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How To Find Low Income Car Insurance in California

low income car insurance california

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Finding a plan that fits your budget can be challenging when looking for car insurance in California. While there are some options for low-income residents of this state, they may be hard to find. Here are a few ways you can discover low-income car insurance in California, along with some recommendations about which companies offer lower rates. Whether you’re eligible for the low-cost program or simply want to find a cheap insurance plan, you can learn more about California car insurance here.

How To Find Low Income Car Insurance in California

You can find low-income car insurance in California in a variety of ways. There are programs and insurance packages available for low-income applicants, which you can use when shopping for a plan. The most effective way to find affordable insurance is through the California Low-Cost Automobile Insurance plan, although other options exist.

Take Advantage of the California Low-Cost Automobile Insurance Program

The California Low-Cost Automobile Insurance Program (CLCA) is available for any resident of California, regardless of immigration status. It’s a state-sponsored program that provides car insurance at a reduced cost. There are a few eligibility requirements, including:

  • Valid California residency
  • Valid California driver’s license
  • Own a vehicle worth $25,000 or less
  • Meet required income eligibility requirements
  • Be 16 years or older

Search for Discounts

Whether or not you apply for the CLCA, you can also search for discounts. Some insurance companies offer discounts for proof of driver safety education, a good driving history, or proof of enrollment in school or college. Consider looking for insurance companies that offer these discounts before you choose an insurance plan. You’ll end up saving money on your monthly and yearly car insurance bills.

Understanding Insurance Prices by City

As with many states, insurance prices vary based on your city. Typically, cities with a low population density have a lower average for car insurance. Some of the cheapest cities for purchasing car insurance include:

  • Morgan Hill
  • Lemoore
  • Dinuba
  • Banning
  • El Centro
  • Eureka
  • Porterville
  • Sacramento
  • Oroville
  • Crescent City

Similarly, some cities charge drivers higher rates for car insurance. It may be because the cost of living is higher in cities, or it may be due to more drivers on the streets, increasing the chance of an accident occurring. Here are a few cities where car insurance is more costly:

  • Rancho Cucamonga
  • Glendale
  • Palmdale
  • Ontario
  • Los Angeles
  • Thousand Oaks

How California Car Insurance Works

Every state has different requirements and regulations for drivers and car insurance. It’s important to understand how California car insurance works so you can find an insurance plan that works well for you. Once you find a plan, you will receive a proof of insurance card, which you can keep in your car for easy access in case of an accident. Here are a few details about how California car insurance operates:

Fault State

California is classified as a “fault state,” meaning that when a collision occurs, the driver at fault is responsible for submitting an insurance claim. Then, the at-fault driver’s insurance company pays the other parties involved in the accident. It’s crucial all parties involved in the collision exchange personal information to ensure the proper procedure can occur.

Minimum Liability Coverage Requirements

It’s required for drivers in California to buy liability coverage, and proof of insurance is necessary to register your vehicle with the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). When you purchase insurance in a fault state like California, the coverage applies to the other parties involved in a collision if you’re at fault. Likewise, if the other driver is at fault, their insurance covers your injuries and damages. You might consider finding a plan that exceeds the minimum requirements. Here are the minimum liability coverage requirements for drivers in CA:

  • $15,000 for death or injury of a single person
  • $30,000 for death or injury of multiple people in a collision
  • $5,000 for damage to the property of others

Companies With Affordable Car Insurance Plans in California

There are a few companies you can contact that have more affordable car insurance plans. Contacting these companies can help you compare rates and choose an insurance package that fits within your budget. Here are a few different insurance companies to consider:


Geico is an affordable car insurance company when you want minimum liability coverage. Geico offers services to residents across California so that you can work with an agent near you. Typically, you can get this coverage for just $390 a year, which is much lower than the average yearly cost for drivers in California.

AAA of Northern and Southern California

AAA provides car insurance to both Northern and Southern California. The Northern branch, known as AAA of Northern California, is approximately $454 per year. However, the price of its Southern counterpart, the Auto Club of Southern California, or AAA SoCal, is a bit more expensive to account for higher population sizes and a higher cost of living.


At a similar price as AAA NorCal, Progressive offers coverage for just $476 per year. This company provides the same services to drivers from all around the state. They also offer a variety of discounts you can apply to lower the cost of your insurance premiums.

Consider contacting each of these companies to learn more about their insurance packages so you can choose a good deal. Additionally, you can learn more about the CLCA to determine if the low-cost program is available to you. While car insurance can be a considerable cost, there are plenty of ways to reduce your insurance premiums and find an insurance package that works for you.

FIXD Research Team

At FIXD, our mission is to make car ownership as simple, easy, and affordable as possible. Our research team utilizes the latest automotive data and insights to create tools and resources that help drivers get peace of mind and save money over the life of their car.

We’re here to help you simplify car care and save, so this post may contain affiliate links to help you do just that. If you click on a link and take action, we may earn a commission. However, the analysis and opinions expressed are our own.


About the Author

FIXD Research Team

FIXD Research Team

At FIXD, our mission is to make car ownership as simple, easy, and affordable as possible. Our research team utilizes the latest automotive data and insights to create tools and resources that help drivers get peace of mind and save money over the life of their car.

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