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Rhode Island Car Insurance Quotes

Harbor in Rhode Island
The smallest of the United States, Rhode Island was the first to declare independence from Great Britain and the last to ratify the United States Constitution. Rhode Island is often called the "Ocean State" because much of its area is made up of large bays and inlets from the Atlantic Ocean. Even though the word "island" is in its name, Rhode Island is firmly connected to the mainland.

Some people arrive at this page because they are thinking about moving to Rhode Island. Other's already live here. Either way, It's a good idea to do some research into the car insurance options available in the state. New residents and seasoned inhabitants alike are wise to check car insurance quotes at least every six months. Online car insurance quotes are simply a way to make sure that you are paying the most affordable rates for the best coverage possible in your area.

Minimum Car Insurance Requirements in Rhode Island

Minimum Bodily Injury Coverage

Split Limit:

  • $25,000 per person injured in any one accident
  • $50,000 for all persons injured in any one accident
  • $25,000 for injury to or destruction of property of others in any one accident

Single Limit:

  • $75,000 per accident for all damages

Optional Car Insurance Coverage in Rhode Island

Uninsured Motorist (UM) Coverage

  • Must be at least as much as bodily injury minimum.

If bodily injury coverage purchased exceeds the legal minimum amount, UM must equal the additional coverage or the additional amount must be waived in writing.

Medical Payment Coverage

  • $2,500 per person injured in any one accident
  • $5,000 for all persons injured in any one accident

If you want to know how much you will spend on car insurance in Rhode Island, enter your zip code into the form on this page.

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What New Residents Need to Know about Driving in Rhode Island

When you move to Rhode Island, you have a 30-day grace period to transfer your driver's license and vehicle registration after you establish residence. Both transfers can be done at a local DMV. The transfer process in Rhode Island is not overly complicated, but there are some details that you will want to be aware of before you make the trip to the DMV office.

Second Time Around? Moving Back to Rhode Island

Previous Rhode Island residents who are moving back to the state after living in another state for more than a year may be able to receive a reissue of their original Rhode Island driver's license. If so, the normal fees and regulations will apply as if the license were being renewed by any continuing Rhode Island resident. The ability to reissue original licenses varies depending on the length of time the resident lived in another state.

If your out-of-state license carries any restrictions or endorsements, those will be continued on your Rhode Island driver's license. Drivers with suspended licenses in their previous states will not be able to receive a Rhode Island license until the prior suspensions have expired. You will need to provide proof of the expiration of your suspension to the Rhode Island DMV when you request a license transfer. State identification cards are available for residents who are unable to qualify for driver's licenses but need a form of photo identification that reflects their Rhode Island residency.

Necessary Paperwork

In order to receive a Rhode Island driver's license, you will need to complete the Application for License (LR-1) form that is issued by the state. The form can be downloaded from the Rhode Island DMV website and completed before you visit the DMV office to help speed up the transfer process. The office will need to see a current photo ID, which can be your out-of-state license if it has not expired. You will also need to present proof that you are in the country legally and proof of residency in the state.

What Driving Tests to Expect

Drivers who have out-of-state licenses that have been expired for more than a year will be required to complete a computerized traffic knowledge exam and a physical driving test. These tests will confirm your knowledge of general traffic laws in Rhode Island as well as your ability to follow those laws as you operate a motor vehicle. If your out-of-state license is not expired, or has been expired for less than a year, you will not be required to take a written test or a driving test. All drivers are required to take a vision test before they can receive their licenses.

Registration Transfer Paperwork

Transferring a vehicle registration in Rhode Island requires quite a bit of paperwork. You will need to complete three separate forms from the Rhode Island DMV: Application for Registration (TR-1), Sales or Use Tax Exemption Certificate, and the Sales Tax Exemption Affidavit. All three forms can be downloaded from the Rhode Island DMV website so that you can complete them before you visit the DMV. Rhode Island also requires a valid photo ID as well as proof that you are a resident of the state. Generally, a Rhode Island driver's license will suffice. You may be asked for a check stub or utility bill that shows your current Rhode Island address with your legal name.

VIN Verification

Cars that are 11 years old or newer are required to have their vehicle identification numbers (VIN) verified by a Rhode Island police department. The verification process is quick and simple and can be performed at any police station in your local area. Verification is performed free of charge. Failure to have your VIN number verified can result in fines or problems with registration renewals at the end of the year. VIN numbers are kept on file with the police department as long as you are the owner of the vehicle. The numbers will be transferred to the new owner upon sale of the vehicle within Rhode Island.

Registration Fees

The regular fee for transferring a title in Rhode Island is $51.50. Registration fees will vary depending on the age and weight of your vehicle. An extra $1.50 is added to the variable rate that is charged for registration fees. A duplicate registration is available for $18.50. Changing your license plates will cost $21.50 for one plate and $41.50 for two plates. You can choose to purchase specialty plates at various costs. Plates denoting distinguished military service can be issued free of charge with proof of service, although each duplicate plate will cost $31.50.

Car Insurance Requirements

All drivers must purchase the minimum legally required amount of car insurance before their vehicle can be registered in Rhode Island. The insurance company that you use must be licensed to sell insurance within the state. You will be asked to provide the clerk with your proof of insurance before the registration process can begin. Your proof of identification may be retained by the clerk and filed with your other registration paperwork.


It is possible to have your vehicle registered before you have it inspected. New residents need to have their cars inspected within five days of receiving their registration transfer, however. Inspections are available at several sites throughout Rhode Island. Once the vehicle has been inspected, the official inspection provider will affix a label to your windshield that proves that your car has passed. The car must be inspected at least once every year to remain legal. If the inspection expires, you may receive a traffic ticket and be required to pay a fine.

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