Which Gender Pays More for Car Insurance?

Most people won't be surprised to learn that men pay more for car insurance in most states, but some states don't allow the practice.

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When comparing insurance rates with family members or friends, you may have encountered a few perplexing differences and had some questions. For instance, you may wonder which gender pays more for car insurance. It's a fascinating question that insurance companies may explain with statistics — or even analysis — of behavioral patterns. In truth, there are many factors that affect car insurance rates, but how exactly does gender play a role? Here are the key findings.

Which Gender Pays More for Car Insurance?

In many states, it's a general fact that men pay more for auto insurance than women overall. Statistics show that men are generally higher risk drivers, resulting in insurance companies charging more to insure them. However, this isn't the case in every state.

Why Don't All States Charge Men More for Car Insurance?

Certain states disallow the practice of setting insurance rates based on certain factors. Several states have laws stating auto insurers can't use gender as a determining factor. In these states, insurers must use other factors to set their rates.

In theory, this means men shouldn't pay more for auto insurance than women based on gender alone. Other factors may result in some men spending more than women on auto insurance in these states.

One study that analyzed more than one million car insurance quotes found that states allowing gender to be a factor in determining rates resulted in premiums for men that were 10% higher than for women. In states where gender can't be used for setting rates, that 10% premium decreased. However, men still pay 6% more for auto insurance than women in these states.

Even so, insurers may charge some women more for auto insurance than men. Ultimately, it depends on the complex rating formulas each insurance company uses. Each company has different formulas, so it pays to shop around to find the best auto insurance prices.

Which States Don't Allow Using Gender to Set Car Insurance Rates?

States that do not currently allow using gender to determine auto insurance rates include:

  • California
  • Hawaii
  • Massachusetts
  • Maine
  • Michigan
  • North Carolina
  • Pennsylvania

Focus on Factors You Can Control

Thankfully, gender isn't the only factor used to determine your auto insurance rates. Insurers use a long list of elements to determine the final amount you must pay for insurance. You can work to make sure you get affordable rates by focusing on factors you can control, including the following:

  • Safe driving — Focus on driving carefully to avoid accidents that could result in claims and moving violations whenever possible. These events directly impact your auto insurance rates and are mostly controllable
  • Your credit history — You should also consider taking a look at your credit. While insurers don't use a traditional credit score, they may use information from your credit report to create an auto insurance score. Avoid negative credit behaviors, such as missing payments or maxing out your credit lines. You can also check your credit reports for errors and dispute any mistakes to have them removed from your report
  • Your car — The car you drive and how much you drive both impact rates. If you want the lowest auto insurance rates, you should find a vehicle for which insurers offer favorable rates
  • Different carriers have different rates — Don't forget to shop around with multiple car insurance companies. Each company may rate your risk differently. This can result in different rates for the same coverage. By picking the right company, you may be able to save on your auto insurance bill

While paying more for auto insurance due to gender (especially in 2022) isn't ideal, it's still a reality in most states. Focusing on the other factors you can change may help you save money on your auto insurance bill.

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Lance Cothern
I started reading everything I could about personal finance while I attended college. It turns out that was one of the smartest decisions I could have made. Now, I want to share that knowledge with you. Using what I've learned through my education and experience, I aim to help you make informed decisions throughout the car buying and lending process while saving money at the same time.