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Driving Without Valid / Sufficient Insurance

In every state, drivers are required to demonstrate the ability to pay up to a certain amount to cover their liability if they are involved in a motor vehicle accident. These laws are sometimes called "financial responsibility" laws; while not all states specifically require that drivers carry liability insurance from an insurance company, they all require some form of proof of financial responsibility.

In states that do not specifically require motor vehicle drivers to show proof of liability insurance in order to comply with "financial responsibility" laws, other acceptable forms of proving responsibility include:

  • Self-insurance certification
  • Certificates of deposit
  • Surety bonds

Laws in most states differentiate between driving a vehicle that is not insured (or without adequate financial responsibility), and driving a vehicle without proof that the vehicle is insured (i.e. when a driver of a properly insured vehicle fails to carry proof of a valid insurance policy).

Sufficient Insurance: State Laws

Below, you will find a list of all 50 states, along with links to each financial responsibility law. Following the chart is a list of penalties that may be imposed if you fail to abide by the laws in your state.

State Statute
Alabama Liability insurance required
(AL Code section 32-7A-4)
Alaska Motor vehicle liability insurance required; exemptions
(AK Statutes section 28.22.011)
Arizona Vehicle Insurance and Financial Responsibility
(ARS Title 28; scroll to Chapter 9)
Arkansas Proof to be furnished for each vehicle
(AR Code section 27-19-711)
California Financial Responsibility Laws
(California Vehicle Code, Division 7)
Colorado Motor Vehicle Financial Responsibility Law
(CRS Title 42, Article 7)
Connecticut Proof of financial responsibility
(GSC section 14-112)
Delaware Motor vehicle liability policy
(DE Code Title 21, section 2902)
District of Columbia Financial responsibility; proof required for each registered vehicle
(DC Code section 50-1301.52)
Florida Financial Responsibility
(FS Chapter 324)
Georgia Motor Vehicle Safety Responsibility Act
(Georgia Code Title 40, Ch. 9)
Hawaii Motor Vehicle Safety Responsibility Act
(HRS Chapter 287)
Idaho Required motor vehicle insurance
(ID Statutes section 49-1229)
Illinois Mandatory Insurance
(625 ILCS 5/7-601 to 5/7-610)
Indiana Financial Responsibility
(Indiana Code Title 9, Article 25)
Iowa Proof of security against liability
(IA Code section 321.20B)
Kansas Liability insurance requirements
(KS Statutes section 66-1314)
Kentucky Financial Responsibility Law
(KRS Chapter 187)
Louisiana Security required
(LRS section 32:861)
Maine Financial responsibility and insurance
(MRS Title 29-A, Ch. 13)
Maryland Required Security
(MD Transportation Code Title 17)
Massachusetts Operating motor vehicle without liability policy, bond or security deposit
(90 MGL section 34J)
Michigan Producing evidence of motor vehicle insurance
(MI Vehicle Code section 257.328)
Minnesota Criminal penalty for failure to produce proof of insurance
(MN Statutes section 169.791)
Mississippi Motor vehicle safety--Responsibility
(MS Code Title 63, Ch. 15)
Missouri Motor Vehicle Financial Responsibility Law
(MRS Chapter 303)
Montana Motor Vehicle Insurance Responsibility and Verification
(MCA Title 61, Ch. 6, Part 1)
Nebraska Proof of financial responsibility required
(R.R.S. Nebr. section 60-387)
Nevada Insurance required
(NRS section 485.185)
New Hampshire Amount of proof of financial responsibility
(NH Statutes section 264:20)
Methods of giving proof of financial responsibility
(NH Statutes section 264:21)
New Jersey Maintenance of motor vehicle liability insurance coverage
(NJ Statutes section 39:6B-1)
New Mexico Vehicle must be insured or owner must have evidence of financial responsibility; penalties
(NMS section 66-5-205)
New York Financial security; registration
(NY Vehicle & Traffic Code section 312)
North Carolina Motor Vehicle Safety and Financial Responsibility Act
(NCGS Ch. 20, Article 9A)
North Dakota Proof of Financial Responsibility for the Future
[PDF] (ND Code Chapter 39-16.1)
Driving without liability insurance prohibited
[PDF] (ND Code Chapter 39-08; scroll to section 39-08-20)
Ohio Financial Responsibility
(ORC Chapter 4509)
Oklahoma Proof of financial responsibility
(OK Statutes section 47-7-201)
Oregon Financial Responsibility Law
(OR Vehicle Code Chapter 806)
Pennsylvania Financial Responsibility: Proof of Financial Responsibility
(PA Vehicle Code Chapter 17; scroll to Subchapter H)
Rhode Island Proof of Financial Responsibility for the Future
(RI Code Chapter 31-32)
South Carolina Motor Vehicle Financial Responsibility Act
(SC Code Title 56, Ch. 9)
South Dakota Maintenance of financial responsibility--Violation as misdemeanor
(SD Codified Laws section 32-35-113)
Tennessee Financial Responsibility
(TN Code Title 55, Ch. 12)
Texas Motor Vehicle Safety Responsibility Act
(TX Transportation Code Chapter 601)
Utah Operating motor vehicle without owner's or operator's security -- Penalty
(UT Code section 41-12a-302)
Vermont Maintenance of financial responsibility
(23 VSA section 800)
Virginia Proof of insurance required
(VA Code section 46.2-706)
Washington Liability insurance or other financial responsibility required
(RCW section 46.30.020)
West Virginia Required security; exceptions
(WV Code section 17D-2A-3)
Wisconsin Vehicles--Financial Responsibility
(WI Code Chapter 344)
Wyoming Proof of financial responsibility
(WY Statutes Title 31, Ch. 9, Article 4)

Possible Penalties

Across all states and D.C., penalties for a first-time offense for driving without insurance range from the imposition of a $100 fine to a one-year driver's license suspension. While penalties for driving without insurance vary from state to state, these are some of the other most common penalties:

  • Having your driver's license suspended.
  • Having your vehicle registration suspended.
  • Receiving a traffic ticket for a no-insurance violation.
  • Requiring you to file an official document (called an SR-22 form) confirming that you have at least the minimum insurance coverage required by your state. Some states might impose this only if you cause an accident while driving without insurance; others may impose it simply for driving uninsured.

Legal Advice on Financial Responsibility Laws

Penalties for driving without enough car insurance can be steep. Each state has its own set of penalties, so check with your state's DMV for details and speak with a local traffic ticket lawyer to learn more.

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