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Driving Without Insurance in Maryland
In times of economic distress, driving offenses related to financial hardship proliferate, often placing further strain on economically distressed motorists. Insurance industry data indicates that in 2010, one in six drivers in the U.S. allowed their motor vehicle insurance to lapse for at least part of the year. Loss of driving privileges that can result from driving without insurance in Maryland can impede many aspects of an individual’s life, most notably interfering with the ability to drive to and from work- further exacerbating situations of financial hardship. More information about other traffic violations here.
Penalties for Driving in Maryland without Insurance
In the state of Maryland, experiencing a lapse in one’s car insurance can be a very expensive offensive even if one is not caught or pulled over without insurance. To deter drivers from taking this offense lightly, the state of Maryland has a system of automatic fines accompanying car insurance lapses. This means that even in the unfortunate situation where you are unaware of the lapse in your insurance, you will still be liable for fines— $150 for the first 30 days without insurance, and $7 for each day beyond that. These fines can go up to $2,500 per 12-month period. § 17-106(e)(1).
In addition to the very expensive fines for lacking insurance, one can also face the penalty of up to one year in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000 for providing false evidence of insurance in Maryland (see MVA here). Furthermore, driving without insurance can result in five points on your driver’s license, which will almost certainly result in higher insurance premiums and rates for the driver.
According to the Maryland Vehicle Administration, these are some of the other penalties which can result from driving without insurance:
- Loss of vehicle registration privileges
- Loss of license plates
- Restoration fee of up to $25 to restore registration
- Being prohibited from registering any vehicles in the future until insurance violations are settled
- Be prohibited from renewing suspended registration until insurance violations are settled
- Registration suspension, after which an authorized tag recovery agent can confiscate your license plates
Minimizing the impact of a charge of driving without insurance in Maryland
However, a charge of driving without insurance in Maryland does not have to be a catastrophic experience. An experienced Maryland traffic lawyer is familiar with the havoc even seemingly minor traffic charges can inflict personally, professionally, and financially. An attorney experienced in Maryland traffic violations can assist you in navigating the legal system, working to protect your driving privileges and minimize the impact of such charges on your life. If you have been charged with driving without insurance in Maryland, contact the law office of Edward Tayter for a free consultation. Mr. Tayter represents clients across the state of Maryland, so if you are in need of a Prince George’s County DUI lawyer or a Columbia DUI lawyer, please contact us to find more information on the services we can provide.
A special thanks to Attorney Jonathan Rosenfeld for his insights in the development of this page.