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What Happens If You Cause a Car Accident Without Insurance?

With today’s economy, it can be tempting to cut some costs by doing away with your auto insurance premiums. After all, you have a valid driver’s license, and you are a careful driver. But what happens if you cause a car accident without insurance?

Car insurance is designed to protect accident victims from the financial repercussions of an accident. Below, we review what might happen if you get into a crash without coverage.

If you have been injured in a car accident, contact one of our Los Angeles Personal Injury Attorneys.


California Laws on Auto Insurance

The California Vehicle Code Section 16028 stipulates the state’s financial responsibility laws, which state you must have auto liability insurance or post a cash bond with the DMV if you have a driver’s license. You must also carry proof or acceptable alternative proof of your insurance with you at all times when driving. Additionally, you must produce the proof when:

  • You get into an accident.
  • A police officer asks for it.
  • You register your car.
  • You renew your car registration.

Your proof of liability insurance may be a card, paper, or app issued by your insurance company. It often includes your name, policy number, dates of coverage, and details about your insurer.

If you are found to be driving without proof of auto insurance, you will be considered to be breaking the law and will be subject to some penalties.


Penalties for Driving Without Insurance

The penalties for driving without insurance in California, as set out in the Vehicle Code Section 16029, will usually vary depending on the circumstances. For example, was the lack of insurance discovered while you were receiving a ticket or during an accident?

The statutory penalties for driving without insurance apply in California whether you are a resident or merely driving in the state. They may include:

  • A fine of $100 to $200 for a first offense
  • A fine of $200 and $500 for a second offense
  • Your car being towed and impounded.
  • A license suspension for up to 4 years
  • Additional fees


Repeat incidents may result in even more severe penalties.


Compensation for Uninsured Drivers

California imposes limits on the amount of compensation an uninsured driver can collect for damages in a car accident. Proposition 213, or the no-pay no-play law, states that an uninsured driver cannot sue the at-fault party in an accident for non-economic losses such as pain and suffering.

While the driver can still recover medical bills and car repair costs, they may also be required to deduct $10,000 before claiming property damage.


Contact a Los Angeles Personal Injury Attorney

What happens if you cause a car accident without insurance? If you get into an accident without coverage, you may be forced to cover the injured party’s damages out of pocket. You may also face penalties, such as fines and jail time because driving without insurance in California is against the law. In the event you were injured, you may be unable to get compensation.

If you or a loved one has been injured in an auto accident, our Los Angeles Personal Injury Attorneys can help you recover your deserved compensation. Contact ElDabe Ritter today online or at 888-544-2136 to schedule your free initial consultation.