Driving uninsured: the cost

No matter the severity, car accidents can be frightening, to say the least. After all is said and done, Montana drivers are often left in a confused state in regard to the steps that ensue. What will happen to monthly insurance premiums? Will those premiums increase, even when a driver was not at fault? What if there was no insurance to begin with?

As educational resource HowStuffWorks explains, most states require all drivers to have automobile liability insurance; however, this does not stop countless Americans from hitting the roads uninsured. In fact, HowStuffWorks uses a study to show that one out of every drivers is uninsured. Some might argue on the reason for this statistic, but many point toward a tight economy that leaves some drivers with limited financial options. Penalties for driving uninsured may vary from state to state.

When worse comes to worst, and a person discovers that the driver at fault drove uninsured, they may look to state-specific laws for further information. The Montana Department of Justice outlines the state’s insurance laws for drivers, which require that all motor vehicles that operate on public roads are covered by a liability insurance policy. The fines that come with driving uninsured are no light matter, as the MDJ shares that a first offense could result in a misdemeanor, up to $500 in fees and even jail time. A second offense can result in a $350 minimum fine and 10 days minimum behind bars; third-time offenders can face a $500 fine or six months’ jail time. While it is clear that an overwhelming number of drivers struggle financially, uninsured drivers cost law-abiding drivers and insurance companies millions each year, making the cost of uninsured driving as a whole a crippling one.