Can I face criminal charges for an at-fault accident without insurance coverage?

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Dec 1, 2010

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Insurance Question from Elizabethtown, KY

Asked on 12/01/2010

Can I face criminal charges for an at-fault accident without insurance coverage? NULL

Answer given on December 03, 2010

All states require that all drivers carry liability insurance on their vehicles.  While the rules are somewhat different in each state, if you are at fault in an accident you can, and most likely will be given a ticket for not having insurance.  If you injured someone in that accident then criminal charges can be filed.  You can also be held financially responsible for any damages or injuries you caused in the accident.

Most states require fairly low limits of liability for drivers.  Driving is a privilege, and not a right.  If you drive a car, you should be responsible enough to purchase insurance on that car.  Insurance companies will let you make payments to make the insurance more affordable.

If you have an accident without insurance you are only increasing the possible cost of the insurance, since you will have to provide proof of insurance in order to keep your drivers license.  If you continue to drive without a license, you are subject to criminal charges if you are caught.

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