Yes, you have a claim against the at-fault party’s insurance carrier if you were wounded in an automobile accident and someone else was at blame. You can take legal action against the insurance company if it fails to pay as it should.
Although Virginia is one of the few states where you can drive without auto insurance, this isn’t always the best option.
You should have liability insurance at the very least to protect yourself in case you cause damage to another car. Driving without insurance is dangerous, especially in Virginia, where the pure contributory negligence rule applies. This legislation provides that you cannot recover damages from the at-fault party if you were even one percent negligent in the collision.
Virginia Automobile Insurance Regulations
To operate a vehicle in Virginia, you are not required to get auto insurance. If you choose to drive without insurance, you must pay the Uninsured Motor Car Fee when you register your vehicle. This cost is $500 and does not cover the driver’s insurance. If you want to drive without insurance, you must pay this charge every year when you renew your registration.
You’d be better off investing that money in insurance. If you claim to have insurance when you don’t, the DMV may charge you a $600 noncompliance fee and a $145 reinstatement cost, as well as requiring you to present proof of coverage.
Insurers are obligated to notify the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) if you cancel your coverage inside the state.
To be considered having auto insurance in Virginia, your policy must fulfill the minimum coverage standards that took effect on January 1, 20222. Among them are:
$30,000 in coverage for a person’s injury or death (for policies effective on or after Jan. 1, 2022 through December. 31, 2024)
$60,000 for two or more individuals injured or killed (for policies effective on or after Jan. 1, 2022 through December. 31, 2024)
Property damage coverage of $20,000 (for policies effective on or after Jan. 1, 2022 through December. 31, 2024)
The following are the new insurance coverage criteria for policies beginning on or after January 1, 2025:
- $50,000 for one person’s injuries or death
- $100,000 if two or more individuals are injured or killed.
- Property damage of $25,000
- Risks of Driving in Virginia Without Auto Insurance
If you choose to drive without insurance in the Commonwealth of Virginia, you expose yourself to substantial risks in addition to the $500 fine.
The biggest danger is that you’ll cause an accident and be held entirely responsible for any damages. This might result in permanent pay garnishments and the complete draining of all savings accounts.
One mishap could result in long-term financial difficulties. And, regardless of whether you caused the accident or not, if you’re found partially at fault, you’ll be responsible for any medical bills and property damage.
It’s best to buy automobile insurance that fulfills the bare minimal standards to protect yourself from financial disaster in the event of a car accident. Because drivers can drive without insurance, it’s a smart idea to add uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage to your policy to protect yourself in the event of an accident with someone who isn’t covered.
Please contact us for a free consultation.
We understand that changes in your financial situation or difficult times can affect your ability to keep your auto insurance. Geoff McDonald & Associates can help you recover financially regardless of why you were uninsured at the time of your injury. Make an appointment for a free consultation with our car accident lawyer to discover more about your legal rights, regardless of whether you had motor insurance at the time of the accident.