What if You Get Into a Car Accident Without Insurance
Like other states, it’s compulsory to purchase motor vehicle insurance in Ohio. You could be facing severe penalties if you have been involved in a vehicle accident and did not have insurance or proof of financial responsibility coverage. This is the case even if you are only a first-time offender, which is why you need to consider hiring an Ohio car accident attorney.
According to the Insurance Research Council, one in every eight drivers is uninsured. Unfortunately, those who aren’t insured are often involved in car accidents in Ohio. At The Henry Law Firm, our qualified attorney can evaluate your case to determine if you’re eligible to gain compensation. Even though Ohio has strict laws surrounding car accidents involving uninsured drivers, you could potentially recover damages if you were injured because of someone else’s negligence.
After reading our article surrounding what happens if you get into a car accident without insurance, you can speak with us to determine how being uninsured affects your case.
What Are the Vehicle Insurance Laws in Ohio?
In Ohio, you are responsible for submitting proof of liability insurance when you register your vehicle according to the rules set out by the Bureau of Motor Vehicles. Additionally, you will need to provide proof of continuous vehicle insurance throughout registration.
Interestingly, your minimum requirement for continuous vehicle insurance in Ohio is $25,000 as a car owner. This coverage is for the injury and death of one person in one accident. The minimum requirements also include $50,000 for the injury or death of more than one person in one accident and $25,000 for property damages in one accident for others involved in your accident.
What Are Your Insurance Requirements for Your Car?
For drivers (you) without a lien, they are permitted to choose the amount of insurance coverage they require. This means that full insurance coverage isn’t mandatory, and only the minimum coverage requirements will need to be met by a vehicle owner as per the requirements of Ohio law.
What Are the Insurance Requirements for a Leased Vehicle?
Similar to other states, if a driver (you) is leasing a vehicle, you don’t own it outright. As long as you make payments on it, you don’t own it. This means that legally, you’re required to have your leased vehicle fully covered by auto insurance.
Should you not buy the requisite coverage, it is within the lender’s rights to issue you a warning and then arrange a vehicle insurance policy in your name on your behalf for the car you have leased from them. There could be severe consequences if you still choose not to insure your vehicle from the law and the lender.
What Are the Actual Penalties for Driving Without Car Insurance in Ohio?
Driving without proper car insurance coverage in Ohio is illegal. You could face penalties if the BMV catches you without auto insurance after a car accident.
Some of these penalties could include a mandatory suspension of your driver’s license, reinstatement fees, and, in some instances, imprisonment. Usually, the reinstatement fee is $100, but the courts could impose other expenses as they see fit.
What Are the Actual Penalties for a Second Offense?
Should you be convicted within five years for a second driving uninsured offense (after being in a car accident), you will incur a suspended driver’s license for one year. Yet, you could be granted limited driving privileges depending on the circumstances of your case. These privileges are usually only granted by a court 15 days after your suspension.
Your registration suspension and license plate will continue until you have paid the estimated $360 reinstatement fee associated with your second driving uninsured offense. Unfortunately, if you violate the suspension, you will have your vehicle’s license plates confiscated, and your car will be immobilized for 60 days.
How Ohio Law Applies to You if You’re at Fault for a Car Accident and Have No Insurance
According to Ohio tort law, you’re personally and financially responsible for an accident victim’s lost wages, medical expenses, damages, and pain and suffering if you’re an at-fault driver without insurance coverage.
In these cases, an accident victim or their insurance company is allowed to sue you to recover damages. Unfortunately, if you’re an uninsured at-fault driver who caused an accident, you will likely find it challenging to find a lawyer to represent you. Yet it’s best to speak with one to understand your legal obligations and options.
How Ohio Law Applies to You if You’re an Uninsured Driver Who Is Not at Fault for a Car Accident
As we mentioned earlier, if you’re an uninsured driver involved in an auto accident and were not at fault, you could be entitled to compensation from the negligent party. Essentially, this means that depending on your case circumstances, you could be eligible to file a personal injury claim against the driver who was found to be at fault.
However, you need to know that this does not acquit you from your wrongdoings. You will still have to face the legal consequences of violating Ohio law by choosing to drive while uninsured.
Speak With an Ohio Car Accident Lawyer Today to Discuss Your Case
Have you recently been involved in an Ohio car accident and are an uninsured driver? If so, it’s within your best interests to seek legal advice from the car accident attorney at The Henry Law Firm. Car accident cases involving an uninsured driver are often complex and challenging to navigate.
Our firm has experience with these cases, which is why we can evaluate yours and help you determine the best course of action. Additionally, if you were injured because of an at-fault driver and were uninsured, we can help you build a case. Get in touch with our talented legal team by contacting us today.