What Happens if You Crash a Car Without Auto Insurance?
Maryland is part of the vast majority of states in which drivers are legally obligated to carry auto insurance. Driving without insurance is a crime and may lead to severe penalties. How will the State know whether you have insurance or not? Getting into an accident is a guaranteed way to make it known that you’re breaking the law. If you caused the accident, you open yourself up to a lawsuit from the injured party, which can also lead to significant financial hardships.
If you caused an accident while driving without insurance in Maryland, you deserve quality representation by a criminal traffic lawyer. Many people who drive without insurance struggle to make ends meet, so paying for the victim’s damages on top of that, and possibly facing other criminal penalties, can be an overwhelming loss.
By working with an attorney, it may be possible to protect your license and reputation. Your lawyer can investigate the facts of your accident to determine who was at fault, and guide you through the legal processes you have suddenly found yourself involved in.
What Makes an At-Fault Insurance State?
Maryland is an at-fault insurance state, meaning that the insurance company of whoever is liable for the accident pays for damages. Victims in these states must prove that the other driver caused the accident which resulted in their injuries. They have a right to sue the at-fault parties when the insurance coverage isn’t sufficient, which can become extremely costly for those who cause car accidents and don’t have insurance coverage.
If you’re at fault for an accident, you might have to pay for the victim’s medical bills, lost wages, and property damage. All these expenses can reach tens of thousands of dollars, which is much more costly than paying a monthly insurance bill. You may also face criminal penalties since driving without insurance is illegal in Maryland.
Penalties for Driving Without Auto Insurance in Maryland
There are three types of insurance coverages required in Maryland, and not having all of them may lead to issues when an accident occurs. Drivers need:
- Personal Injury Protection (PIP)
- Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist
When you register your vehicle, you must show proof of insurance to the MVA. You must also submit a signed Maryland Vehicle Insurance Certification acknowledging that you will keep the minimum required insurance while your vehicle is registered.
The penalties for not keeping the minimum required insurance may include:
- Suspension of your license plates and registration
- Suspension of your driver’s license
- Prohibition of registering a new vehicle until insurance violations are cleared
- A fee of $150 for the first 30 days without insurance, plus a daily fee of $7 afterward for a possible fine of no more than $2,500
- A criminal fine of up to $1,000 for a first offense
- A jail sentence of up to 1 year for a first offense
- 5 points on your driver’s license
Ultimately, the consequences you might face for driving without insurance vary depending on the facts of your case. Talk to attorney Hillel Traub of The Law Office of Hillel Traub to understand what you’re up against if you’ve been criminally charged.
Trust Hillel to Protect Your Legal Rights after a Driving Without Insurance Charge
Attorney Hillel Traub of The Law Office of Hillel Traub has extensive experience defending all types of traffic charges, including criminal violations like driving without insurance, throughout Maryland. As a former Assistant Attorney General for the Maryland MVA, he has insider knowledge of the MVA’s inner workings that can greatly benefit your case. Contact our law firm for a free consultation by calling (410) 580-1100 or complete our contact form.