The Ohio law states that you can’t legally operate a vehicle unless you have valid insurance coverage that meets the state’s minimum requirements. The other option is to show proof that you meet the state’s other financial responsibility standards.

Liability Insurance Requirements for Private Passenger Vehicles

Most residents choose auto liability insurance as they consider it the simplest and smartest way to meet the state’s financial responsibility requirements.

However, the liability protection you purchase must at least meet the following standards:

  • $25,000 property damage coverage.
  • $25,000 bodily injury coverage per person.
  • $50,000 bodily injury coverage for an accident involving two or more persons.

Remember there is also an option to get higher insurance coverage if you want.
Cost can be an issue, especially if you are a younger driver. See the form at the top of this page. It can help you get insurance for your vehicle and save money as well.

Financial Responsibility

Providing proof of financial responsibility means that you can handle the minimum insurance requirements needed to drive a vehicle within the state. Most vehicle operators do this through auto liability insurance. However, that also can be done by providing any of the following:

  • Certificate of proof of financial responsibility signed by your provider.
  • $30,000 bond issued by an authorized surety company.
  • Bureau of Motor Vehicle (BMV) certificate showing you have at least $30,000 in cash or government bonds deposited with the State Treasurer.
  • $30,000 BMV-issued bond certificate, signed by two people owning real estate with equity of at least $60,000.
  • BMV-issued certificate of self-insurance. This is available only to those who own at least 26 motor vehicles registered in their name or a company’s name.


In case you don’t have proof of insurance, to present, when a law enforcement officer requests that, you could face harsh penalties. Here’s how you can provide proof of your financial responsibility:

  • Showing your proof in traffic court.
  • Sending a copy of your proof to the address listed on the notice.

The BMV also randomly selects drivers to show their proof of insurance by sending a letter to them, and asking for the proof. You just need to follow the instructions given in the letter to comply with the request.

If you fail to show your proof of insurance, your license and vehicle registration can be suspended. If you’re a first-time offender, you will lose your driving privileges for 90 days. If you’re a repeat offender, the suspension ranges from one to two years.

Last updated on Thursday, October 15 2020.