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  News Ranks Most and Least Expensive States for Car Insurance
3/6/2012 8:43:58 AM's 2012 study of average car insurance rates across the country reveals that Louisiana leads the nation in auto premiums. Last year's study showed Louisiana at No. 2, down a notch from the No. 1 perch in 2010.

Other expensive states are Oklahoma and Michigan, while Maine, Iowa and Wisconsin were the least expensive, according to

The rankings are based on’s 2012 car insurance comparison study, which also includes average premiums for more than 900 models.

Premiums can be affected by a variety of factors, including:

• Having a significant portion of uninsured drivers.
• A state’s insurance laws.
• The level of competition among carriers.
• Severe weather that produced above-average claims in the last year.

The highest-premium states in this year’s survey have their own particular trouble spots, according to

In Louisiana, auto insurance claims must reach $50,000 before they go to a jury trial. Lawsuits involving claims for less go before elected judges, who tend to side with the "little guy" (their constituents) over the insurance companies. Insurers then pass these costs on to consumers.

Oklahoma's high premiums are chalked up to uninsured drivers and storm losses.

Michigan's no-fault insurance system guarantees unlimited, lifetime medical benefits to car accident victims. Victims' insurance carriers pay the first $500,000, and then are reimbursed for any amount above that threshold by the Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association. This year’s assessment, which goes to support the claims association, is $145 for each insured vehicle, notes.

The rates shown below are for comparative purposes and are an average of premiums in each state for all 900-plus vehicles in's 2012 survey.

Louisiana: $2,536
Oklahoma: $2,047
Michigan: $2,013
West Virginia: $2,002
Washington, D.C.: $1,866
Montana: $1,856
Rhode Island: $1,830
Wyoming: $1,732
California: $1,709
Georgia: $1,694
Connecticut: $1,665
Texas: $1,661
Florida: $1,654
Delaware: $1,652
New Jersey: $1,608
Pennsylvania: $1,598
Hawaii: $1,594
Kentucky: $1,572
Mississippi: $1,502
Missouri: $1,455
Alaska: $1,431
North Dakota: $1,426
New York: $1,431
Kansas: $1,410
Massachusetts: $1,378
Maryland: $1,372
Alabama: $1,345
Arkansas: $1,334
Colorado: $1,322
Utah: $1,315
Washington: $1,305
South Dakota: $1,303
Indiana: $1,301
Virginia: $1,297
New Mexico: $1,274
Minnesota: $1,264
Nebraska: $1,244
Oregon: $1,241
Tennessee: $1,228
Nevada: $1,223
Illinois: $1,192
Arizona: $1,176
New Hampshire: $1,133
South Carolina: $1,108
Ohio: $1,099
Vermont: $1,063
North Carolina: $1,022
Idaho: $1,011
Wisconsin: $987
Iowa: $985
Maine: $889

More information:

For more about the states rankings, see the full article at

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