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United States Army
Central In and Out Processing
2030 14th Street
Fort Polk, LA 71459
Figuring out the best way to get around is important when you’re in a new installation. It’s useful to understand the various regulations, local laws as well as license and registration requirements. Whether you need a driver’s license, transport a car overseas or want help buying a car, there are people to assist you at your new installation. Check out the topics below to find information and regulations on vehicles and registration at your base.
Louisiana is a "Fault" Car Accident State
Louisiana follows a traditional "fault"-based system when it comes to financial responsibility for losses stemming from a car accident: injuries, lost income, vehicle damage, and so on. This means that the person who was at fault for causing the car accident is also responsible for any resulting harm (from a practical standpoint, the at-fault driver’s insurance carrier will absorb these losses, up to policy limits).
In Louisiana, a person who suffers any kind of injury or damage due to an auto accident usually can proceed in one of three ways:
Note: In no-fault car insurance states, a claimant doesn't usually have this same range of options. After a car accident in a no-fault state, you must turn to the personal injury protection coverage of your own car insurance policy for payment of medical bills and other out-of-pocket losses, regardless of who caused the crash. Only if your injuries reach a certain threshold can you step outside of no-fault and make a claim directly against the at-fault driver. But Louisiana drivers don't need to worry about no-fault after an in-state accident.
Minimum Liability Car Insurance in Louisiana
The required minimum amounts of liability car insurance coverage in Louisiana are:
This basic coverage pays the medical bills, property damage bills, and other costs of drivers, passengers, and pedestrians who are injured or have their vehicle damaged in a car accident you cause, up to coverage limits. You can (and in some situations should) carry more coverage to protect you in case a serious crash results in significant car accident injuries and vehicle damage. Remember, once policy limits are exhausted, you are personally on the financial hook, so higher insurance limits can help protect your personal assets in the event of a serious crash.
Your liability coverage will kick in if any family member is driving your vehicle, or if you've given someone else permission to use it. It will likely also cover you if you get into an accident in a rental car.
Remember that the liability coverage we discussed here doesn't apply to your own injuries or vehicle damage after a Louisiana car accident. You'll need different (additional) coverage for that if you're involved in a car accident and no one else's coverage applies to your losses. For example, collision coverage (optional in Louisiana) can pay for repairs to (or replacement of) your damaged vehicle after a car accident.
Note that collision or comprehensive might be required under the terms of a vehicle lease or financing agreement. And while not required in Louisiana, uninsured motorist coverage can really save the day if you're in a car accident with a motorist who is driving without insurance, or if you're involved in a hit and run accident. Learn more about different types of car insurance coverage.
Penalties for Driving Without Insurance in Louisiana
According to the Louisiana Department of Insurance, driving without insurance -- or being involved in a crash without insurance -- can result in the imposition of a fine of $500 to $1,000, plus the suspension of driving privileges, impoundment of a vehicle, revocation of registration, or cancellation of license plates.
What's more, if you drive without insurance in Louisiana, the state's "No Pay, No Play" law may also prohibit you from collecting certain amounts after a car accident, even if the other driver is at fault; specifically:
Car Insurance Cancellation
Your auto insurance company can cancel your insurance policy within 60 days of purchase.
If your policy is canceled, they must notify you within:
After 60 days, your car insurance policy can be canceled ONLY if:
Again, your insurance company must notify you of any cancellation or non-renewal:
If your policy is not renewed, you can request the reason in writing and expect a refund of any pre-paid premiums within 30 days.
Installation Regulation and Registration
ID Cards --All military personnel, dependents, contractors and vendors are required to register through Defense Biometric Identification System (DBIDS). This system immediately alerts officers that person is authorized access to the installation. For more information, call 337-531-7303 or 337-531-1746.
Corvious: NOISE/QUIET HOURS
Resident, other authorized occupants and guests will not disturb the peaceful enjoyment of the community. Resident shall keep the volume of any radio, stereo, TV, musical instrument or electronic device in their Home or vehicle sufficiently reduced at all times so as not to disturb other Residents. Residents shall not conduct or permit vocal or instrumental practice or instruction at the home without prior written consent of the Neighborhood Office. As per Command Policy Memorandum DES-02 – Noise Abatement; quiet hours are from 2200 to 0500 Sunday evening – Friday morning and 2400 to 0600 Friday evening - Sunday morning and should be observed by all residents and their guests that reside or visit homes at Fort Polk. Residents are required to control their pets to avoid disturbance during the quiet hours as defined above as well as from becoming a nuisance due to prolonged or frequent barking.
Weapons Registration -- All personnel residing on post must register their privately owned weapons within three working days. A weapon is defined as all firearms, pellet guns, BB guns, knives with blades in excess of 3.5 inches, and archery bows. Items such as switchblade knives, Chinese fighting instruments (throwing stars, nunchakus), and explosive devices are prohibited.
For registration each applicant must submit FP Form 563 with the make, model, caliber, and barrel length of each weapon. The actual weapon need not be brought in. Individuals residing in family housing may retain their weapons in their quarters after registration. Residents of troop barracks must store their weapons in their unit arms room.
Louisiana Safety Laws
The Louisiana Highway Safety Commission oversees the state's highway safety program to reduce the frequency of accidents and injuries.
Our Louisiana Safety Laws page covers a range of Louisiana rules and laws related to traffic safety, including child car seats, seat belts, headlights, cell phones and texting, motorcycles, and other information to help keep you safe on the road.
Louisiana Seat Belt Laws
You must wear a seat belt at all times while riding in a vehicle in Louisiana, regardless of whether you are the driver or a passenger. Failure to do so will result in tickets and fines, the amounts of which are determined by LA state law.
Child safety seats are required in every state, and there is an important reason why. The Louisiana HSC believes child safety seats provide infants and young children the absolute best protection in the car.
If your child fits within more than one of the below categories, due either to age or weight, please place him or her in the more protective option.
Per guidelines set up by the NHTSA, the LA DHS recommends keeping your child in the back seat through the age of 12 years old at least.
If you're convicted of a child safety seat offense, you have the possibility of being ticketed and fined, with your fine amounts increasing for subsequent violations.
You can also learn more about best practices in child safety seat usage from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
LA Electronic Devices & Texting Laws
New drivers with “learner's" or “intermediate" licenses and those under 17 years old are prohibited from using a wireless communication device while driving in Louisiana. The maximum fine for new drivers who violate the cell phone law is $175.
Louisiana also has a statewide ban on the use of wireless devices for writing, sending, or reading text-based communications while driving, regardless of age.
School Zones and Cell Phone Use
If you're driving through a school zone during posted hours, it is against the law to use your cell phone or other mobile device for any reason, including:
The only exceptions to this rule are if:
If you are caught illegally using your cell phone in a school zone, you will be charged with a moving violation. The fine for a first offense is $175 and any second or subsequent offenses carry a fine of up to $500.
Motorcycle & Bicycle Laws in Louisiana
Louisiana Helmet Laws
All Louisiana motorcycle riders and passengers must wear a safety helmet designed with lining, padding and visor, and secured properly with a chinstrap while the vehicle is in motion. This law also applies to motor-driven cycles and motorized bicycles.
There are NO mandatory helmet laws for bicyclists in Louisiana, except for children riders or passengers under 12 years old.
If your child weighs less than 40 lbs. or is less than 40 inches in height, he or she must be properly secured to a restraining seat while riding as a passenger.
Motorcycle Equipment Laws
Motorcycle Safety Courses
Louisiana residents may attend several Motorcycle Operator Training Courses appropriate for beginner, intermediate, and advanced riders.
The Basic Rider course is 15 1/2 hours and covers the skills and mental attitude necessary for navigating the roads safely during traffic, and other practical exercises. The course is divided into 2 sessions on Saturday and Sunday in a controlled, off-street environment. Motorcycles used by trainees may not exceed 550 cc.
The Intermediate course is 5 hours and takes place within an on-range course. Instructors focus on cornering, braking, evasive maneuvering, and risk-management techniques. You must have first taken the basic rider course, or already have a motorcycle license/endorsement.
The Advanced course is 8 hours Motorcycles must be street legal (i.e., registered, insured and inspected).
Consider taking the Advanced course if you're a skilled, properly licensed motorcyclist who would like to sharpen the following skills:
Once you are assigned to a course, all submitted fees are NON-REFUNDABLE unless the Louisiana Department of Public Safety cancels the course. You can view the schedules for each course at the LSP course scheduling page, and download the course application.
For more information on scheduling, please call 225-658-7522.
Unattended Kids & Pets in Louisiana
Louisiana law mandates a fine of up to $500 or imprisonment of up to 6 months, or both for first-time offenders who leave a child or a pet unattended in a motor vehicle. For subsequent offenses, the fine up to $5,000 and/or jail time of no less than 1 year.
If you see a child left unattended in a vehicle, please contact local law enforcement or dial 911 immediately. If you encounter a vehicle with an unattended pet inside, please contact your local police department or animal control unit.