What Happens If I Am In A Car Accident With No Insurance?
If you are in a car accident with no insurance, a plethora of consequences will immediately follow. There are a variety of reasons why a driver would drive without insurance. These reasons include:
- Affordability – The auto insurance rates are too high. Factors contributing to a high premium are based on the driver’s age, make and model of the car, marital status, and driver’s motor vehicle history. Drivers who only carry liability insurance are more likely to get coverage on their vehicles due to the reduced rates.
- Undrivability – Although car insurance is mandatory, an undrivable vehicle usually is not insured. Proof of vehicle damage by a licensed auto repair shop must be filed with the insurance carrier and the Nevada DMV to cancel existing coverage.
- Policy/Coverage Changes – In some cases, such as the recent policy limit change in Nevada, insurance companies can change policy terms and coverage limits. Most policyholders are notified prior to the end of the coverage period in order to explore other options. During this time, it is imperative that you search for alternative insurance providers.
The Different Types of Car Insurance Coverages
The Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) requires that auto liability insurance policies carry minimum coverage of $25,000 for bodily injury or death of one person in any one accident; $50,000 for bodily injury or death of two or more persons on any one accident; and $20,000 for injury to or destruction of property of others in any one accident. That is the required minimum. There are a variety of other types of coverages included in the typical full-coverage insurance policy. These types include:
- Bodily Injury Liability* – This covers accident-related injuries the policyholder causes to other drivers and passengers.
- Property Damage Liability – This covers the repair bill for accident-related damages to others’ vehicles, buildings, or other property caused by the policyholder.
- Collision – The reimbursement for damages to the vehicle regardless of who was at fault.
- Personal Injury Protection – Payment for injuries sustained to the driver and passengers of the policyholder’s vehicle.
- Comprehensive – Payment for non-accident related vehicular damages, such as vandalism and/or natural disaster.
- Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage – This covers the cost of injuries or damages from an accident incurred by an uninsured driver, a hit-and-run driver, or an underinsured driver.
Driving Without Insurance
If you are driving without insurance, you risk severe consequences in the event you are a) pulled over, or b) involved in an accident.
Every state has a different penalty for driving uninsured, but most states DO require drivers to carry proof of insurance at all times. Uninsured drivers can be penalized up to $5,000 and have their license revoked, or even be put in jail.
Auto insurance is intended for the vehicle, regardless of the driver’s status. In other words, if driver Bob is a friend of Bill and wants to borrow his vehicle, any accidents that occur while Bob is driving will be covered under Bill’s insurance policy (based on coverage provisions). Bob could be penalized legally if he was at fault, but the financial responsibility lies with Bill’s insurance company due to vehicle ownership. Bill could then sue Bob to recoup the losses, so consulting a Las Vegas car accident lawyer would be Bill’s best option for recovery.
- If you are hit by a driver in a car accident with no insurance, suing for reimbursement through an attorney would be the only option for monetary recovery.
- If an uninsured driver is hit by an insured driver, the insured driver’s insurance company is liable for damages.
In other words, the fault of the driver determines who is responsible for damages and injuries sustained from an accident. Penalties for accidents vary by state, so soliciting the services of an insurance agent, in addition to obtaining legal counsel, is highly advisable.
Read: Can I switch Personal Injury Lawyers?
If you or a loved one have been involved in a car accident with no insurance, we encourage you to contact us today for a free, no-obligation accident evaluation.