Florida state law requires that all drivers carry insurance on their vehicles. The state requires not just liability coverage in case you cause a crash that hurts someone else or damages property. There is also an obligation to carry no-fault personal injury protection coverage to pay for any medical costs incurred by the driver or any of their passengers.
Simply making a requirement to carry insurance does not guarantee that every driver will always maintain a policy. Sometimes, forgetfulness or financial hardship lead to someone having a lapse in their coverage p. What happens if a driver gets caught out on the roads without insurance?
Florida imposes financial penalties and suspension for uninsured drivers
The state will take action against you just for letting your insurance lapse. Insurance providers should notify the state when someone’s policy lapses. This allows the state to take action right away. However not every insurance company always immediately follows this rule, so some drivers only face consequences for their lapsed coverage if they get pulled over by a police officer or cause a wreck.
You could face the suspension of your license, vehicle registration and license plates for three years unless you provide proof of new insurance and pay a $150 fee to reinstate your license, plates and registration. The fee goes up to $250 for a second lapse within three years and $500 for a third lapse.
If the police catch you driving without insurance or if you cause a crash, the officer will likely issue you a citation for not having insurance. That ticket will trigger the penalties for lapsed insurance mentioned above, in addition to any consequences you face for causing a wreck.
Understanding the consequences could help you make better choices
When drivers in Florida understand what happens if their insurance policy lapses, they may realize how important it is to keep their policy active. Sometimes, issues with insurance may occur through no fault of the driver involved, such as when a company fails to apply a payment to an account.
Administrative errors are among the possible defenses that could help you fight back against the consequences for a lapse in insurance. Learning more about how Florida penalizes traffic offenses can help you make better choices about driving.