Penalties for Driving Without Insurance in Georgia
Learn more about the implications for driving without insurance in Georgia, including fines and state driving laws.
In Georgia, state law requires all drivers to have proof of insurance. Driving without insurance is considered a misdemeanor, and you could face fines up to $1,000 and up to 12 months in jail. Your license may also be suspended for 60 to 90 days. That's why it’s important to know the state's minimum insurance requirements and the consequences of driving without insurance in Georgia. Here’s what you need to know about driving without insurance in Georgia:
- Fines for driving without insurance in Georgia
- Georgia state driving laws
- What to do if you’re pulled over without insurance
How much is a ticket for no insurance in Georgia?
You may have to pay up to $185 in fees if you're caught driving without insurance. You may also have to pay up to $1,000 if you're convicted of a misdemeanor for no proof of insurance.
In Georgia, any law enforcement officer can ask for your ID and proof of auto insurance. If you're unable to provide proof of insurance, you may face steep fees and even more serious consequences. These are the fines and consequences for driving without proof of insurance in Georgia:
- First offense: Lapse fee of $25 and a reinstatement fee of $60. Depending on the circumstances, you may serve jail time of up to 12 months. Your license and registration will be suspended for 60 days and until you have a six-month insurance policy that meets the state’s minimum liability requirements.
- Second offense: Lapse fee of $25 and a reinstatement fee of $60. If the second offense is within five years of the first, your license and registration are suspended for six months. You must show proof of a six-month insurance policy to get driving privileges back. Again, you may face up to 12 months in jail depending on the circumstances.
- Third and subsequent offenses: Lapse fee of $25 and a reinstatement fee of $160. You must also show proof of a six-month insurance policy that fulfills the state's requirements to have your license reinstated. You may have to serve up to a year in jail.
Can you go to jail for driving without insurance in Georgia?
Yes, you can go to jail for driving without insurance. The circumstances of your conviction can cause you to spend up to one year in jail, for example, if you are caught several times for driving without insurance in the state and are considered a repeat offender. Although it's not common, there's a risk of jail time if you choose to drive without insurance.
Georgia driving laws
Georgia state law requires all drivers to carry proof of insurance, whether they own the car or not. If you aren’t carrying proof of insurance, you risk having your license suspended if you're pulled over.
It's important to check your state's minimum auto insurance requirements so you know how much coverage you need to be legal on the road. These are Georgia's minimum state liability requirements:
- $25,000 bodily injury liability per person
- $50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
- $25,000 property damage liability per accident
Insurance lapses in Georgia
One way you may find yourself driving without insurance in Georgia is if you allow your coverage to lapse. Your insurance company will notify the state of Georgia if your insurance lapses or is terminated. Once the Georgia Department of Driver Services (DDS) is notified, you have 30 days to provide proof of insurance. If you can't provide proof, the state can suspend your license. After your license is suspended, choosing to continue to drive could result in an additional six-month license suspension.
Driving with lapsed insurance is the same as driving with no insurance, so the risk of expensive fines and possible jail time also applies. Not only that, but insurance companies take lapses into account when pricing your policy. You may face higher rates if your coverage lapses. If you're having trouble finding affordable coverage after a lapse in coverage, compare quotes from several insurance companies.
What to do after being caught driving without insurance
If you're caught driving without proof of insurance, you are subject to the consequences described above, depending on how many times you've been cited for driving without insurance. You should pay the required fines as quickly as possible to avoid any added fees. If you had coverage at the time of your citation but weren't carrying proof, you can still be fined. In this case, provide documents at your court date, where you'll face a maximum $25 fine. If you're able to show that you were insured at the time of the ticket, you shouldn’t receive a misdemeanor citation on your legal record.
Also, make sure to stay off the road if your license is suspended to avoid future citations. When you're finally able to get back on the road, always carry proof of insurance and avoid any lapses in coverage.
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