744.68$2,426.79$2,621.78$2,211.60$2,211.60$1,984.58$1,984.58$2,240.16$6,819.08$4,578.92
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Safeco charges over $18,000 more for drivers under the age of 18 and males under 18 pay nearly $3,000 more than females. Geico seems to be the most lenient for younger drivers, so if you have a teen in your family, this company may be a good option. Otherwise, USAA offers the best rates if you are in the military or are related to someone in the military.

Highest and Lowest Rates by ZIP Code and City

Just like some states have outlawed rates based on gender and marital status, Michigan recently went all the way.

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Beginning in July 2020, insurance companies are not permitted to consider any factors other than driving record, and that includes where Michigan residents live. Detroit residents have paid the highest rates in the country for decades. Soon, they will pay the same rate as rural Michigan drivers.

Unfortunately, Georgia is not quite at this point in the game.

In the Peach State, ZIP code and city have a great impact on car insurance rates. After all, the more populated an area is, the more likely you will be in an accident.

Below, you’ll find tables listing the top 10 most and least expensive cities in Georgia. First, the most expensive cities.

Georgia Most Expensive CitiesAverage Car Insurance Rates
Stone Mountain$6,760.90
Pine Lake$6,580.33
Union City$6,486.71
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And next, the cheapest cities.

Georgia Cheapest CitiesAverage Car Insurance Rates
Moody Air Force Base$3,976.82
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Now that you know the average rate for the ZIP code or city in which you live or perhaps to which you plan to move, let’s take a closer look at the car insurance companies in Georgia.

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The Best Georgia Car Insurance Companies

Choosing a company can be difficult with such a large variety of options. Most drivers want the best rate, but there are other factors about companies that may weigh into your decision.

In this section, we provide information about those other factors in considering a company that will best protect you and your family.

Number of Car Insurance Providers in Georgia

Property & Casualty InsuranceTotal
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The 10 Largest Car Insurance Companies in Georgia

CompanyDirect Premiums WrittenLoss RatioMarket Share
State Farm Group$1,937,80668.72%22.49%
Progressive Group$1,001,82863.09%11.63%
Allstate Insurance Group$820,47951.96%9.52%
USAA Group$706,27691.01%8.20%
Liberty Mutual Group$335,54066.84%3.89%
Nationwide Corp Group$267,97177.10%3.11%
Travelers Group$266,86471.60%3.10%
Georgia Farm Bureau Group$261,43264.70%3.03%
Auto-Owners Group$224,70570.36%2.61%
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The same concept of loss ratio explained previously also applies to individual companies. In the table above, you can see that loss ratios are fairly reasonable if they float between 60 and 70 percent.

Unfortunately, Allstate appears to not be paying out for claims as much as some of the other companies.

The 10 Largest Georgia Car Insurance Companies’ Financial Rating

AM Best publishes information about the financial outlook of each car insurance company. If a company receives higher ratings, they are more likely to remain loyal to their customers and pay out claims.

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The AM Best ratings for Georgia car insurance companies are listed below.

CompanyFinancial Rating
Allstate Insurance GroupA+
Auto-Owners GroupA++
Georgia Farm Bureau GroupB+
Liberty Mutual GroupA
Nationwide Corp GroupA+
Progressive GroupA+
State Farm GroupA++
Travelers GroupA++
USAA GroupA++
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Financial stability doesn’t necessarily reflect customer satisfaction. Let’s take a look at the complaint index for each company.

Now let’s see who is the cheapest car insurance company in Georgia.

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Car Insurance Company Complaints

Not every state publishes complaint data, and if they do, it’s minimal. The Georgia Office of Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner provides data regarding complaints and confirmed complaints filed for each company. This helps consumers weigh in customer satisfaction as a factor in their decision in purchasing a car insurance policy.

The table below can be sorted so that you can see how complaints and confirmed complaints are compared. The Commissioner also calculates a ratio for both total complaints and confirmed complaints. The ratio is calculated based on their share of profits.

CompanyDirect Premiums WrittenNumber of ComplaintsAll Complaints RatioNumber of Confirmed ComplaintsConfirmed Complaints Ratio
Allstate Fire & Cas Ins Co$235,282,1821001.17151.17
Allstate Prop & Cas Ins Co$355,057,4161371.07130.67
Geico Gen Ins Co$604,265,0811730.79280.85
Geico Ind Co$421,979,1881280.84190.83
Georgia Farm Bureau Mut Ins Co$262,558,883590.62140.98
Owners Ins Co$216,427,064270.3410.08
Progressive Mountain Ins Co$694,440,6361740.69300.79
Progressive Premier Ins Co Of IL$493,160,1571570.88160.6
State Farm Mut Auto Ins Co$1,895,578,0814340.63580.56
Travelers Prop Cas Ins Co$250,236,822570.6390.66
United Serv Automobile Assn$258,779,317570.6170.5
USAA Cas Ins Co$241,396,875941.08110.84
USAA Gen Ind Co$202,860,842580.79111
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A complaint ratio below one reveals that the company is better than the average company when it comes to complaints. A ratio above one indicates that the company is worse than the average based on customer complaints.

Cheapest Companies in Georgia

You already got a sneak peek at rates for each company when we compared ZIP codes. Now we are going to reveal the cheapest companies overall in Georgia as well as examine rates based on your commute, chosen coverage level, credit history, and driving record.

Let’s take a bird’s eye view first.

The average rate for each company is shown in the table below and compared to the state average with the price difference and percent difference.

CompanyAverageCompared to State Average ($)Compared to State Average (%)
State Farm$3,384.88-$1,581.95-46.74%
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The company with the highest average premium is Safeco, and the company with the lowest average premium is Geico. USAA also provides low rates, but you may not qualify for their policy. This company provides services to only military members (retired and active) and their family members.

Commute Rates

The length of your drive to and from work can certainly affect your rates because you are more likely to get into an accident the more miles you drive per day.

Company10 Miles Commute
6,000 Annual Mileage
25 Miles Commute
12,000 Annual Mileage
Liberty Mutual$10,053.44$10,053.44
State Farm$3,384.88$3,384.88
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Three companies don’t charge higher rates for a longer commute: Liberty Mutual, Nationwide and Progressive. If you have a longer than normal commute, consider one of these companies.

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Coverage Level Rates

CompanyLow CoverageMedium CoverageHigh Coverage
Liberty Mutual$9,636.66$9,998.75$10,524.93
State Farm$3,167.98$3,387.35$3,599.32
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If you’d like to get more bang for your buck, Nationwide or Liberty Mutual seem to have the best deals for higher coverage levels as compared to lower coverage levels.

Credit History Rates

One factor that insurance companies consider in providing a quote is your credit history because your score can possibly reflect how committed you are to making payments. Again, some states, like Michigan, have now outlawed adjusting rates based on score. But, as for Georgia, this factor still remains.

A credit score takes quite a while to dip unless you have unsafe spending habits in a short period of time or perhaps experienced a life event such as medical complications or a divorce. If you see an increase in your rates at policy renewal, it may be because your credit score dipped.

Always keep an eye on your score and check your credit reports twice per year to look for any questionable items.

As far as Georgia residents are concerned, they fall in the top ten with the lowest vantage scores according to a study from Experian. Scores average around 654 with an average of three credit cards and nearly $7,000 in credit debt.

In the table below are the rates for drivers with good, fair, and poor credit.

CompanyGood CreditFair CreditPoor Credit
Liberty Mutual$6,923.06$8,834.05$14,403.23
State Farm$2,368.08$2,988.35$4,798.23
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Progressive appears to be the most forgiving for having a poor credit score. Liberty Mutual and State Farm, however, will penalize drivers whose credit scores dip into the poor threshold.

Driving Record Rates

If you are female, married, over the age of 25 and have a good credit score with a short commute, you may be doing well to get good rates. But if you have a lead foot or are a distracted or irresponsible driver in any way, your premium will increase if you get a ticket, cause an accident, or get a DUI.

CompanyClean RecordOne Speeding TicketOne AccidentOne DUI
Liberty Mutual$7,632.75$10,164.83$10,428.16$11,988.03
State Farm$3,084.80$3,384.88$3,684.98$3,384.88
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If one of these terrible incidents happen to you, expect your premium to more than double with Geico and increase by as little as 10 percent with State Farm.

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Laws in Georgia

As we have already seen, laws can vary from state to state, change at a moments notice, or stay in effect well beyond the point at which everyone sees a bill was signed with unintended consequences.

Obeying the laws of the road are the best way to prevent your insurance rates from increasing as well as keep you and other drivers safe. Laws in each state can be very different, and they can change frequently.

In the following section, we will review specific details regarding driving laws for Georgia residents.

Car Insurance Laws in Georgia

There are a few specific laws related to car insurance when obtaining coverage, filing a claim, or filing a lawsuit. We cover these important laws in the following sections.

Windshield Coverage

Windshield repairs and replacement are usually covered under the comprehensive portion of your policy. Some state laws require insurance companies to charge a zero deductible; however, for Georgia residents, you are required to pay the comprehensive deductible you set when you began your policy.

The average driver sets their deductibles for comprehensive and collision to either $500 or $1,000, so if this applies to you, you may be better off paying for windshield repair or replacement out of pocket rather than filing a claim.

If you do decide to file a claim, your insurer is permitted to use aftermarket parts as long as they are listed as part of the estimate. If you prefer OEM parts, it is likely you will have to pay the difference.

You can also choose where to have the repair done, but you will have to pay the difference in cost for that as well because your insurer will have a preferred shop.

So you can quickly see that it will likely be more cost effective for you in the short term and long term if you pay out of pocket because if you file a claim, your premium may increase.

High-Risk Insurance

If you have previously been convicted for a DUI or otherwise had your license revoked, going through the voluntary market for car insurance may result in higher than normal premium quotes.

A solution may be to go through the Georgia Automobile Insurance Plan. There are specific eligibility requirements, but insurance companies contribute policies to a lottery to provide affordable coverage to those with a poor driving record.

If you do go through this program, you will not be able to select the company because it is a lottery. But you can apply for the program through any insurance carrier.

Low-Cost Insurance

Those who have income below the poverty level or who receive Medicaid and Medicare benefits are sometimes eligible for low-cost car insurance in some states. Unfortunately, Georgia does not currently have any programs in place.

Some states have programs set up for those who receive benefits from Medicaid or Medicare, or those who have a combined family income that is below the poverty level. Unfortunately, at this time, Georgia has no such plan in place.

You must carry the minimum liability coverage in order to obey the law. Therefore, in Georgia, you can’t afford not to have insurance.

Automobile Insurance Fraud in Georgia

In the Peach State, fraud is considered a crime. Fraud is more than just filing a false claim to get your car fixed. Fraud can be committed by anyone involved with car insurance which includes policyholders, adjusters, repair shops, insurance companies, and even physicians.

You can even be charged with fraud if you commit a “white lie” like saying you are married or have a shorter commute when you get your insurance quote.

If found guilty, you may be sentenced to two to 10 years in prison, fined up to $10,000, or ordered to pay restitution to victims. If you know of anyone suspected of fraud, you can submit a report on the Commissioner’s website.

Statute of Limitations

If you are in an accident and you are not at fault, certain types of coverages may come in handy such as personal injury protection (PIP) and underinsured motorist coverage.

PIP is a type of policy you can purchase to cover immediate costs such as medical expenses and lost wages. Underinsured motorist coverage will help if the driver at fault does not have enough liability coverage to pay for your medical expenses and property damage.

If you don’t have these types of coverages, you can rely on the other driver’s policy to reimburse you for your expenses, but it can take a while. This is why states establish a statute of limitation.

Georgia law allows two years from the date of the accident to file for a lawsuit for personal injury and four years for property damage.

The only exception to the two-year personal injury rule is if someone dies as a result of injuries in a car accident. The two year period can then begin on the date of the person’s death.

Vehicle Licensing Laws in Arkansas

Like all states, Georgia enforces licensing laws. Below we cover some of these laws.


Georgia is compliant with the REAL ID Act.

Penalties for Driving Without Insurance

For the 12 percent of Georgia drivers who choose not to carry insurance, penalties are in place. For the first and subsequent offenses within the same five year period, registration will be suspended and drivers will have to pay a $25 lapse fee and $60 reinstatement fee. Additional fees and taxes will be required as well.

Teen Driver Laws

Young Driver Licensing LawsAge RestrictionsPassenger Restrictions
(family members excepted)
Time Restrictions
Learning Stage: 40 hours supervised driving, 6 of which must be at night
15 yearsno more than 1 passenger younger than 21 midnight-5 a.m. secondary enforcement
Intermediate Stage: Driving while unsupervised with restrictions;
those younger than 17 must have completed driver education; restrictions lifted at age 18
Must be 16 years old and have held learner's permit for at least 12 months. first 6 months—no passengers; second 6 months—no more than 1 passenger younger than 21; thereafter, no more than 3 passengers secondary enforcementmidnight-5 a.m. secondary enforcement
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Older Driver and General Population License Renewal Procedure

License Renewal ProceduresGeneral populationOlder Population
License renewal cycle8 years8 years
Mail or online renewal permittedby mail, limited to 2 consecutive renewals, but must appear in person at least every 16 yearsby mail, limited to 2 consecutive renewals, but must appear in person at least every 16 years
Proof of adequate vision required at renewalevery renewal every renewal
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New Residents

Transferring your current driver’s license to Georgia isn’t difficult at all as long as you do it before 30 days as a new resident. The Georgia Department of Driver Services (DDS) asks that you bring:

  • Your current state-issued driver’s license
  • Social Security card
  • Two documents to show proofs of Georgia residency
  • Proof of identity (birth certificate or passport)

You will surrender your other license and pay a fee to be issued a temporary GA license while you wait for your permanent one to arrive in the mail.

You can use your temporary license to then pay the taxes on your vehicle and get it registered. At this point, you will need to have proof of insurance in hand.

Comparative Negligence

Georgia is a modified comparative negligence state which means that, if you file suit against another driver to recover for bodily injury and property damage, your case will be investigated by a claims adjuster or heard by a judge or jury.

If you are found to be a certain percentage at fault in the accident (like turning right without stopping and the other driver ran a stop sign), the amount of money you can recover will be reduced to the percentage at which the other driver was at fault.

Be careful though, because if you are found to be 50 or more percent at fault, as the plaintiff, you will not be able to recover any losses.

Rules of the Road in Georgia

Obeying Georgia state laws as well as driving the speed limit and staying alert will help keep you and your family members safe. Here are a few of the rules of the road for Georgia residents.

Keep Right and Move Over Laws

While driving the roads in Georgia, you must yield and move right if a vehicle is blocking traffic in the left lane. If you are moving more slowly than the other traffic, you must move to the right lane and allow faster traffic to pass on the left.

If you approach a stationary emergency vehicle with flashing lights or a tow truck, utility, or maintenance vehicle with flashing lights, you must move a lane away, if possible. If this is not possible, reduce acceleration to a reasonable speed.

Speed Limits

Maximum posted speed limits are 70 mph on rural interstates, 70 mph on urban interstates, 65 mph on limited access roads and 65 mph on all other roads.

Seatbelt, Carseat, and Cargo Area Laws

Seat belts must be worn by any individual age eight through 17 years in both rear and front seats. Anyone 18 and over seated in the front must wear a seat belt. Failure to wear a seat belt will result in a $15 fine or $25 if it is a child age six to 18.

In Georgia, any child seven years and younger and 57 inches or less must be in a safety seat.

If a child weighs more than 40 pounds, he or she is permitted to use a lap belt in the back seat if there are other children in the back that weigh at least 40 pounds. Any child seven years and younger must be in the rear seat if available.

Any individual 18 and under are restricted from riding in the open cargo area of a truck. People 17 and younger also cannot ride in pickup trucks with a covered cargo area. Both of these cases apply to trucks on the interstate.


Drivers in Georgia that wish to work for ridesharing services must carry personal car insurance that meets the state’s minimum requirements. If they wish, they can purchase a commercial policy through five insurance providers: Allstate, Farmers, Geico, State Farm, and USAA.

Automation on the Road

According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS),

“Automation is the use of a machine or technology to perform a task or function that was previously carried out by a human. In driving, automation involves using radar, camera and other sensors to gather information about a vehicle’s surroundings, which is then used by computer programs to perform parts or all of the driving task on a sustained basis.”

Currently, Georgia considers automation technology fully deployed. Anyone operating a fully autonomous vehicle does not need to be licensed or be in the vehicle if the automated driving system is engaged.

Until December 31, 2019, the total liability insurance must be equal to 250 percent of the minimum required amount. After January 1, 2020, the liability insurance need only meet the minimum requirement.

Safety Laws in Georgia

Safety laws are in place to keep everyone safe on the roads; therefore, there are consequences if you drive while distracted or impaired.

DUI Laws

DUI SanctionsLimits
BAC Limit0.08
HIGH BAC Limit0.15
Criminal Status by Offense1st-2nd misdemeanors, 3rd high and aggravated misdemeanor, 4th+ felony
Formal Name for OffenseDriving Under the Influence (DUI)
Look Back Period/Washout Period10 years
1st Offense-ALS or Revocation120 days minimum up to 1 year
1st Offense Imprisonment10 days - 12 months, can all be suspended at judge's discretion unless HBAC, then all but 24 hours can be suspended
1st Offense-Fine$300-$1000
1st Offense-Other20-40 hours community service
2nd Offense-DL Revocation 3 years
2nd Offense-Imprisonment90 days - 12 months; mandatory 72 hours for 2nd in 10 years, otherwise can be probated
2nd Offense-Fine$600-$1000
2nd Offense-Other30 days community service min, IID 6 months min, evaluation and treatment program mandatory, mandatory DUI school, photo of offender must be published in local newspaper
3rd Offense-DL Revocation3rd offense in 5 years - 30 month revocation
3rd Offense-Imprisonment120 days - 12 months; sentence can be probated unless 3rd in 10 years, then 15 days mandatory incarceration
3rd Offense-Fine$1000-$5000
3rd Offense-Othermin 30 days community service, 6 months IID, DUI school required, photo of offender must be published in local newspaper
4th Offense-DL RevocationN/A
4th Offense-Imprisonment1-5 years, sentence can be probated to 90 days mandatory minimum
4th Offense-Fine$1000-$5000
4th Offense-Other60 days community service, can be suspended if 3 years jail term served, 6 months IID min
Mandatory Interlockrepeat offenders
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Marijuana-Impaired Driving Laws

Georgia is one of only seven states that currently have a zero tolerance for any amount of THC or metabolites in a driver’s system.

Distracted Driving Laws

Georgia has one of the strictest distracted driving laws across the nation. Distracted driving includes:

  • Eating or drinking while driving
  • Making adjustments to the music or stereo
  • Having a conversation with other vehicles in the vehicle
  • Any hygiene acts such as applying makeup, brushing hair, checking teeth, etc.
  • Using any kind of navigation to include an app, GPS, or a paper map
  • Texting
  • Talking on a cell phone or headset
  • Watching videos

If you are in an accident, be sure to not say anything about what you were doing or not doing, and get a lawyer right away.

Driving in Georgia

Knowing some of the data for your state related to theft, fatalities, and EMS response time will shed some light on the actual safety of Georgia roads.

Vehicle Theft in Georgia

Nearly 12,000 vehicle thefts occurred in Georgia in 2016. Drivers should be extra careful in some of the more populated areas that experience more vehicles as shown in the table below.

CityVehicle Thefts
Athens-Clarke County224
College Park214
East Point582
Sandy Springs214
Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan960
Union City367
Warner Robins218
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Also important to consider is what make and model of vehicle you decide to purchase because certain models are stolen more often than others. The table below lists the make, model, and model year for the most stolen vehicles in Georgia.

RankMake/ModelYear Model of VehicleNumber of Thefts
1Honda Accord19971,052
2Ford Pickup (Full Size)2006954
3Chevrolet Pickup (Full Size)1999948
4Honda Civic2000653
5Toyota Camry2014568
6Chevrolet Impala2008512
7Nissan Altima2014484
8Dodge Pickup (Full Size)2003452
9Jeep Cherokee/Grand Cherokee2001449
10Dodge Caravan2002425
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Road Fatalities in Georgia

In 2017, there were 115 fatalities in Fulton County alone. Let’s examine the data more closely regarding the different types of fatalities.

Fatal Crashes by Weather Condition and Light Condition

Weather ConditionDaylightDark, but LightedDarkDawn or DuskOther / UnknownTotal
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Fatalities (All Crashes) by County

Appling County18457
Atkinson County00431
Bacon County21644
Baker County04222
Baldwin County655128
Banks County27783
Barrow County119121012
Bartow County1721292617
Ben Hill County13023
Berrien County42244
Bibb County3123212834
Bleckley County20521
Brantley County32244
Brooks County83640
Bryan County258134
Bulloch County1516151814
Burke County1273812
Butts County35833
Calhoun County00002
Camden County695710
Candler County22344
Carroll County1621272028
Catoosa County589133
Charlton County41322
Chatham County4426544429
Chattahoochee County00314
Chattooga County54476
Cherokee County161212732
Clarke County7915136
Clay County21010
Clayton County2621264832
Clinch County21133
Cobb County5949495953
Coffee County36778
Colquitt County51713812
Columbia County107151721
Cook County25685
Coweta County1012182223
Crawford County14445
Crisp County24522
Dade County46532
Dawson County751257
Decatur County10761212
Dekalb County7055838095
Dodge County42546
Dooly County64261
Dougherty County1012132013
Douglas County1912222117
Early County42877
Echols County01212
Effingham County14165126
Elbert County27373
Emanuel County7121058
Evans County46044
Fannin County64316
Fayette County8107814
Floyd County1016141812
Forsyth County1711131115
Franklin County34678
Fulton County8577104130115
Gilmer County577610
Glascock County01020
Glynn County13169716
Gordon County1158135
Grady County34957
Greene County84845
Gwinnett County4555676166
Habersham County759127
Hall County1721333131
Hancock County13723
Haralson County83775
Harris County24899
Hart County16557
Heard County11342
Henry County2626292627
Houston County98111712
Irwin County54132
Jackson County67192324
Jasper County22357
Jeff Davis County62343
Jefferson County44694
Jenkins County21480
Johnson County01132
Jones County34388
Lamar County38633
Lanier County12010
Laurens County16811913
Lee County43332
Liberty County678814
Lincoln County10220
Long County12228
Lowndes County713181717
Lumpkin County43659
Macon County64227
Madison County117445
Marion County12131
Mcduffie County312466
Mcintosh County44256
Meriwether County63684
Miller County10240
Mitchell County45349
Monroe County11761412
Montgomery County41235
Morgan County358109
Murray County1218986
Muscogee County1417142726
Newton County187182117
Oconee County43596
Oglethorpe County23420
Paulding County148242115
Peach County311069
Pickens County45738
Pierce County33542
Pike County32928
Polk County775137
Pulaski County22211
Putnam County21688
Quitman County00000
Rabun County24736
Randolph County23101
Richmond County2327271732
Rockdale County8971314
Schley County20020
Screven County37646
Seminole County10240
Spalding County9991110
Stephens County545312
Stewart County00112
Sumter County17276
Talbot County62105
Taliaferro County41211
Tattnall County16525
Taylor County20136
Telfair County41435
Terrell County21124
Thomas County5641010
Tift County6851210
Toombs County55534
Towns County53323
Treutlen County32623
Troup County191491615
Turner County13242
Twiggs County12576
Union County31477
Upson County23540
Walker County841198
Walton County44101611
Ware County325116
Warren County54653
Washington County31969
Wayne County55439
Webster County11220
Wheeler County10332
White County24497
Whitfield County1213171313
Wilcox County03111
Wilkes County02111
Wilkinson County06554
Worth County41110210
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Traffic Fatalities Rural vs Urban

Crash Location20132014201520162017
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Fatalities by Person Type

Person Type (2017)Number
Occupants (Enclosed Vehicles)1,127
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Fatalities by Crash Type

Crash Type (2017)Number
Single Vehicle823
Involving a Large Truck214
Involving Speeding248
Involving a Rollover361
Involving a Roadway Departure769
Involving an Intersection (or Intersection Related)401
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Five-Year Trend for the Top 10 Counties

Fulton County8577104130115
Dekalb County7055838095
Gwinnett County4555676166
Cobb County5949495953
Bibb County3123212834
Cherokee County161212732
Clayton County2621264832
Richmond County2327271732
Hall County1721333131
Chatham County4426544429
Top Ten Counties428380502534519
All Other Counties7527849301,0221,021
All Counties1,1801,1641,4321,5561,540
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Fatalities Involving Speeding by County

Appling County00410
Atkinson County00100
Bacon County00200
Baker County00222
Baldwin County00231
Banks County01200
Barrow County11411
Bartow County01340
Ben Hill County01000
Berrien County02100
Bibb County64378
Bleckley County00101
Brantley County01000
Brooks County12020
Bryan County01041
Bulloch County01222
Burke County30001
Butts County01000
Calhoun County00000
Camden County24112
Candler County00100
Carroll County33626
Catoosa County32421
Charlton County11100
Chatham County137997
Chattahoochee County00000
Chattooga County21120
Cherokee County25108
Clarke County12441
Clay County00000
Clayton County563148
Clinch County10011
Cobb County166131913
Coffee County01313
Colquitt County15002
Columbia County43377
Cook County00221
Coweta County13724
Crawford County01321
Crisp County00000
Dade County00000
Dawson County20112
Decatur County00122
Dekalb County1111191715
Dodge County00210
Dooly County10010
Dougherty County04320
Douglas County82663
Early County01010
Echols County00000
Effingham County13111
Elbert County11000
Emanuel County00200
Evans County00000
Fannin County10000
Fayette County04111
Floyd County41542
Forsyth County32525
Franklin County01111
Fulton County1722292621
Gilmer County10010
Glascock County00020
Glynn County43013
Gordon County42021
Grady County00111
Greene County10302
Gwinnett County81891516
Habersham County10121
Hall County12633
Hancock County00100
Haralson County21401
Harris County02131
Hart County00011
Heard County00000
Henry County29334
Houston County21241
Irwin County11000
Jackson County00034
Jasper County10000
Jeff Davis County11000
Jefferson County00010
Jenkins County00000
Johnson County00000
Jones County00002
Lamar County05001
Lanier County10000
Laurens County32202
Lee County10000
Liberty County11131
Lincoln County00000
Long County00012
Lowndes County03012
Lumpkin County10410
Macon County10001
Madison County10101
Marion County01010
Mcduffie County04011
Mcintosh County00001
Meriwether County02230
Miller County00030
Mitchell County00002
Monroe County24112
Montgomery County00000
Morgan County20321
Murray County66213
Muscogee County23447
Newton County41322
Oconee County10001
Oglethorpe County10000
Paulding County01323
Peach County00412
Pickens County00201
Pierce County01110
Pike County10312
Polk County02000
Pulaski County00000
Putnam County10112
Quitman County00000
Rabun County00000
Randolph County10000
Richmond County34598
Rockdale County00021
Schley County00000
Screven County13020
Seminole County00010
Spalding County00220
Stephens County01004
Stewart County00012
Sumter County01001
Talbot County10000
Taliaferro County00000
Tattnall County00001
Taylor County00002
Telfair County00010
Terrell County00001
Thomas County10022
Tift County21014
Toombs County00110
Towns County01000
Treutlen County00000
Troup County23031
Turner County00000
Twiggs County00000
Union County00101
Upson County00300
Walker County00310
Walton County01231
Ware County10100
Warren County20301
Washington County10110
Wayne County21000
Webster County00000
Wheeler County10100
White County20020
Whitfield County30922
Wilcox County00100
Wilkes County01000
Wilkinson County00000
Worth County12200
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Fatalities in Crashes Involving an Alcohol-Impaired Driver by County

Appling County01012
Atkinson County00200
Bacon County01120
Baker County01122
Baldwin County12212
Banks County10010
Barrow County51432
Bartow County48652
Ben Hill County10011
Berrien County31100
Bibb County66648
Bleckley County00000
Brantley County01002
Brooks County12220
Bryan County00172
Bulloch County56425
Burke County43045
Butts County02201
Calhoun County00000
Camden County23226
Candler County20100
Carroll County43737
Catoosa County12342
Charlton County00211
Chatham County13914146
Chattahoochee County00003
Chattooga County11022
Cherokee County32303
Clarke County21613
Clay County00000
Clayton County856119
Clinch County10010
Cobb County1911122015
Coffee County02213
Colquitt County05334
Columbia County31055
Cook County01020
Coweta County12574
Crawford County01200
Crisp County00100
Dade County22101
Dawson County00213
Decatur County31043
Dekalb County2113252126
Dodge County11011
Dooly County20011
Dougherty County12252
Douglas County53454
Early County10121
Echols County00111
Effingham County14212
Elbert County11131
Emanuel County22323
Evans County02001
Fannin County21100
Fayette County22222
Floyd County22222
Forsyth County22413
Franklin County00203
Fulton County2119313627
Gilmer County02111
Glascock County01010
Glynn County13115
Gordon County30231
Grady County21222
Greene County02311
Gwinnett County1114202424
Habersham County13441
Hall County84998
Hancock County01400
Haralson County00411
Harris County11132
Hart County04213
Heard County00010
Henry County68576
Houston County21353
Irwin County12100
Jackson County10234
Jasper County10123
Jeff Davis County22010
Jefferson County10340
Jenkins County00110
Johnson County00000
Jones County21011
Lamar County04210
Lanier County00000
Laurens County21332
Lee County11200
Liberty County12211
Lincoln County00000
Long County00112
Lowndes County02343
Lumpkin County11112
Macon County21101
Madison County31212
Marion County02021
Mcduffie County13022
Mcintosh County10032
Meriwether County12231
Miller County10100
Mitchell County22112
Monroe County51263
Montgomery County01000
Morgan County00122
Murray County42112
Muscogee County545711
Newton County42727
Oconee County00111
Oglethorpe County10110
Paulding County31663
Peach County31623
Pickens County01012
Pierce County10012
Pike County00301
Polk County11021
Pulaski County00011
Putnam County20133
Quitman County00000
Rabun County02110
Randolph County20001
Richmond County86648
Rockdale County34216
Schley County10000
Screven County03022
Seminole County00000
Spalding County22430
Stephens County01003
Stewart County00001
Sumter County12120
Talbot County40003
Taliaferro County00000
Tattnall County04201
Taylor County00003
Telfair County10101
Terrell County00001
Thomas County13021
Tift County11020
Toombs County00010
Towns County01001
Treutlen County00000
Troup County106242
Turner County01000
Twiggs County00200
Union County00111
Upson County01120
Walker County10231
Walton County11031
Ware County00242
Warren County10010
Washington County10313
Wayne County21111
Webster County11000
Wheeler County00110
White County01041
Whitfield County32632
Wilcox County00000
Wilkes County01000
Wilkinson County00110
Worth County04100
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Teen Drinking and Driving

Alcohol-Impaired Driving Fatalities Per 100K Population1.0
Higher/Lower Than National Average (1.2)lower
DUI Arrest (Under 18 years old)89
DUI Arrests (Under 18 years old) Total Per Million People35.44
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EMS Response Time

Type of CrashTime of Crash to EMS
EMS Notification to EMS ArrivalEMS Arrival at Scene to Hospital ArrivalTime of Crash to Hospital Arrival
Rural Fatal Crashes
(534 total)
Urban Fatal Crashes
(905 total)
3.32 9.13 33.42 43.33
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Most Georgia households have two or more cars and commute 10-34 minutes alone to work.

Residents have an average commute time of 27.1 minutes which puts Georgia above the national average of 25.5 minutes. Not too surprising is that almost 79 percent of the population drive to work alone. Even over three percent of residents spend more than 90 minutes commuting per day.

Car Ownership

Over 60 percent of Georgia households have two or more cars and about 20 percent are single-car households. Fewer than five percent of Georgia households do not own a car.

Commute Time

Georgia residents have an average commute time of 27.1 minutes which puts Georgia above the national average of 25.5 minutes. Over three percent of residents spend more than 90 minutes commuting per day.

Commuter Transportation

Almost 79 percent of the population drive to work alone and about 12 percent carpool or take public transportation.

Traffic Congestion in Georgia

Even with a beltline, Atlanta is still ranked 11th in the US for having the most traffic congestion. In 2018, drivers spent an average of 108 hours in traffic and the cost per driver was $1,505.

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