Auto Insurance Laws in Texas – Don’t Get Caught Without It!
What Kind of Auto Insurance Do I Need
According to the Texas Department of Insurance, the state of Texas requires motorists to have what’s called 30/60/25 coverage at a minimum. This means that the cheap car insurance Texas policy you purchase must cover at least $30,000 in doctor’s bills for injured motorists, $60,000 for each accident, and $25,000 for property damage. However, with automobile prices and doctor bills increasing, it may not be enough to just have the minimum coverage. Therefore, it is advised that you purchase auto insurance that covers more than the minimum amount. This is often why many accident cases end up in court. The driver at fault did not purchase enough auto insurance coverage, and the victim exercises their right to litigate for the difference.
All Motorists Must Show Proof of Insurance When Requested
You will need to show proof of auto insurance coverage when requested by a police officer, when you have an accident, have your vehicle inspected or renew license plates, and renew your driver’s license. The penalties for driving without auto insurance are very strict in Texas. (This is covered in the next section.)
What Is the Penalty for Driving Without Auto Insurance
The state of Texas has strict laws regarding driving without insurance. These penalties depend on several factors, such as the following:
- Amount of damage caused – Most of the time, you will get off with a lighter penalty if you didn’t cause much damage, and all your legal documents (driver’s license, proof of auto insurance coverage, vehicle registration, etc.) are kept current.
- Whether the accident was intentional – If you purposely caused damage to the other motorist’s car (for example, as a result of road rage), the law will not look kindly upon it and may tack on additional charges, jail time and/or heavier fines, particuiarly if you caused serious injury or death.
- Whether there were any serious injuries or deaths – You’re more likely to get a stronger sentence if there were serious injuries or deaths.
- Whether you have a driver’s license at the time of the accident – Be prepared to show the police officer your driver’s license, vehicle registration, and proof of auto insurance – he will ask for it, and it will weigh against you if your case goes to trial and you don’t have your driver’s license on hand.
If you get caught driving without auto insurance, the penalties are as follows:
- 1st offense: $175 to $350 fine
- Each subsequent offense: $350 to $1,000 fine, suspended license, vehicle impounded
- No driver’s license: Maximum $2,000 fine, 180 days jail time, or both
- Serious injuries or death: Maximum $4,000 fine, one year jail time, or both
In this article, we have taken a look at why auto insurance is required in the state of Texas, how car insurance can protect motorists, the minimum amount of coverage you need and the penalties for driving without auto insurance. The penalties for driving without insurance in Texas can get quite expensive. Don’t get caught without it – it just isn’t worth the trouble you will get into, and when you have an accident, you’ll be glad you have the insurance to back you up.