Getting in a car accident is headache enough, but when it happens with someone who has no insurance, it’s even more complicated. This week, we answer a question about what happens to those drivers without insurance.
Frustration after an accident with an uninsured motorist
Many of us have learned the hard way if you get hit by a driver with no insurance, you have to claim it on your own insurance. Carol emailed asking about uninsured motorist claims. She says - claiming an uninsured motorist on your insurance of course causes higher rates to pay for all those not following laws.
Question: Carol asks, “What are the laws about uninsured motorists? It seems like nothing is being done.”
Answer: Carol, we feel your frustration. You may remember, we rode along with Harris County Precinct One Deputy Constables as they pulled over people for having illegal paper tags.
All three of those people pulled over also did not have proof of insurance or an id. They were ticketed and their cars were towed away. We looked into what happens next and found out that Texas does have some of the strictest laws about uninsured motorists.
First offense = ticketed, fine up to $300 + yearly penalty of $250 for three years
Repeat offenses = ticketed, license and registration suspended, up to $1,000 fine + yearly penalty for three years
An uninsured driver at fault in an accident could also have to pay for the damages out of pocket - or the insurance company could sue. Here’s info about the required financial responsibility insurance certificate uninsured drivers are also required to get after they are involved in an accident or caught without insurance for another reason. And remember, driving without insurance puts you at risk for being fully responsible for high repair or hospital bills.
Related: Amy explains what to do after you are in a car accident.