Do you like to gamble? If you answered yes, there is one type of gambling you should avoid: Driving without car insurance.

According to the personal injury lawyers at, the outcomes they witness through their work are devastating financially. You assume a great risk if you decide to operate a motor vehicle without purchasing auto insurance.

Forty-nine states plus the District of Columbia require car owners to buy auto insurance. Although the mandatory minimum amount of car insurance coverage varies among the states, the requirements for every state include coverage for bodily injury liability, as well as property damage liability.

Man Driving. How Risky Is Driving Without Insurance?

What Are The Penalties For Uninsured Motorists?

If you cause an auto collision and you do not have car insurance coverage, you might face a civil lawsuit not only for committing one or more acts of negligence but also for failing to purchase the minimum amount of car insurance as required by your state. However, facing a civil lawsuit is not as common as some of the other types of penalties for uninsured motorists.


Here is where driving without car insurance not only gets risky, it also can get expensive. A majority of states have increased the number of fines levied against uninsured motorists. Advanced scanning technology allows law enforcement officers to detect uninsured motorists on the road, while at the same time issuing a citation that requires the payment of a substantial fine.

Legal Fees And Court Costs

If you face a civil lawsuit because you drove without car insurance, you can expect to pay court costs and legal fees. Since your case does not involve awarding monetary damages, your attorney most likely wants to get paid by the hour. Hiring a lawyer on an hourly legal fee basis can quickly push your legal costs into thousands of dollars. Court costs also can be substantial, especially if your civil trial lasts more than just a day or two.

Property Damage

If you caused a car accident without auto insurance, you can expect to pay for the property damage incurred by the other party. Depending on the impact of the crash, property damage bills can exceed $5,000. You also might assume legal liability for other types of property damage, such as the damage done to private property or a computing device.

Towing And Impoundment Fees

Whether law enforcement catches you without auto insurance while you are driving or discovers the lack of insurance at the scene of an accident, you can expect to pay a significant amount of money in towing and impoundment fees. You have to buy car insurance just to get your vehicle out of impoundment.

Say Goodbye To Your Driver’s License

One of the biggest risks involved when driving without car insurance is the potential for the state to suspend your driver’s license. Without a driver’s license, you no longer can commute to work, which means driving without car insurance can negatively impact your income. The state might decide to seize your motor vehicle tags as well.

Spend Time In  Jail

Although you might get away with just a fine for a first offense, repeatedly getting caught without car insurance can land you in jail. Although not written in stone, some states leave the incarceration option up to judges that take a dim view of non-compliance.

If you drive without car insurance in a no-fault state, you must pay out-of-pocket for all the costs that are associated with a motor vehicle collision.

Driving a car in a tunnel

How Do States Treat Uninsured Motorists That Are Involved In A Car Accident?

Most states handle uninsured motorists after an auto accident in one of two ways: The uninsured motorist was at-fault or the uninsured motorist was not at fault.


Causing a car crash without insurance might designate you as a high-risk driver when you finally apply for auto insurance coverage. The state might pursue criminal charges, while one or more parties have the right to file a civil lawsuit against you for negligence. If you cause a car collision without insurance, you can expect the infraction to remain on your driving record for many years to comes

Not At-Fault

Some states operate under the no pay, no play model when it comes to compensating uninsured drivers that get involved in a not-at-fault collision. This means you do not receive compensation to pay for repairs to your vehicle and to cover the costs of medical bills. Although the legal ramifications are not as severe when you are considered not at fault, the financial repercussions remain incredibly serious.

The House Has The Upper Hand.

Although the odds appear in your favor when you play blackjack or roll the dice, the fact remains that the house has the upper hand. If you drive without car insurance, the odds of you paying for your negligence down the road are high. The house, which is law enforcement, typically wins when it comes to uninsured motorists.

Do the right thing and purchase car insurance for your vehicle. Refer to the Insurance Information Institute to determine the minimum car insurance you must buy in the state where you live.

Driving Without Insurance FAQs

What Happens If You Get Caught Driving Without Insurance In Missouri?

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Depending on the circumstance, you could incur serious penalties if you're caught driving without the required insurance in Missouri. You could lose your driving privileges for an entire year and be forced to pay a $400 reinstatement fee, on top of a $500 fine and/or 15 days in jail.

Can You Drive Without Insurance In St. Louis Missouri?

It is illegal to drive a motor vehicle in Missouri without automobile liability insurance. ... The court will send the conviction to the Department of Revenue and the conviction will be entered on the driver's driving record.

What Happens If You Get Pulled Over For No Insurance In St. Louis?

Yes, if you are stopped by the police on a road and they find you have no insurance they can take the vehicle from you and charge you for transportation and storage. If you do not reclaim your car within 14 days, it can be sent for scrap.

How Long Can You Go Without Car Insurance Before Being Penalized?

There appears to be a small penalty for drivers with a lapsed policy of fewer than 30 days, but that can dramatically increase if you let it go on for longer, an average of about 35% more per year. That can translate to hundreds of dollars that you could overpay.

Can You Get Points For no insurance?

According to the Road Traffic Act, any person who keeps their car on a road must have a valid insurance policy; parking on the road counts as a 'use' of the road. The offence of keeping a vehicle without insurance, as opposed to using it or driving it, carries a fine but no penalty points.

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