Penalties for driving without insurance in New York

Auto insurance can seem complicated to obtain and maintain at times. However, it is necessary for good reasons. In the event of an accident, insurance can provide financial relief and help reduce the risk of lawsuits. Even a minor accident can cause financial hardship if you have no insurance. You simply need to file a claim and pay your deductible. The insurance company will take care of everything else. Being caught driving without insurance can result in severe penalties. These penalties could be much more expensive than paying out-of-pocket for car repairs. Driving without insurance in New York is generally not worth it.

New York City minimum insurance requirements

New York has no exception. Each state has its requirements for auto insurance. The minimum required liability coverage for a state is:

  • $10,000 property damage in one accident
  • $25,000 for bodily injuries and $50,000 for death in the case of an accident victim
  • $50,000 for bodily injuries and $100,000 for deaths for two or more victims of an accident

Uninsured motorist coverage is required by state law. It is mandatory to provide minimum coverage of $50,000 for “no fault” or personal injuries protection (PIP). Although obtaining only the minimum coverage will not prevent you from being cited or subject to other penalties, it’s a good idea for financial protection to consider purchasing additional coverage.

Driving without insurance in New York carries severe penalties

Driving without insurance in New York is illegal. Imagine an insurance company notifying the New York DMV of a policy lapse. The insured must either reinstate their policy or turn in their registration and plate to keep them off the roads. Many people rely on their cars and may feel tempted to drive without insurance. These consequences could be imposed on those who drive in New York without insurance.

Tickets and fines

New York drivers without insurance can expect to pay fines of between $150-$1,500. Each subsequent offense will result in increased penalties.

Vehicle impounded

Driving an uninsured car in New York is illegal. A police officer can take your vehicle away if they catch you driving without insurance. Before they release your vehicle, you will need to show proof of insurance as well as pay storage and impound charges.

Jail time

Uninsured drivers may be sentenced to jail in certain circumstances, especially if this is not their first offense. The judge will decide how long you are allowed to serve. It may also depend on whether you were involved in an accident while uninsured.

Suspended License

The state can suspend your driver’s license after ninety days from the date the DMV informs you of a lapsed in insurance. If you are found driving without insurance, your license can be suspended. Renewing your license usually costs $50. However, it could cost up to $750 if there are injuries or you don’t have any insurance.

Fees for New York’s online verification system for insurance

New York’s online insurance system makes it simple to verify your insurance. To determine if a vehicle has insurance, owners, lienholders or insurance companies can fill out an Insurance Question Letter. The online insurance verification system is free. However, you may be subject to additional fines or fees if your vehicle is not insured. If you are cited for driving with no insurance, there will likely be additional financial penalties. This includes civil fines.

In an accident and not having insurance

New Yorkers who are caught driving without insurance at the time of an incident will likely face severe consequences. The driver’s license can and will be suspended for up to one year. The license can be reinstated with a $750 civil penalty after the suspension has been lifted.

New York is a state that is no-fault. This is why PIP protection is $50,000. This means that no matter who was at fault for the accident, if the other driver has the minimum required insurance, their insurance will pay their medical bills up until that amount. It does not cover property damage. You will be responsible for paying the cost of repairs to your car if you are at fault. This can prove very costly. If the injuries sustained by the victim are serious, you may still be able to sue them for any medical costs.

Even if you weren’t at fault for an accident, you would be responsible for vehicle repairs and any medical expenses if insurance isn’t available. It’s a good idea to have adequate insurance that covers you in case of an accident.

Questions frequently asked

What happens if you give false information about your insurance?

It’s unlikely that you will be caught driving in New York without insurance. There is an online system for verifying your insurance status that officers have access to. The penalties for providing false information will vary depending on how serious the offense was and whether the victim received financial benefits. It is likely that you will be charged with insurance fraud. This serious crime can result in severe civil penalties and possible jail time.

What is the cost of car insurance in New York City?

New York’s car insurance rates are some of the most expensive in the country. New York’s minimum coverage rate is $1,062 while full coverage costs $2,321; this compares to the national average, which is $1,674 for full coverage or $565 for minimal coverage.

Are I required to have the minimum state coverage in New York?

As a baseline, the state minimum coverage requirement applies. Every New Yorker must have at least the minimum coverage, but they are allowed to have more. You might consider higher limits or full coverage. This is because more coverage means lower out-of-pocket expenses in the event of a claim.