D. Gilson is a writer and author of essays, poetry, and scholarship that explore the relationship between popular culture, literature, sexuality, and memoir. His latest book is Jesus Freak, with Will Stockton, part of Bloomsbury’s 33 1/3 Series. His other books include I Will Say This Exactly One Time and Crush. His first chapbook, Catch & Release, won the 2012 Robin Becker Prize from Seve...

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has appeared on legaladvice.com, themanifest.com, and vice.com.

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Reviewed by Jeffrey Johnson
Insurance Lawyer

UPDATED: Oct 9, 2020

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Colorado
Colorado Statistic Summary
Road Miles 88,740
Registered Vehicles 4,632,430
State Population 5,607,154
Percentage of
Uninsured Motorists
13.3
Driving Deaths Speeding: 230 Drunk Driving: 177
Average Premiums Annually
Liability: $520.04 Collision: $287 Comprehensive: $174.61
Cheapest Provider: USAA

Knowing the basics of Colorado car insurance laws is important when you’re ready to get out on the road. We’ll look at minimum requirements, rates, ways to lower your rates, factors that affect the price of car insurance, and more. If you’re looking to lower your rates, one option is taking an AARP.org driving 101 course. This is especially important considering the steeply rising cost of auto insurance in Colorado.

Another great way to keep your rates as low as possible even in the midst of rising costs statewide is to look at car insurance in Colorado and conduct a comparison of car insurance quotes from multiple companies and choose the one with the best rates for you.

Looking for affordable Colorado car insurance? Enter your ZIP code to start your Colorado car insurance quotes comparison with our FREE tool.

Table of Contents

Colorado Car Insurance Average Rates and Coverage

Car insurance is a necessity, but knowing how and where to begin to choose the proper coverage from the best car insurance companies can be burdensome.

The good news is we have made it our business to ease your burden when it comes to the need-to-knows about car insurance in your state. We will provide you with the statistical and anecdotal medicine to alleviate any anxiety you may be feeling over the rising costs of auto insurance premiums.

Take a look at this chart to see the average cost of auto insurance in Colorado, as well as car insurance rates by state across the country.

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We’ll help you discover what the law requires, what you may want or need, and where you can get it at the best rates possible for your circumstance, as well as average car insurance per month in Colorado and other useful information.

How much car insurance coverage is required for Colorado Minimum Coverage?

Colorado is a “fault” state. If you are found at-fault in an accident, you are responsible to pay for all the resulting damages.

The state of Colorado requires all motorists to carry the minimum liability limits of 25/50/15 to satisfy “basic coverage.” This means that car owners must carry the following Colorado car insurance requirements, with minimum levels of liability insurance:

  • $25,000 for bodily injury or death of one person in an accident caused by the owner of the insured vehicle
  • $50,000 for total bodily injury or death in an accident caused by the owner of the insured vehicle
  • $15,000 for property damage per accident caused by the owner of the insured vehicle

Take a look at this table for specific minimum coverage requirements in Colorado.

Colorado Minimum Coverage Requirements
Colorado Minimum Coverage RequirementsMinimum Policy Limits
Bodily Injury Liability$25,000 per person
$50,000 per accident
Property Damage Liability$15,000 per accident
Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage*$25,000 per person
$50,000 per accident
Medical Payments (MedPay)*$5000
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*May be waived if rejected. UUM must be rejected in writing. MedPay may be rejected in writing or in the same way you buy insurance.

If uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage is not rejected, it will automatically be applied to a basic policy. Take a look at this video to learn a little more about uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.

Take a look at this chart to see mandatory minimum coverage requirements for every state in the country.

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Any motorist or business with 25 or more vehicles registered in the state has the option of self-insurance. According to the Colorado General Assembly:

Any individual who has over 25 vehicles registered to his or her name may qualify as a self‑insurer by applying for a certificate of self‑insurance from the state Insurance Commissioner.

The Insurance Commissioner must ensure that the individual will be able to pay the minimum coverages required by the state. For more information on self‑insurance, contact the state’s Division of Insurance within the Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA).

How much coverage is enough? Will opting for just the basic Colorado car insurance minimums meet all your insurance needs? That all depends on whether you have substantial assets (present or future) to protect. Are you willing to open yourself up to potential litigation in the event of an accident?

If not, consider increasing your liability limits. The experts at the Wall Street Journal advise limits of 100/300/50, offering the following recommendation:

Make sure you’re covered for an amount equal to the total value of your assets (add up the dollar values of your house, your car, savings, and investments).

Next, we will glance at what the average driver in the Mile High State pays for car insurance. The exact amount you will pay will probably be slightly higher or lower than these figures, but this data will give you a healthy frame of reference.

How much percentage of income are car insurance rates in Colorado?

Arthur Godfrey, the late, great radio and television broadcaster and entertainer once quipped, “I am proud to be paying taxes in the United States. The only thing is I could be just as proud for half of the money.”

This humorous quote underlies the principle of Disposable Personal Income (DPI), which is the amount of money you retain after paying the government its cut by way of taxes. Take a look at this table, where we compare average monthly Colorado car insurance rates to average DPI in the state.

Average Percentage of Income Spent on Auto Insurance in Colorado
Annual Full Coverage
Average Rate
Monthly Full Coverage
Average Rate
Annual Per Capita
Disposable Personal Income in CO
Monthly Per Capita
Disposable Personal Income in CO
Percentage of Income Spent on Insurance
$939.52$78.29$43,609.00$3,634.082.15%
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Basic liability coverage is what is required by law. What is considered full coverage auto insurance in Colorado? It includes liability, comprehensive, and collision insurance. We’ll break down the average cost of each.

Average Rates for Liability, Collision, Comprehensive, and Full Coverage Auto Insurance in Colorado
Type of Core CoverageAverage Annual Rate for Each Coverage Type
Liability$520.04
Collision$287
Comprehensive$174.61
Full Coverage$981.64
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So what are average monthly car insurance rates in Colorado for these coverage types? Take a look.

  • Average monthly liability rate: $43.34
  • Average monthly collision rate: $24
  • Average monthly comprehensive rate: $14.55
  • Average monthly full coverage rate: $81.80

We’ve perused some stats about what Colorado car insurance costs the individual Coloradan. Next, we will delve into some pertinent statistics about the insurance companies within the state.

What is loss ratio?

The insurance loss ratio is the dollar amount of losses compared to the dollar amount of earned premiums expressed as a percentage. A high loss ratio means that an insurance company has too many customers filing claims, which will subsequently lead to an increase in future premiums for all consumers.

For example, an auto insurer collects $100,000 of premiums in a given year and pays out $42,000 in claims, the company’s loss ratio is 42 percent ($42,000 incurred losses/$100,000 earned premiums).

What car insurance add-ons, endorsements, and riders are available in Colorado?

There are several additional coverage options that you can learn more about to decide if they’re a good choice for your situation. We’ll look at those right here:

  • Guaranteed Auto Protection (GAP)
  • Personal Umbrella Policy (PUP)
  • Rental Reimbursement
  • Emergency Roadside Assistance
  • Mechanical Breakdown Insurance
  • Non-Owner Car Insurance
  • Modified Car Insurance Coverage
  • Classic Car Insurance

The Colorado Department of Insurance released the Consumer’s Guide to Auto Insurance for a quick and helpful summary of all the enhancements available to you in the Centennial State.

Just over 13 percent of drivers in Colorado (13.3 percent to be precise) don’t have insurance, which ranks the state as the 19th highest percentage in the nation, which is why it’s a good idea to purchase uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.

Medical Payments is another coverage that is included in a basic Colorado policy but can be rejected in writing or in the form in which the policy was purchased (e.g. internet or phone).

Despite the increasing popularity of pay-by-the-mile auto insurance plans offered by companies like Metromile, presently they are unavailable in Colorado.

Other Usage-Based Insurance programs (UBI) are active and available to drivers in Colorado. Programs like SmartRide from Nationwide, or Drive Safe & Save from State Farm, or Drivewise from Allstate offer discounts to drivers based on your driving proficiency.

Do gender and age affect my car insurance in Colorado?

Country music living legend Reba McEntire once sang a ballad lamenting not knowing what to get the girl who has everything. Our response to that query is to raise a suspicious eyebrow and question or not the girl truly did have everything. Namely, did she have more favorable car insurance premiums than her male counterparts?

The only way to find out is to consult the data. Take a look.

Average Annual Insurance Rates by Age and Gender in Colorado
Insurance CompanyAverage Annual Insurance Rate for a Single 17-year-old Female Average Annual Insurance Rate for a Single 17-year-old Male Average Annual Insurance Rate for a Single 25-year-old FemaleAverage Annual Insurance Rate for a Single 25-year-old Male Average Annual Insurance Rate for a Married 35-year-old Female Average Annual Insurance Rate for a Married 35-year-old Male Average Annual Insurance Rate for a Married 60-year-old Female Average Annual Insurance Rate for a Married 60-year-old Male
Allstate F&C$11,732.84 $12,322.40 $3,748.22 $3,771.84 $3,397.34 $3,180.33 $3,056.13 $3,088.23
American Family Mutual$6,182.18 $8,292.20 $2,552.17 $3,128.70 $2,552.17 $2,552.17 $2,302.28 $2,302.28
Farmers Ins Exchange 2.0$11,703.79 $11,788.62 $3,401.12 $3,436.88 $3,095.55 $3,068.12 $2,804.12 $3,023.70
Geico Cas$6,116.54 $6,472.19 $1,797.35 $1,830.71 $1,962.23 $2,140.86 $2,069.94 $2,343.70
Safeco Ins Co of America$5,559.53 $6,061.99 $1,877.93 $1,897.98 $1,859.15 $1,810.08 $1,578.98 $1,736.25
AMCO Insurance$6,292.06 $8,057.66 $2,863.59 $3,094.73 $2,490.00 $2,536.58 $2,226.47 $2,354.68
Progressive Direct$8,765.26 $9,802.10 $2,926.11 $2,846.92 $2,593.20 $2,426.75 $2,250.01 $2,245.05
State Farm Mutual Auto$5,901.90 $7,471.21 $2,293.13 $2,717.20 $2,048.74 $2,048.74 $1,842.60 $1,842.60
USAA $5,582.30 $6,398.91 $2,873.09 $3,130.10 $2,232.85 $2,232.55 $2,126.52 $2,134.62
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Take a look at average premium rates for the Most Expensive Demographics in the Rocky Mountain State.

Average Annual Insurance Rates by Age and Gender, Ranked from Highest to Lowest Rates
Insurance CompanyDemographic (Age, Gender, and Marital Status)Average Annual Insurance RateRank
Allstate F&CSingle 17-year-old male$12,322.40 1
Farmers Ins Exchange 2.0Single 17-year-old male$11,788.62 2
Allstate F&CSingle 17-year-old female$11,732.84 3
Farmers Ins Exchange 2.0Single 17-year-old female$11,703.79 4
Progressive DirectSingle 17-year-old male$9,802.10 5
Progressive DirectSingle 17-year-old female$8,765.26 6
American Family MutualSingle 17-year-old male$8,292.20 7
AMCO InsuranceSingle 17-year-old male$8,057.66 8
State Farm Mutual AutoSingle 17-year-old male$7,471.21 9
Geico CasSingle 17-year-old male$6,472.19 10
USAA CICSingle 17-year-old male$6,398.91 11
AMCO InsuranceSingle 17-year-old female$6,292.06 12
American Family MutualSingle 17-year-old female$6,182.18 13
Geico CasSingle 17-year-old female$6,116.54 14
Safeco Ins Co of AmericaSingle 17-year-old male$6,061.99 15
State Farm Mutual AutoSingle 17-year-old female$5,901.90 16
USAA CICSingle 17-year-old female$5,582.30 17
Safeco Ins Co of AmericaSingle 17-year-old female$5,559.53 18
Allstate F&CSingle 25-year-old male$3,771.84 19
Allstate F&CSingle 25-year-old female$3,748.22 20
Farmers Ins Exchange 2.0Single 25-year-old male$3,436.88 21
Farmers Ins Exchange 2.0Single 25-year-old female$3,401.12 22
Allstate F&CMarried 35-year-old female$3,397.34 23
Allstate F&CMarried 35-year-old male$3,180.33 24
USAA CICSingle 25-year-old male$3,130.10 25
American Family MutualSingle 25-year-old male$3,128.70 26
Farmers Ins Exchange 2.0Married 35-year-old female$3,095.55 27
AMCO InsuranceSingle 25-year-old male$3,094.73 28
Allstate F&CMarried 60-year-old male$3,088.23 29
Farmers Ins Exchange 2.0Married 35-year-old male$3,068.12 30
Allstate F&CMarried 60-year-old female$3,056.13 31
Farmers Ins Exchange 2.0Married 60-year-old male$3,023.70 32
Progressive DirectSingle 25-year-old female$2,926.11 33
USAA CICSingle 25-year-old female$2,873.09 34
AMCO InsuranceSingle 25-year-old female$2,863.59 35
Progressive DirectSingle 25-year-old male$2,846.92 36
Farmers Ins Exchange 2.0Married 60-year-old female$2,804.12 37
State Farm Mutual AutoSingle 25-year-old male$2,717.20 38
Progressive DirectMarried 35-year-old female$2,593.20 39
American Family MutualMarried 35-year-old female$2,552.17 40
American Family MutualMarried 35-year-old male$2,552.17 40
American Family MutualSingle 25-year-old female$2,552.17 40
AMCO InsuranceMarried 35-year-old male$2,536.58 43
AMCO InsuranceMarried 35-year-old female$2,490.00 44
Progressive DirectMarried 35-year-old male$2,426.75 45
AMCO InsuranceMarried 60-year-old male$2,354.68 46
Geico CasMarried 60-year-old male$2,343.70 47
American Family MutualMarried 60-year-old female$2,302.28 48
American Family MutualMarried 60-year-old male$2,302.28 48
State Farm Mutual AutoSingle 25-year-old female$2,293.13 50
Progressive DirectMarried 60-year-old female$2,250.01 51
Progressive DirectMarried 60-year-old male$2,245.05 52
USAA CICMarried 35-year-old female$2,232.85 53
USAA CICMarried 35-year-old male$2,232.55 54
AMCO InsuranceMarried 60-year-old female$2,226.47 55
Geico CasMarried 35-year-old male$2,140.86 56
USAA CICMarried 60-year-old male$2,134.62 57
USAA CICMarried 60-year-old female$2,126.52 58
Geico CasMarried 60-year-old female$2,069.94 59
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You may be in goods hands with Allstate, but as a 17-year-old single male, you’ll pay on average three and a half times more to be secured by those good hands than his 25-year-old single brother.

Choose the insurance company that best meets your needs. Focus on yourself. There’s no need to apologize.

This chart compares the average differences in rates between males and females in Colorado.

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A married 60-year-old female will pay $2,069.94 on average with Geico, compared to $3,056.13 she would pay with Allstate. That is a difference of a whopping $986.19. Clearly, it pays to shop around.

In another example, if you’re looking for car insurance for a 35-year-old male, your best bet may be Geico, with average rates of $2,140.86.

What are the cheapest car insurance rates by ZIP code in Colorado?

Let’s take a look at the cheapest and most expensive ZIP codes in Colorado. Here are charts with the average annual premiums in Colorado by ZIP code:

25 Cheapest ZIP Codes for Car Insurance in Colorado
Cheapest ZIP Codes in Colorado CityAverage Annual Rate by ZIP CodeMost Expensive Car Insurance CompanyMost Expensive Annual Car Insurance Rate2nd Most Expensive Car Insurance Company2nd Most Expensive Annual Car Insurance RateCheapest Car Insurance CompanyCheapest Annual Car Insurance Rate2nd Cheapest Car Insurance Company2nd Cheapest Annual Car Insurance Rate
81504Grand Junction $3,291.13Allstate$5,559.67Farmers$4,321.67Geico$2,158.40Liberty Mutual$2,350.84
81505Grand Junction $3,299.49Allstate$5,559.67Farmers$4,391.99Geico$2,106.05Liberty Mutual$2,360.44
81507Grand Junction $3,312.39Allstate$5,559.67Farmers$4,300.31Geico$2,236.13Liberty Mutual$2,360.44
81501GGrand Junction $3,314.33Allstate$5,134.33Farmers$4,336.53Geico$2,236.13Liberty Mutual$2,434.26
80535Laporte$3,327.82Farmers$4,375.65Allstate$4,199.55Liberty Mutual$2,280.34USAA$2,837.72
81521Fruita$3,330.77Allstate$5,559.67Farmers$4,352.53Geico$2,106.05State Farm$2,610.96
80525Fort Collins$3,334.66Farmers$4,695.19Allstate$4,308.76Liberty Mutual$2,448.71USAA$2,707.04
81520Clifton$3,336.43Allstate$5,559.67Farmers$4,381.59Geico$2,106.05Liberty Mutual$2,350.84
81503Grand Junction $3,338.85Allstate$5,559.67Farmers$4,452.48Geico$2,158.40Liberty Mutual$2,360.44
81525Mack$3,344.40Allstate$5,431.16Farmers$4,591.98Geico$2,106.05Liberty Mutual$2,551.75
81524Loma$3,344.96Allstate$5,431.16Farmers$4,439.13Geico$2,106.05Liberty Mutual$2,375.76
81506Grand Junction $3,346.16Allstate$5,559.67Farmers$4,308.80Geico$2,158.40Liberty Mutual$2,434.26
80521Fort Collins$3,347.76Farmers$4,523.55Allstate$4,199.55Liberty Mutual$2,415.11Geico$2,799.30
80537Loveland$3,361.47Farmers$4,562.20Allstate$4,377.44Liberty Mutual$2,555.08Geico$2,746.43
80526Fort Collins$3,361.56Farmers$4,637.80Allstate$4,199.55Liberty Mutual$2,361.92Geico$2,799.30
80538Loveland$3,366.63Farmers$4,650.88Allstate$4,319.84Liberty Mutual$2,603.47Geico$2,746.43
81526Palisade$3,381.38Allstate$5,431.16Farmers$4,485.57Geico$2,158.40Liberty Mutual$2,603.97
80528Fort Collins$3,393.99Farmers$4,632.36Allstate$4,319.84Liberty Mutual$2,448.71USAA$2,749.54
80524Fort Collins$3,397.23Farmers$4,678.84Allstate$4,558.04Liberty Mutual$2,415.11USAA$2,707.04
81401Montrose$3,417.08Allstate$5,235.78Farmers$4,581.77Geico$2,159.83Liberty Mutual$2,711.63
80549Wellington$3,419.33Allstate$4,571.00Farmers$4,517.83Liberty Mutual$2,574.62State Farm$2,743.35
81523Glade Park$3,420.49Allstate$5,559.67Farmers$4,510.33Geico$2,236.13Liberty Mutual$2,562.30
81403Montrose$3,421.86Allstate$5,235.78Farmers$4,525.94Geico$2,159.83Liberty Mutual$2,711.63
80547Timnath$3,423.02Farmers$4,978.52Allstate$4,308.76Liberty Mutual$2,448.71Geico$2,758.74
81527Whitewater$3,432.47Allstate$5,577.83Farmers$5,055.56Geico$2,158.40Liberty Mutual$2,386.31
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ZIP codes affect auto insurance because of factors like traffic and crime rates. Find out how your ZIP code stacks up in Colorado by checking out this state chart.

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Six of the cheapest ZIP codes in Colorado can be found in Grand Junction.

25 Most Expensive ZIP Codes for Car Insurance in Colorado
Most Expensive ZIP Codes in Colorado CityAverage Annual Rate by ZIP CodeMost Expensive Car Insurance CompanyMost Expensive Annual Car Insurance Rate2nd Most Expensive Car Insurance Company2nd Most Expensive Annual Car Insurance RateCheapest Car Insurance CompanyCheapest Annual Car Insurance Rate2nd Cheapest Car Insurance Company2nd Cheapest Annual Car Insurance Rate
80219Denver$4,762.40Allstate$6,635.51Farmers$6,600.49USAA$3,345.01Liberty Mutual$3,514.27
80223Denver$4,757.54Farmers$6,750.80Allstate$6,481.50Liberty Mutual$3,591.58Geico$3,680.74
80010Aurora$4,722.91Allstate$6,709.57Farmers$6,345.60Liberty Mutual$3,454.53USAA$3,525.81
80230Denver$4,693.01Allstate$6,939.29Farmers$5,866.11Liberty Mutual$3,477.44USAA$3,530.73
80012Aurora$4,677.64Allstate$6,831.76Farmers$5,996.27USAA$3,530.73Liberty Mutual$3,565.22
80246Denver$4,673.75Allstate$6,913.77Farmers$6,273.18Liberty Mutual$3,309.16USAA$3,516.53
80204Denver$4,672.66Allstate$6,481.50Farmers$6,153.74Liberty Mutual$3,560.88USAA$3,657.89
80220Denver$4,642.72Allstate$6,744.02Farmers$6,276.00Liberty Mutual$3,413.46USAA$3,530.73
80247Denver$4,642.34Allstate$6,831.76Farmers$5,763.39Liberty Mutual$3,442.19USAA$3,530.73
80045Aurora$4,620.43Allstate$6,709.57Farmers$5,817.07Liberty Mutual$3,454.53USAA$3,530.73
80239Denver$4,581.88Allstate$6,523.66Farmers$5,864.52Liberty Mutual$3,441.92USAA$3,525.81
80205Denver$4,576.50Farmers$6,325.44Allstate$6,283.66Geico$3,461.13USAA$3,484.32
80203Denver$4,567.76Allstate$6,411.14Farmers$6,104.04Liberty Mutual$3,292.91Geico$3,369.30
80011Aurora$4,550.80Allstate$6,523.66Farmers$5,979.90USAA$3,244.30Liberty Mutual$3,442.19
80047Aurora$4,547.13Allstate$6,074.05Farmers$5,683.22Liberty Mutual$3,565.22State Farm$3,687.16
80207Denver$4,527.63Farmers$6,369.66Allstate$5,928.00Liberty Mutual$3,406.04USAA$3,530.73
80206Denver$4,526.04Farmers$6,145.16Allstate$5,853.97Liberty Mutual$3,368.61Geico$3,369.30
80014Aurora$4,525.03Allstate$6,565.34Farmers$6,007.98Liberty Mutual$3,155.03USAA$3,504.28
80218Denver$4,521.67Allstate$6,283.66Farmers$6,002.72Liberty Mutual$3,321.71Geico$3,322.81
80216Denver$4,519.40Farmers$6,451.96Allstate$6,074.49Liberty Mutual$3,315.08Geico$3,544.79
80224Denver$4,505.94Allstate$6,496.63Farmers$6,063.86Liberty Mutual$3,389.52USAA$3,504.28
80017Aurora$4,500.52Allstate$6,671.40Farmers$5,906.67Liberty Mutual$3,402.15USAA$3,405.74
80202Denver$4,497.08Allstate$6,296.06Farmers$6,112.84Liberty Mutual$3,352.37Geico$3,414.64
80231Denver$4,475.84Allstate$6,496.63Farmers$5,769.53Liberty Mutual$3,429.51USAA$3,530.73
80211Denver$4,464.23Allstate$6,086.89Farmers$6,033.88Geico$3,243.61Liberty Mutual$3,369.71
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By contrast, some of the most expensive ZIP codes in Colorado are in Denver and Aurora.

What are the cheapest car insurance rates by city in Colorado?

Will you get more affordable car insurance coverage living closer to the Colorado River, the Rocky Mountains, or Golden Gate Canyon State Park? Take a look at this table to find out.

25 Cheapest Cities in Colorado for Car Insurance
Cheapest Cities in Colorado Average Annual Car Insurance Rate by CityMost Expensive Car Insurance CompanyMost Expensive Annual Car Insurance Rate2nd Most Expensive Car Insurance Company2nd Most Expensive Annual Car Insurance RateCheapest Car Insurance CompanyCheapest Annual Car Insurance Rate2nd Cheapest Car Insurance Company2nd Cheapest Annual Car Insurance Rate
Clifton$3,313.78Allstate$5,559.67Farmers$4,351.63Geico$2,132.23Liberty Mutual$2,350.84
Grand Junction$3,322.24Allstate$5,474.60Farmers$4,358.02Geico$2,179.02Liberty Mutual$2,389.97
Laporte$3,327.82Farmers$4,375.65Allstate$4,199.55Liberty Mutual$2,280.34USAA$2,837.72
Fruita$3,330.77Allstate$5,559.67Farmers$4,352.53Geico$2,106.05State Farm$2,610.96
Mack$3,344.40Allstate$5,431.16Farmers$4,591.98Geico$2,106.05Liberty Mutual$2,551.75
Loma$3,344.96Allstate$5,431.16Farmers$4,439.13Geico$2,106.05Liberty Mutual$2,375.76
Loveland$3,366.63Farmers$4,650.88Allstate$4,319.84Liberty Mutual$2,603.47Geico$2,746.43
Palisade$3,381.38Allstate$5,431.16Farmers$4,485.57Geico$2,158.40Liberty Mutual$2,603.97
Fort Collins$3,388.15Farmers$4,696.20Allstate$4,352.61Liberty Mutual$2,417.45USAA$2,757.68
Wellington$3,419.32Allstate$4,571.00Farmers$4,517.83Liberty Mutual$2,574.62State Farm$2,743.35
Montrose$3,419.47Allstate$5,235.78Farmers$4,553.86Geico$2,159.83Liberty Mutual$2,711.63
Glade Park$3,420.49Allstate$5,559.67Farmers$4,510.33Geico$2,236.13Liberty Mutual$2,562.30
Timnath$3,423.02Farmers$4,978.52Allstate$4,308.76Liberty Mutual$2,448.71Geico$2,758.74
Berthoud$3,425.56Allstate$4,665.40Farmers$4,491.22Liberty Mutual$2,618.43Geico$2,705.72
Whitewater$3,432.47Allstate$5,577.83Farmers$5,055.56Geico$2,158.40Liberty Mutual$2,386.31
Masonville$3,433.77Farmers$4,786.19Allstate$4,291.74Liberty Mutual$2,603.47Geico$2,858.45
Delta$3,436.14Allstate$5,752.64Farmers$4,616.66Geico$2,107.48Liberty Mutual$2,494.42
Gateway$3,452.59Allstate$5,449.29Farmers$4,796.02Geico$2,288.48Liberty Mutual$2,562.30
Evans$3,468.17Allstate$5,069.20Farmers$4,680.78Liberty Mutual$2,446.28Geico$2,553.81
Glen Haven$3,468.96Farmers$4,916.37Allstate$4,291.74Liberty Mutual$2,618.37Geico$2,879.57
Olathe$3,473.78Allstate$5,571.82Farmers$4,793.37Geico$2,159.83Liberty Mutual$2,542.41
Austin$3,481.55Allstate$5,449.29Farmers$4,803.01Geico$2,237.56State Farm$2,581.05
Monte Vista$3,488.11Allstate$5,021.13Farmers$4,822.69Geico$2,533.48Liberty Mutual$2,599.59
Drake$3,488.53Farmers$4,987.95Allstate$4,291.74Liberty Mutual$2,618.37Geico$2,879.57
Cimarron$3,499.94Allstate$5,235.78Farmers$4,336.23State Farm$2,717.05Liberty Mutual$2,734.33
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As you can see, if you’re looking for coverage from Geico in Grand Junction, CO, for example, you’ll find some of the most affordable rates, with an average of $2,179.02.

Where does your city of residence rank for car insurance rates? Search this table to learn more.

25 Most Expensive Cities in Colorado for Car Insurance
Most Expensive Cities in Colorado Average Annual Car Insurance Rates by CityMost Expensive Car Insurance CompanyMost Expensive Annual Car Insurance Rate2nd Most Expensive Car Insurance Company2nd Most Expensive Annual Car Insurance RateCheapest Car Insurance CompanyCheapest Annual Car Insurance Rate2nd Cheapest Car Insurance Company2nd Cheapest Annual Car Insurance Rate
Aurora$4,485.52Allstate$6,378.06Farmers$5,847.54Liberty Mutual$3,300.77USAA$3,457.18
Denver$4,451.50Allstate$6,122.07Farmers$6,017.55Liberty Mutual$3,345.16Geico$3,449.52
Boone$4,416.55Allstate$6,195.05Farmers$5,955.20Liberty Mutual$2,782.94Geico$3,359.96
Edgewater$4,413.46Farmers$6,279.67Allstate$6,091.35Liberty Mutual$3,136.43USAA$3,400.44
Conifer$4,356.88Allstate$6,303.70Farmers$5,645.34Liberty Mutual$2,816.90USAA$3,577.09
Pueblo$4,351.79Allstate$6,223.13Farmers$5,783.22Liberty Mutual$3,135.55Geico$3,382.29
Kittredge$4,345.37Allstate$6,303.70Farmers$5,735.63Liberty Mutual$3,023.84USAA$3,281.91
Blende$4,307.21Allstate$6,286.45Farmers$5,462.17Liberty Mutual$3,128.26Geico$3,359.96
Avondale$4,286.82Allstate$6,244.99Farmers$5,848.93Liberty Mutual$3,067.77Geico$3,359.96
Pine$4,286.70Allstate$6,227.20Farmers$5,552.36Liberty Mutual$2,775.42USAA$3,350.30
Evergreen$4,275.74Allstate$6,303.70Farmers$5,490.26Liberty Mutual$3,023.84Nationwide$3,512.42
Cherry Hills Village$4,274.05Farmers$6,150.27Allstate$5,954.43Liberty Mutual$3,261.13Geico$3,375.68
Berkley$4,258.11Farmers$5,906.16Allstate$5,785.95Liberty Mutual$3,185.40Geico$3,219.53
Beulah$4,258.06Allstate$6,153.61Farmers$5,941.29Liberty Mutual$3,078.33American Family$3,353.48
Dupont$4,256.69Allstate$6,074.49Farmers$5,865.45Liberty Mutual$3,047.65Geico$3,160.61
Kiowa$4,237.52Farmers$5,700.89Allstate$5,428.33Liberty Mutual$2,768.05Geico$3,618.34
Pueblo West$4,237.11Allstate$6,244.99Farmers$5,447.51Liberty Mutual$3,149.36Geico$3,268.81
Deer Trail$4,231.16Farmers$6,520.12Allstate$5,470.96Liberty Mutual$2,838.41State Farm$3,395.95
Calhan$4,227.68Farmers$5,999.58Allstate$5,669.62Liberty Mutual$2,646.84USAA$3,494.59
Fort Carson$4,204.82Allstate$6,083.85Farmers$5,557.52Liberty Mutual$2,867.51State Farm$3,357.87
Idaho Springs$4,194.17Allstate$6,032.22Farmers$5,510.99Liberty Mutual$3,168.00Geico$3,170.65
Yoder$4,188.72Allstate$5,685.45Farmers$5,647.34Liberty Mutual$2,646.84State Farm$3,548.46
Indian Hills$4,187.74Farmers$5,975.56Allstate$5,645.56Liberty Mutual$2,975.13USAA$3,281.91
Lakewood$4,174.68Allstate$6,070.40Farmers$5,830.34Liberty Mutual$3,093.81Geico$3,205.94
Buffalo Creek$4,171.50Farmers$5,663.46Allstate$5,569.05Liberty Mutual$2,929.81USAA$3,350.30
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You can compare the cheapest and most expensive rates in the cities listed in the above table to see where your policy rates rank.

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Best Colorado Car Insurance Companies

What are the best car insurance companies in Colorado?

Choosing the best car insurance company is an important decision that could potentially cost or save you hundreds of dollars annually. When you consider the hundreds of different companies from which to choose and all their various rates, discount programs, and ever-changing protocols, the task can become even more stressful.

How can you decide with any modicum of confidence? There isn’t enough time in the day to do substantial research on each insurer. Who’s going to give you the best rates? Who has the best customer service? Do you qualify for any discounts or upgrades?

Mulling over all these options without the proper guidance can lead to many sleepless nights in America.

Don’t be anxious. We will provide you with the most meaningful data you’ll need when deciding on the best car insurance company for you. The public reputation and perception of any company from which you’re considering purchasing car insurance should be a major factor in your deliberations.

Keep reading to learn more about Colorado insurance company ratings so you can find the best insurance companies in Colorado as a whole as well as the best auto insurance in Colorado Springs and other cities throughout the state.

What are the financial ratings of the largest car insurance companies in Colorado?

A.M. Best is a credit rating agency. They evaluate insurance companies and then give them a grade based on their financial stability. The table below shows the 10 largest insurance companies in Colorado by market share with their A.M. Best rating.

A.M. Best Credit Ratings for Top 10 Car Insurance Companies in Colorado
Insurance CompanyA.M. Best Credit Rating
State FarmA++
USAAA++
GeicoA++
ProgressiveA+
AllstateA+
American FamilyA
FarmersA
Liberty MutualA
TravelersA++
NationwideA+
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Any company with a rating of A- or better has a stable financial outlook, which means you’re in good shape with any of these top rated auto insurance companies in Colorado.

Which car insurance companies have the best ratings in Colorado?

J.D. Power insurance ratings is a trusted, third-party source for auto insurance ratings. These ratings are based on the opinions of a representative sample of customers who have used or purchased the product or service being rated and are therefore representative of a typical buying experience. We’ll start with the major insurance companies in Colorado and their average rates, as compared to the average insurance rates in the state.

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As you can see, State Farm Colorado car insurance rates, for example, are 19 percent lower than average rates for the state. Take a look at this table to see what J.D. Power’s auto insurance reviews for Colorado companies (along with other companies in the Southwest region) say about customer service ratings compared to other companies in the area.

J.D. Power Customer Satisfaction Index Rating for Insurance Companies in the Southwest
Insurance CompanyOverall Customer Satisfaction Index Rating (1,000 point scale)
USAA876
American Family834
Geico834
Allstate830
The Hartford829
State Farm826
Farmers823
Liberty Mutual816
Safeco810
CSAA Insurance Group809
Travelers808
Progressive803
Nationwide786
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J.D. Power often looks at companies based on region, rather than state, so for the purposes of this discussion, we’ve listed the insurance companies ratings for the Southwest region.

This information can help you decide on the best home and auto insurance companies in Colorado.

Which car insurance companies have the most complaints in Colorado?

Honesty, loyalty, trust, and open communication are all key elements for successful relationships that are characterized by long-term satisfaction.However, in some cases, longevity is impossible and dissatisfaction is inevitable. The relationship is on life support and there’s nothing anyone can do to save it.

In such cases where the customer is dissatisfied, he or she can file a complaint. Those complaints, justified or not, are factored into a company’s complaint ratios.

How many complaints does a company receive per one million dollars of business? The answer is the complaint ratio. If you wish to file a complaint against a car insurance company in the state of Colorado, use this online form.

Here’s how the largest companies by market share compare for complaint ratios.

Complaint Ratio Data for Colorado Car Insurance Companies
Insurance CompanyTotal ComplaintsConfirmed ComplaintsComplaint RatioCompany NameTotal ComplaintsConfirmed ComplaintsComplaint Ratio
AIG 000MetLife430.17
Essentia000Nationwide Agribusiness 630.18
Farmers Alliance Mutual 000360 Insurance 110.2
Grange 000Farmers53180.2
Great Northern 100.08USAA32110.2
Country Preferred 200.09Geico 620.21
Travelers Home and Marine 200.12Liberty Mutual43160.21
Amica Mutual 420.15State Farm174620.21
SECURA Supreme 100.15Horace Mann 100.22
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As you can see, some of the best car insurance companies in Colorado have very low complaint ratio numbers (anything below one means below average), which is good news for you.

How many car insurance companies are available in Colorado?

There are nearly 900 auto insurance companies registered in Colorado (858 to be exact). Ten of them are domestic (incorporated in the state) and 848 are foreign (incorporated outside of Colorado). Take a look at this chart to see the market share of the major companies in Colorado.

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Comparing quotes will help you know where to get started. Once you find the company that offers the best rates to you, do some more research into their financial rating, customer satisfaction rating, and complaint ratios. Then, you can confidently choose your insurer.

Another way to be certain you can maintain low insurance rates is to be a good driver. In order to be a good driver, you must know the rules of the road and obey them. We’ll review the laws of the Rocky Mountain State so that you can keep a rock-solid driving record.

Colorado Car Insurance Rates by Company

Now, we’re going to compare and contrast the top car insurance companies to see which of them give the best rates on average in Colorado.

Does my commute affect my car insurance rate in Colorado?

Commute distance can sometimes have an effect on your rates, because the more time you spend on the road, the higher the risk of you getting into an accident. Take a look at this table to see how insurance companies in Colorado handle commutes when adjusting insurance rates.

Average Annual Car Insurance Rates Based on Commute in Colorado
Insurance CompanyAverage Annual Rates for a 10-mile Commute (6,000 Annual Mileage)Average Annual Rates for a 25-Mile Commute (12,000 annual mileage)
Liberty Mutual$2,797.74 $2,797.74
Allstate$5,831.60 $5,831.60
State Farm$3,190.31 $3,351.22
Nationwide$3,739.47 $3,739.47
Progressive$4,231.92 $4,231.92
Geico$3,025.45 $3,157.93
USAA$3,244.04 $3,433.70
American Family$3,653.11 $3,812.93
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Not all companies use commute as a factor in Colorado. However, State Farm, Geico, USAA, and American Family do make minor adjustments to their rates based on commute.

Can coverage level change my car insurance rate with companies in Colorado?

The more coverage you purchase the higher the cost, right? Take a look at this table to see how much coverage level can affect your rates.

Average Annual Rates by Coverage Level in Colorado
Insurance CompanyAverage Annual Rates for a Low Coverage LevelAverage Annual Rates for a Medium Coverage LevelAverage Annual Rates for a High Coverage Level
Allstate$5,236.91$5,518.14$5,856.45
American Family$3,546.22$3,809.91$3,842.92
Farmers$4,641.62$5,215.47$6,013.62
Geico$2,785.20$3,034.95$3,454.92
Liberty Mutual$2,637.04$2,787.15$2,969.02
Nationwide$3,748.13$3,740.53$3,729.76
Progressive$3,915.86$4,244.39$4,535.53
State Farm$3,052.89$3,272.35$3,487.06
USAA$3,191.66$3,338.66$3,486.28
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Higher coverage levels do mean higher rates, but not by as much as you might think. For example, for American Family, the average low coverage rate is $3,546.22, with a 7 percent increase for medium coverage and a less than 1 percent increase from medium to higher coverage.

How does my credit history affect my car insurance rates with companies in Colorado?

Have you ever wondered how your credit history influences the quotes you receive from car insurance companies? Consumer Reports conducted a study for Colorado analyzing the effect of credit history on rates. Take a look at this table to see average car insurance rates based on credit score.

Average Annual Insurance Rates by Credit Score in Colorado
Insurance CompanyAverage Annual Insurance Rates for Good CreditAverage Annual Insurance Rates for Fair CreditAverage Annual Insurance Rates for Poor Credit
Allstate$4,105.68$5,439.82$7,066.00
American Family$2,895.90$3,452.49$4,850.67
Farmers$4,739.93$4,988.44$6,142.35
Geico$2,465.94$3,091.66$3,717.48
Liberty Mutual$1,947.80$2,446.38$3,999.04
Nationwide$3,118.09$3,578.13$4,522.20
Progressive$3,768.17$4,108.11$4,819.49
State Farm$2,352.76$2,918.53$4,541.00
USAA$2,256.64$2,816.63$4,943.34
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Insurance companies often consider credit score a reflection of an individual’s overall responsibility. More responsible people are seen as lower risk drivers, who therefore qualify for lower insurance rates. A lower credit score can mean higher insurance rates, sometimes even as much as 100 percent higher.

How does my driving record change my rates with car insurance companies in Colorado?

Traffic violations have the potential to cause your car insurance rates to rise a mile high. How adversely they will be affected will differ from company to company. Each insurance company has its own underwriting criteria and procedures. This chart provides averages for how heavily different factors can affect your insurance rates.

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Here is a quick look at how top car insurance companies in the Mile High State price various driving infractions:

Average Annual Insurance Rates by Driving Record in Colorado
Insurance CompanyAverage Annual Insurance Rates for a Clean Driving RecordAverage Annual Insurance Rates for a Driving Record With 1 Speeding ViolationAverage Annual Insurance Rates for a Driving Record With 1 AccidentAverage Annual Insurance Rates for a Driving Record With 1 DUI
Allstate$4,723.09$5,350.87$5,431.34$6,643.37
American Family$2,762.77$3,131.89$3,915.14$5,122.27
Farmers$4,468.57$5,283.78$5,743.39$5,665.21
Geico$2,184.55$2,858.30$3,395.15$3,928.75
Liberty Mutual$2,450.68$2,891.61$2,869.91$2,978.75
Nationwide$2,872.86$3,163.26$3,930.20$4,991.57
Progressive$3,665.41$4,278.14$5,115.10$3,869.05
State Farm$3,008.73$3,270.76$3,532.80$3,270.76
USAA$2,439.12$2,750.39$2,973.13$5,192.84
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In general, the more severe your driving infraction, the higher your rates may be increased. In most cases, a DUI will mean higher rates than a speeding violation will, for example.

Colorado Laws

It would take a long time to memorize every law in Colorado. It’s important to follow the laws, but the details can get a bit foggy. We’ll help clear the haze by listing some of the driving laws most important to know.

What are the car insurance laws in Colorado?

Insurance companies in Colorado don’t have free reign to set rates however they want. Although they have leeway, they are governed. Regardless, as we already noted, if you don’t follow the rules of the road, you may see an increase in your insurance rates. Keep reading to find out more about what you need to know before you get behind the wheel in Colorado.

Car Insurance Rate-Setting Regulations

While rates are regulated by “open competition,” rate increases and decreases will generally need to be approved by the State’s Insurance Commissioner.

Windshield Coverage

Some insurance companies may offer windshield replacement with comprehensive coverage, but there are no laws requiring insurers to cover windows.

High-Risk Insurance

If your license has been revoked or suspended, you may need to file an SR-22 to have your licenses reinstated. The SR-22 form is available from your insurance company but it is not an insurance policy.

The form is just assurance that you will have car insurance coverage. If your policy is canceled, the form ensures the insurer will notify the DMV of insurance cancellation, at which point, your license will be suspended.

Your license may be suspended for any of the following:

  • A DUI conviction
  • Driving without insurance
  • Repeat traffic offenses

You can change insurance companies while you’re required to file an SR-22, but you must get a new SR-22 with the new company before the old one goes out of effect.

Automobile Insurance Fraud in Colorado

Insurance fraud is the second-largest economic crime in America. Rates are raised dramatically by insurance companies and passed on to the consumers in attempts to combat fraud.

There are two classifications of fraud: hard and soft.

  • Hard Fraud – A purposefully fabricated claim or accident
  • Soft Fraud – A misrepresentation of information to the insurance company

Soft fraud is more common than hard fraud. Twenty to forty percent of consumers admitted to lying to their insurer about one of the following:

  • Number of annual miles driven
  • Number of drivers in the household
  • How the vehicle would be used

Insurance fraud is a crime no matter how you slice it. Even the “little white lie” you tell to get a lower rate can lead to harmful consequences. That kind of willful misrepresentation of facts is known as “rate evasion” and is a $16 billion annual expense to auto insurers.

Misrepresentation to an insurance company is considered a misdemeanor and falsifying claims is a class 5 felony.

Colorado has employed an Insurance Fraud Unit to investigate fraudulent activity throughout the state. According to the Attorney General’s Office,

The Unit also works closely with other agencies including the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB), Colorado Division of Insurance, FBI, and local police departments.

They are working to eliminate insurance fraud in the state.

Committing insurance fraud is a crime, no matter your justification. If you suspect insurance fraud or have been a victim of insurance fraud, you can fill out and turn in a form provided on their website.

Statute of Limitations

Colorado’s statute of limitations for filing a claim is three years for both personal injury and property damage.

What are the vehicle licensing laws in Colorado?

These are important laws to get familiar with. Your car has to be registered and insured to go on the road. If not, you’ll pay.

REAL ID

The Rocky Mountain State is compliant with the REAL ID Act passed by Congress and enforced by Homeland Security. Take a look at this news clip from when the REAL ID act requirements were announced in Colorado.

This means that a Colorado-issued driver’s license or state ID is an acceptable form of identification at federal facilities, airports, and nuclear power plants.

Penalties for Driving Without Insurance

The Colorado car insurance database is called the Motorist Insurance Information Database (MIIDB) program to which the police and DMV have access. Registration information is updated in the MIIDB daily and insurance information is updated weekly or more. Take a look at this table to see what happens when you’re caught driving uninsured.

Penalties for Driving without Insurance in Colorado
Penalty TypeDriving Uninsured – First OffenseDriving Uninsured – Second Offense
Fine$500 minimum$1,000 minimum
PointsFourFour
License SuspensionUntil you show proof of insurance to the DMV Four months
Community ServicePossible up to 40 hoursPossible up to 40 hours
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As you can see, driving without insurance can be expensive. There is no Colorado car insurance grace period and it’s not worth the risk.

Proof of Insurance

The following forms of proof of insurance are accepted in Colorado

  • Electronic – picture of a current insurance card or pdf file of coverage on a phone, tablet, or another electronic device
  • Insurance Card
  • Declaration Page
  • Letter/Binder – from the insurance company on their letterhead

Without at least one of these forms of proof of insurance, you may be penalized for driving without insurance, even if you do actually have insurance.

Affidavit of Non-Use

The Colorado Department of Revenue, Division of Motor Vehicles states the following: “Colorado residents who wish to register vehicles that will not be operated for a period of time or are temporarily residing out of state with valid out of state insurance, may complete the Affidavit of Non-Use and submit it to their county motor vehicle office.”

Teen Driver Laws

Adopted in 2002, the Graduated Driver Licensing laws have been a huge success. Teen motor vehicle fatalities have dropped an astounding 67 percent since the program’s inception.

Colorado Teen Graduated Drivers License Requirements and Laws
Teen Driver License Restrictions Learner's PermitRestricted License Unrestricted License
Age15 - if enrolled, attending, and participating in driver's ed
15 1/2 - if completed a four-hour driver-awareness course
16 - if none of above
If under 18, one year after obtaining learner's permit17 - if held restricted license 12 months
18 - otherwise
PassengersMust be supervised by a licensed parent/guardian or their licensed adult appointeeFirst six months - no passengers under 21
Second six months - limit of one passenger under 21
(exceptions: siblings, family emergencies)
No restrictions
HoursNo restrictionsFirst year - no driving between midnight and 5 a.m. (exceptions: presence of a parent/guardian, driving to and from school activities or work, family emergency, being an emancipated teen)No restrictions
Cell phone useForbiddenForbiddenForbidden if under 18
Pre-requisitesIf under 18, parent or guardian must sign an affidavit of liabilityCompletion of 50 hours supervised driving, 10 of which at nightIf under 18, holding a restricted license for one year
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As you can see, with this process, the youngest a driver can be in order to be fully licensed is 17.

Older Driver License Renewal

Some states maintain different license renewal rules for older drivers, and Colorado is no exception.

Older drivers must get their licenses renewed every five years, which is the same requirement for the general population. The only difference is how they can renew. The exceptions to getting a license renewed in person are as follows:

  • General population – limited to two consecutive renewals online before having to go in person or every other renewal by mail
  • Over 66 years old – every other renewal may be by mail

There are no other differences between general and older drivers in terms of license renewal.

New Resident Licensing

If you’ve recently moved to Colorado, you may be curious about when you’re required to get a Colorado license. The Colorado DMV website says you need a Colorado license within 30 days of residency. The residency requirements are as follows:

  • Own or operate a business in Colorado, OR
  • Are gainfully employed in Colorado, OR
  • Reside in Colorado for 90 consecutive days

Your valid driver’s license from your previous state of residence should be enough for you to not have to take a driving or written exam. When you go to the DMV to get a Colorado license, be prepared with the following documentation:

  • A valid driver license from the previous state of residence
  • Proof of your social security number
  • Two proofs of current Colorado address
  • Proof of lawful presence
  • Money for fees
After becoming a Colorado resident, you must register your vehicle within 90 days.

License Renewal

Driver licenses must be renewed every five years. You should not wait until your license expires.

Renewals may be completed online, in person, or by mail. There are restrictions on renewing online or by mail:

  • May renew by mail only every other renewal
  • Limited to two times in a row renewing online
  • Those 66 years old and older are limited to renewing by mail every other renewal at most

Don’t miss your license renewal. Driving with an expired license can result in fines and other penalties.

What are the rules of the road in Colorado?

Colorado is a fault state, so the person at fault in an accident is responsible to pay for damages done to the other party. A fault state is also known as a tort state.

Seat Belt & Car Seat Laws

Colorado laws mandate that motorists and front-seat passengers 16 years old and older must wear a seat belt. A violation is a secondary offense. By itself, you cannot be pulled over for failure to wear a seat belt. However, if stopped for another offense while failing to wear your seat belt, you can receive a ticket for both the initial offense and for not having on a seat belt. The minimum fine is $65.

Passengers under 16 years old must wear seat belts at all times, and failure to do so is a primary offense for which you can be pulled over.

Riding in the cargo section of a pick-up truck is prohibited unless the cargo area is fully or partially enclosed on all four sides.

Colorado has specific car seat laws for children as well.

  • Any child younger less than a year old and weighing less than 20 pounds is required to be buckled in a rear-facing child restraint.
  • Any child between the ages of one and three and weighing between 20 and 40 pounds is required to be buckled in a child restraint
  • Any child between the ages of four and seven must be in a booster seat
  • Any child between the ages of eight and 15 is subject to adult seat belt requirements

Child safety seat laws are primary and you can be pulled over for violating them. The penalty is a $65 fine and a six dollar surcharge.

Keep Right and Move Over Laws

When driving, you must keep right when traveling slower than the average speed of traffic around you. On roads with a speed limit over 65 mph, the left lane is reserved for passing.

When stationary vehicles with emergency lights are present, drivers must vacate the lane nearest those vehicles if safe to do so, or they must slow down.

Colorado has increased penalties for motorists who fail to mover over and recklessly endanger the lives of law enforcement, first responders, and safety road workers. Legislators hope that stiffer penalties for “move over” law violators will help prevent tragedies like that of fallen state trooper Cody Donahue.

Speed Limits

Take a look at this table to see speed limit maximums for different road types in Colorado.

Speed Limits by Road Type in Colorado
Type of RoadwaySpeed Limit
Rural Interstates75 mph
Urban Interstates65 mph
Other Limited Access Roads65 mph
Other Roads65 mph
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Speed limits on these kinds of roads cannot exceed the maximums in this table but can be set lower, depending on road safety, etc.

Ridesharing

The following insurance companies offer coverage for ridesharing services:

  • Farmers
  • USAA
  • Geico
  • Allstate
  • SafeCo
  • State Farm
  • MetLife
  • American Family

The level of coverage available for ridesharing varies. Some of these companies won’t provide coverage while a customer is in the car, others will with a surcharge, but none of these companies will drop you for offering ride-sharing services.

Colorado was the first to pass a regulatory bill for ridesharing companies in 2014.

Automation on the Road

Red Light Cameras

Colorado does have red-light cameras installed across the state. Take a look at this table for the details.

Colorado Red Light Cameras
Stats on Colorado Red Light CamerasDetails
Statewide or localized?Statewide (requires local ordinance)
Violations?Red light
Who receives citation?Vehicle owner
Who is liable?Driver
What image is captured?Tag and driver
Penalty?$75, no points
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Red light cameras are prevalent in Colorado. The monetary penalty for running a red light and getting caught on camera is $75 but no points are added to your license. However, if you are stopped by law enforcement in person for a red light offense, the fine is $110 and four points will be assessed to your record.

Speed Enforcement Cameras

Colorado also has speed enforcement cameras installed across the state. Take a look at this table for the details.

Colorado Automated Speed Enforcement Cameras
Stats on Colorado Automated Speed Enforcement CamerasDetails
Statewide or localized?Restricted to construction and school zones, residential areas, or adjacent to a municipal park; requires local ordinance and officer must be present
Violations?Speed
Citations issued to whom?Owner
Who is liable?Driver
What image is captured?Tag and Driver
Penalty?$40 maximum fine ($80 in school zones), no points, warning only for first violation within 10 mph of speed limit
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Speed enforcement cameras are also used in Colorado. Again, if you are stopped in person by an officer, four points will be added to your license and there will be a heftier fine to pay to the tune of $151.

Puffing Laws

Puffing a joint in Colorado may be legal; however, puffing your vehicle is not. You may be asking, “What is exactly puffing your vehicle?”

When it’s cold outside and you start your vehicle to warm it up while you go back inside—that’s called “puffing” and in Colorado puffing is illegal. The law is in place to supposedly prevent auto theft.

Watch this video to learn more.

Note: The exception is if you use a remote starter and your vehicle is locked without the keys inserted into the ignition.

What are the safety laws in Colorado?

Encouraging safety and eliminating catastrophes are the ultimate goals of all traffic laws. The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) has created an online portal brimming with resources promoting useful safety tidbits and guides.

In accordance with the National Highway Traffic Saftey Administration (NHTSA), Colorado developed the “Moving Towards Zero Deaths” Highway Safety Plan in 2014 as an additional resource for drivers.

DUI Laws

The first three DUI offenses are classified as misdemeanors. The fourth and following offenses are class 4 felonies. There is no official look-back period, so any DUI, no matter how far in the past can be considered in your sentence.

Colorado has two levels of intoxicated driving offenses:

  • Driving Under the Influence (DUI) – Blood alcohol content 0.08 percent or higher
  • Driving While Ability Impaired (DWAI) – Blood alcohol content 0.05 percent to 0.07 percent

Colorado DUI Penalties
Penalty Type First Driving While Ability
Impaired (DWAI) Violation
First Driving Under the Influence (DUI) ViolationSecond DUI or DWAI ViolationThird and Subsequent DUI and DWAI Violations
Revoked LicenseEight points on licenseNine monthsOne yearTwo years
ImprisonmentTwo days to 180 daysFive days to one year10 days to one year60 days to one year
Fine$200-$500$600-$1000$600-$1500$600-$1500
Community Service24 to 48 hours24 to 48 hours48 to 120 hours48 to 120 hours
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A law went into effect recently eliminating a loophole and mandating all persons with a felony DUI conviction to spend time behind bars.

Marijuana-Impaired Driving Laws

Driving under the influence of drugs is illegal and is subject to the same penalties as driving under the influence of alcohol.

Distracted Driving Laws

Like most states, Colorado has distracted driving laws in place to keep drivers safe on the road by restricting cellphone usage.

Colorado Cellphone and Texting Laws
Cellphone and Texting RestrictionsDetails
Hand-held banNo
Young drivers all cellphone banUnder 18 years old
Texting banAll drivers
EnforcementPrimary
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If you’re caught violating the distracted driving laws in Colorado, the penalties are as follows:

Colorado Penalties for Cellphone Use While Driving
Driver Type First Cellphone Use Offense Second and Subsequent Cell Phone Use Offenses
Minor Drivers (all cellphone use)Class A traffic infraction
One point on license
$50 fine
One point on license
$100 fine
Adult Drivers (text messaging)Class 2 misdemeanor traffic offense
Four points on license
$300 fine
Bodily injury or proximate cause of death to another, class 1 misdemeanor
Four points on license
$1000 fine and/or up to one year imprisonment
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Follow the cellphone and texting laws in Colorado. It’s not just about the penalties; it’s dangerous to drive while distracted.

Points System

Like many states, Colorado has a points system in place that tracks driving infractions. Too many points accrued in a specific time frame can mean suspension of your driver’s license. Colorado also has different thresholds for different driver types.

Take a look at this table for an overview of the points system structure for drivers under the age of 18.

Colorado Points System for Drivers Under the Age of 18
Time Frame for Points AccrualNumber of Points Required for License Suspension
Within 12 months6
At any point before turning 187
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This table summarizes the points system structure for drivers between the ages of 18 and 21.

Colorado Points System for Drivers Ages 18 to 21
Time Frame for Points AccrualNumber of Points Required for License Suspension
Within 12 months9
Within 24 months12
At any point between ages 18 and 2114
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Take a look at this table to see the points system structure for drivers 21 and older.

Colorado Points System for Drivers 21 and Older
Time Frame for Points AccrualNumber of Points Required for License Suspension
Within 12 months12
Within 24 months18
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Regardless of your age, it’s important to follow the rules of the road to avoid a driver’s license suspension.

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Colorado Can’t-Miss Facts

Next, we’ll take a look at some interesting nuggets of knowledge about Colorado. You won’t need the Colorado car insurance Reddit page when we’re done.

What does vehicle theft look like in Colorado?

Even in the safest cities and states, you need to be cautious of potential vehicle thefts.

Top Make and Model for Theft

Sedans manufactured by Honda and full-size pickup trucks are the top targets for thievery by burglars in Colorado.

Vehicle Theft by City

Now, we’ll look at the number of thefts in each of these cities.

Top 10 Cities in Colorado for Vehicle Theft
CityNumber of Vehicle Thefts
Denver3,487
Colorado Springs1,928
Aurora1,000
Lakewood623
Pueblo528
Thornton352
Westminster322
Arvada197
Greeley186
Commerce City183
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As you might expect, cities like Denver that have a higher population density have higher vehicle theft rates.

What are common road dangers in Colorado?

There are a number of factors that may affect your safety behind the wheel. Read through the following sections to learn more.

Fatality Rates by County

We’ve collected NHTSA accident fatality data on every county in Colorado across a five-year span. Take a look.

NHTSA Colorado Traffic Fatalities by County
County NameFatalities in 2013Fatalities in 2014Fatalities in 2015Fatalities in 2015Fatalities in 2016
Adams County3332446064
Arapahoe County2130374645
Boulder County1216192431
Denver County4042525449
El Paso County6353484877
Garfield County7881021
Jefferson County4342554841
Larimer County2024334436
Pueblo County1419122034
Weld County3555555566
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El Paso and Denver counties are in the top three most fatal counties for all five years.

Fatality Rates Rural Vs. Urban

We also looked at fatalities based on urban versus rural roads.

NHTSA Colorado Traffic Fatalities on Urban and Rural Roads
Type of RoadwayFatalities in 2008Fatalities in 2009Fatalities in 2010Fatalities in 2011Fatalities in 2012Fatalities in 2013Fatalities in 2014Fatalities in 2015Fatalities in 2016Fatalities in 2017
Rural296252247227233244228260266277
Urban252213203220241238260285342369
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Urban and rural fatalities vary from year-to-year, with some years having higher rates for urban roads, while other years the fatality rate is higher for rural roads.

Fatalities by Person Type

Take a look at this table to see fatalities by person type.

NHTSA Colorado Traffic Fatalities by Person Type
Person TypeVehicles TypeFatalities In 2013Fatalities In 2014Fatalities In 2015Fatalities In 2016Fatalities In 2017
OccupantsPassenger Car141176163187199
Light Truck - Pickup7756776678
Light Truck - Utility85708585104
Light Truck - Van146212427
Light Truck - Other00102
Large Truck1110131826
Bus00011
Total Occupants331319364383437
MotorcyclistsMotorcycle8794106125103
NonoccupantsPedestrian5063597992
Bicyclist and Other Cyclist1210131616
Other/Unknown Nonoccupants22550
Total Nonoccupants647577100108
Occupants, Motorcyclists, and NonoccupantsTotal Traffic-Related Fatalities482488547608648
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Car passengers face the highest fatality rates in California.

Fatalities by Crash Type

Crash type is also an indicator of fatality type. This table summarizes data in Colorado for a five-year span.

NHTSA Colorado Fatalities by Crash Type
Crash TypeFatalities in 2013Fatalities in 2014Fatalities in 2015Fatalities in 2016Fatalities in 2017
Total Fatalities (All Crashes)482488547608648
Single Vehicle284273305344335
Involving a Large Truck5663648687
Involving Speeding151168217211230
Involving a Rollover197166195212228
Involving a Roadway Departure287285304295330
Involving an Intersection (or Intersection Related)118127153200190
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Single vehicles are by far the most fatal accidents in Colorado, with factors like rollovers and roadway departures being some of the biggest contributors.

Fatalities Involving Speeding by County

To see which counties face the most fatalities due to speeding, take a look at this table.

NHTSA Colorado Fatalities by County Involving Speeding
County NameFatalities in 2015Fatalities in 2016Fatalities in 2017Three-Year Total
Douglas County48820
Garfield County561021
Denver County28221565
Pueblo County441624
Larimer County9151640
Arapahoe County17191753
Jefferson County22201860
Weld County25112056
Adams County17192056
El Paso County15222966
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The top counties for fatalities are again El Paso and Denver counties.

Fatalities in Crashes Involving an Alcohol-Impaired Driver by County

To see which counties face the most fatalities due to alcohol-impaired drivers, take a look at this table.

NHTSA Colorado Fatalities by County Involving an Alcohol-Impaired Driver
County NameFatalities in 2015Fatalities in 2016Fatalities in 2017Three-Year Total
El Paso County17202461
Denver County15182053
Weld County19131345
Adams County11151844
Jefferson County1991341
Arapahoe County12131338
Larimer County8121131
Pueblo County331016
Garfield County37515
Boulder County53412
Douglas County45312
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The three most fatal counties were Weld, El Paso, and Denver counties.

What is the EMS response time in Colorado?

Take a look at this table to see what EMS response times are like in Colorado.

Rural versus Urban EMS Response Time in Colorado
Location of IncidentTime of Crash to EMS NotificationNotification to ArrivalArrival at Scene to Hospital ArrivalTime of Crash to Time of Hospital Arrival
Rural7.33 minutes12.01 minutes36.68 minutes48.96 minutes
Urban1.33 minutes5.09 minutes22.23 minutes28.16 minutes
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It’s no surprise that urban response times are significantly faster than rural ones. Rural emergency response often has significantly larger territory for which they are responsible. Additionally, road quality is not always consistent, which can also cause a slower response.

What is transportation like in Colorado?

How does the commute look for Colorado residents? How many own a car? How do they get to work? We’ll answer those questions next.

Car Ownership

We looked at DataUSA information to find out the average car ownership rates per householder in Colorado. Take a look.

  • One vehicle: 18 percent in Colorado, versus 20.2 percent nationally
  • Two vehicles: 40.9 percent in Colorado, versus 40.3 percent nationally
  • Three vehicles: 23.7 percent in Colorado, versus 21.5 percent nationally
  • Four vehicles: 10.1 percent in Colorado, versus 9.23 percent nationally
  • Five or more vehicles:5.22 percent in Colorado, versus 4.56 percent nationally

Colorado’s vehicle ownership rates are higher for two, three, four, and five or more vehicles, while the national average is higher for households that own one vehicle.

Commute Time

Colorado drivers are fortunate that their average commute of 23.7 minutes is lower than the national average of 25.7 minutes by about 8 percent.

Commuter Transportation

Residents of the mile high city prefer to drive alone. According to DataUSA, 74.9 percent of drivers commute alone, followed by 8.56 percent that work at home, and 8.55 percent carpool.

Traffic Congestion in Colorado

Denver ranks 27th in North America and 136th in the world for traffic congestion in major cities.

In order to enjoy all the wonderful activities across the state, you will have to travel and traverse through a diversity of roads, landscapes, and terrains. And whether you choose to navigate the state in a pickup truck or in an RV or atop an ATV, you will want to make sure that you have the proper insurance for your vehicle and for your specific needs.

Ready to buy Colorado car insurance? Find the best Colorado car insurance company by entering your ZIP code below and comparing quotes from top-rated insurers in Colorado side-by-side for free. This will be especially helpful with the Colorado auto insurance rate increase that’s been occurring over the past few years.