How To Sue a Driver With No Insurance

You can sue a driver with no insurance, but if you have uninsured motorist coverage, you might not have to. 13% of drivers are uninsured nationwide, and in most states it's illegal to drive without insurance.

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Mathew B. Sims is Editor-in-Chief and has authored, edited, and contributed to several books. He has been working in the insurance industry ensuring content is accurate for consumers who are searching for the best policies and rates...

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Dan Walker graduated with a BS in Administrative Management in 2005 and has been working in his family’s insurance agency, FCI Agency, for 15 years (BBB A+). He is licensed as an agent to write property and casualty insurance...

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Reviewed byDaniel Walker
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UPDATED: Jun 29, 2020

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How to Sue Someone With No Auto Coverage Overview
FactSource
Most states have some sort of law in place that requires drivers to carry at least a small amount of insurance.drivinglaws.aaa.com
If you don't live in a no-fault state and you can identify the uninsured driver, filing a lawsuit could be an option.nolo.com
Your ability to sue in no-fault states is restricted to an incident in which you have suffered serious injuries or incurred major medical bills.nolo.com
If you get into an accident with an uninsured individual, you are most likely going to have to use your own insurance company.nolo.com
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Unfortunately, not all car owners comply with compulsory auto insurance laws. It begs the question: Can you sue someone who doesn’t have auto insurance?

Believe it or not, about one in eight drivers in the United States is uninsured. In states like Oklahoma, the percentage of uninsured motorists is over 25 percent. With so many risks on the road, it’s crucial that you know what steps you should take if you’re ever involved in an uninsured motorist accident. One question you may have is, “How do I report someone with no auto insurance?” or “Should you sue a driver with no insurance, or use your own insurance?” We’ll answer that and more.Here’s a guide to address all your questions.

At the very least, you certainly do not have to sue someone who has no insurance. It’s an unfortunate last resort. Keep reading to learn how to sue someone with no auto coverage and make sure to use our FREE insurance tool above.

Why does it affect you when someone else doesn’t have insurance?

You have to fully grasp how auto insurance claims are paid before you’ll see your neighbor’s driving without insurance around town and other community members as a threat.

It might not affect you when someone chooses not to have auto insurance and damage protection on their vehicle. It does end up affecting you when that same driver doesn’t carry state minimum liability insurance. How many drivers don’t have auto insurance?” The Insurance Information Institute’s statistics estimate that 13 percent of motorists in America are uninsured.

Liability insurance is what helps a policyholder pay for damages after an at-fault accident.

So some car owners might want to skimp on insurance premiums by rejecting extra coverage. However, if the driver skimps and doesn’t maintain their liability auto insurance, they’re putting you and other drivers and pedestrians at risk. They’re also breaking the law and contributing to rising insurance premiums throughout the state.

This next table shows the percentage of uninsured drivers by state.

Percent of Uninsured Drivers by State
StateUninsuredRank
Florida26.7%1
Mississippi23.7%2
New Mexico20.8%3
Michigan20.3%4
Tennessee20%5
Alabama18.4%6
Washington17.4%7
Indiana16.7%8
Arkansas16.6%9
Washington D.C.15.6%10
Alaska15.4%11
California15.2%12
Rhode Island15.2%13
New Jersey14.9%14
Wisconsin14.3%15
Texas14.1%16
Missouri14%17
Illinois13.7%18
Colorado13.3%19
Louisiana13%20
Oregon12.7%21
Ohio12.4%22
Maryland12.4%23
Arizona12%24
Georgia12%25
Kentucky11.5%26
Minnesota11.5%27
Delaware11.4%28
Nevada10.6%29
Hawaii10.6%30
Oklahoma10.5%31
West Virginia10.1%32
Montana9.9%33
Virginia9.9%34
New Hampshire9.9%35
Connecticut9.4%36
South Carolina9.4%37
Iowa8.7%38
Utah8.2%39
Idaho8.2%40
Wyoming7.8%41
South Dakota7.7%42
Pennsylvania7.6%43
Kansas7.2%44
North Dakota6.8%45
Nebraska6.8%46
Vermont6.8%47
North Carolina6.5%48
Massachusetts6.2%49
New York6.1%50
Maine4.5%51
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As you can see, the percentages can vary quite a bit from over a quarter of the population in Florida to less than 5 percent in Maine. Let’s take a look at a law firm ad that should answer the question, “Should I carry uninsured motorist protection?”

Now, let’s move on to what liability insurance covers.

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What does liability insurance pay for?

If you live in one of the 39 fault-based states, you’re required by law to carry liability auto insurance coverage. You may be asking, “What is liability auto insurance coverage?” What follows is a brief table showing minimum requirements for bodily injury and liability insurance in each state.

State Auto Insurance Coverage Requirements & Limits
StateInsurance requiredMinimum liability limits
AlabamaBI & PD Liab25/50/25
AlaskaBI & PD Liab50/100/25
ArizonaBI & PD Liab15/30/10
ArkansasBI & PD Liab, PIP25/50/25
CaliforniaBI & PD Liab15/30/5
ColoradoBI & PD Liab25/50/15
ConnecticutBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/20
DelawareBI & PD Liab, PIP25/50/10
Washington D.C.BI & PD Liab, UM25/50/10
FloridaPD Liab, PIP10/20/10
GeorgiaBI & PD Liab25/50/25
HawaiiBI & PD Liab, PIP20/40/10
IdahoBI & PD Liab25/50/15
IllinoisBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/20
IndianaBI & PD Liab25/50/25
IowaBI & PD Liab20/40/15
KansasBI & PD Liab, PIP25/50/25
KentuckyBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM25/50/25
LouisianaBI & PD Liab15/30/25
MaineBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM, MedPay50/100/25
MarylandBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM30/60/15
MassachusettsBI & PD Liab, PIP20/40/5
MichiganBI & PD Liab, PIP20/40/10
MinnesotaBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM30/60/10
MississippiBI & PD Liab25/50/25
MissouriBI & PD Liab, UM25/50/25
MontanaBI & PD Liab25/50/20
NebraskaBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/25
NevadaBI & PD Liab25/50/20
New HampshireFR only25/50/25
New JerseyBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM15/30/5
New MexicoBI & PD Liab25/50/10
New YorkBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM25/50/10
North CarolinaBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM30/60/25
North DakotaBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM25/50/25
OhioBI & PD Liab25/50/25
OklahomaBI & PD Liab25/50/25
OregonBI & PD Liab, PIP, UM, UIM25/50/20
PennsylvaniaBI & PD Liab, PIP15/30/5
Rhode IslandBI & PD Liab25/50/25
South CarolinaBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/25
South DakotaBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/25
TennesseeBI & PD Liab25/50/15
TexasBI & PD Liab, PIP30/60/25
UtahBI & PD Liab, PIP25/65/15
VermontBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/10
VirginiaBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/20
WashigtonBI & PD Liab25/50/10
West VirginiaBI & PD Liab, UM, UIM25/50/25
WisconsinBI & PD Liab, UM, MedPay25/50/10
WyomingBI & PD Liab25/50/20
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Before we continue, let’s unpack what is shown in each table. BI stands for bodily injury liability and PD stands for property damage. These are the two most frequently required coverages.

UM stands for uninsured motorist coverage, PIP stands for personal injury protection, and FR stands for financial responsibility. For financial responsibility, such as for New Hampshire, insurance is not compulsory. Only a few states, such as Maine, require additional coverage for medical payments, or MedPay.

The third column shows a series of three numbers for each state. The first number refers to bodily injury liability for just you, the second number is for all persons injured in the accident, and the third number is for property damage liability.

If you’re in a collision with another automobile or a cyclist, this coverage would pay for their property and their treatment as long as you’re the negligent party. If you’re in an auto accident without insurance and not at fault, it’s the other driver’s insurance that would, in turn, pay for your damages and medical bills.

Not holding collision coverage opens you up to lawsuits and paying large amounts of money out of pocket. This is what happens if you go about driving without insurance.

Let’s look at the average rates for liability insurance state by state.

Average Annual Liability Auto Insurance Rates
STATEAverage Annual Liability Rates
North Dakota$298.18
Iowa$299.18
South Dakota$300.22
Wyoming$321.04
Maine$338.87
Vermont$343.12
Idaho$344.29
Kansas$358.24
North Carolina$359.42
Nebraska$364.64
Wisconsin$374.37
Indiana$382.68
Montana$386.29
Arkansas$394.13
Alabama$394.21
Ohio$397.11
New Hampshire$400.56
Tennessee$413.91
Missouri$415.88
Virginia$425.61
Illinois$446.72
Minnesota$456.82
Hawaii$458.54
Mississippi$460.50
Oklahoma$461.01
New Mexico$488.03
California$489.66
West Virginia$491.83
Utah$497.53
Pennsylvania$499.06
Arizona$508.76
Colorado$520.04
South Carolina$527.09
Texas$528.75
Kentucky$529.21
Countrywide$538.73
Alaska$539.68
Georgia$557.38
Oregon$584.13
Washington$596.67
Massachusetts$606.04
Maryland$609.74
Washington D.C.$628.82
Connecticut$650.94
Nevada$681.56
Rhode Island$759.80
Louisiana$775.83
Michigan$795.32
Delaware$799.30
New York$804.51
Florida$857.64
New Jersey$869.57
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How does the rate look for your state?

Let’s watch a video from Allstate about liability coverage.

This next video is about uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage.

Let’s move on to whether you should sue an individual with no auto insurance coverage.

Do you have to sue someone who has no auto insurance?

You thought getting into an accident was your worst nightmare until you got into a car accident where the other driver has no insurance. So what happens after an auto accident without insurance covering the other party? What happens if the person at fault in the accident has no insurance?

The chances of it happening in your lifetime are pretty high, especially if you’re in an area with more uninsured motorists than normal. You might assume filing suit is your only option, but in some cases, it’s not.

A fair question would be, “Do I need to hire an attorney?” You need to review your policy and see what your options are before contacting an attorney.

Do you have Uninsured Motorist Protection?

What is uninsured motorist protection? For one, uninsured motorist protection is often optional. There are, however, a few states that have made the coverage mandatory because of the havoc that uninsured drivers are causing on the road.

This should negate the question, “Can I sue if I have uninsured motorist protection?” because the protection itself is what will cover you, saving you the hassle of a nasty lawsuit.

You should always buy at least some UM coverage even when you’re not required to. This is because when a lawsuit becomes your only option, if the other driver does not have any money, you are essentially left out to dry.

Then the answer to the question, “Is it worth suing an uninsured driver?” is situationally dependent. Also situationally dependent is just how long you have to file a lawsuit. For instance, in Virginia, it’s two years for personal injury claims.

Before we continue, let’s look at the statute of limitations on lawsuits for each state.

Auto Insurance Statute of Limitations
StatePersonal InjuryProperty Damage
Alabama2 years2 years
Alaska2 years6 years
Arizona2 years2 years
Arkansas3 years3 years
California2 years3 years
Colorado3 years3 years
Connecticut2 years3 years
Delaware2 years2 years
Florida4 years4 years
Georgia2 years4 years
Hawaii2 years2 years
Idaho2 years3 years
Illinois2–3 years5 years
Indiana2 years2 years
Iowa2 years5 years
Kansas1 year2 years
Kentucky1 year2 years
Louisiana1 year1 year
Maine6 years6 years
Maryland3 years3 years
Massachusetts3 years3 years
Michigan3 years3 years
Minnesota2 years6 years
Mississippi3 years3 years
Missouri5 years5 years
Montana3 years2 years
Nebraska4 years4 years
Nevada2 years3 years
New Hampshire3 years3 years
New Jersey2 years6 years
New Mexico3 years4 years
New York3 years3 years
North Carolina3 years3 years
North Dakota6 years6 years
Ohio2 years2 years
Oklahoma2 years2 years
Oregon2 years6 years
Pennsylvania2 years2 years
Rhode Island3 years10 years
South Carolina3 years3 years
South Dakota3 years6 years
Tennessee1 year3 years
Texas2 years2 years
Utah4 years3 years
Vermont3 years3 years
Virginia2 years5 years
Washington3 years3 years
Washington D.C.3 years3 years
West Virginia2 years2 years
Wisconsin3 years3 years
Wyoming4 years4 years
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How long do you have to file a personal injury or property damage lawsuit in your state?

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What does Uninsured Motorist Protection pay for?

Uninsured motorist is first-party coverage that will pay for your own financial loss and the loss incurred by anyone who is in your automobile or lives in your home.

The coverage essentially acts like the bodily injury liability coverage that the other driver didn’t have when they hit you. It will pay for your emergency medical bills, continuing treatment, funeral expenses, and loss of income while you’re out of work.

An uninsured motorist doesn’t just pay when the driver is uninsured. It also pays when the other driver was at fault but they had very low limits that didn’t sufficiently pay for all your bills.

Instead of suing for the remaining $10,000 that you need to pay off the hospital, you can file a UM claim against your own coverage and your insurer won’t penalize you.

Do all insurance companies offer uninsured motorist coverage?

Virtually all states have a law in place that requires insurers to offer all standard policyholders the option to buy uninsured motorist coverage. Don’t be surprised if you have to sign a rejection form saying you don’t want the coverage if you want to take the chance. That’s because agents have to let you know it’s available or the company could be fined.

Do insurance companies go after uninsured drivers when they have paid out a claim? They might, so if you’re wondering what to do if an insurance company sues you, you should start by hiring a lawyer.

What will pay for your automobile?

Uninsured motorist protection doesn’t pay to repair your automobile. You need collision insurance to help you pay for all the repairs when there’s no auto coverage on the other end. Collision coverage is specifically used to cover damage that occurs as a result of a collision between your vehicle and another vehicle or object.

Furthermore, if you have uninsured motorist property damage, you won’t have to pay a deductible. UMPD will offer you up to $3,500 for repairs on a car without full coverage.

Here’s a video on collision insurance.

Now, let’s move on to what you can do, in terms of bringing up a suit.

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Can you file a lawsuit if you’ve exhausted other options?

Can you sue someone for hitting you without insurance? It might not be worth the hassle of filing a lawsuit when you have alternative coverage to lean on.

If you’ve exhausted your other options and you’re still struggling to pay the bills because of your injuries, filing a personal injury claim could be an option.

You may be asking, “Can I sue an uninsured driver in a no-fault state?” or “Can I sue an uninsured driver in an at-fault state?” It all depends on how long ago the accident was and what state you live in.

First, let’s look at which states are no-fault.

Average Annual Auto Insurance Rates in No-Fault States
StateAverage Annual RatesPercent Uninsured Drivers
North Dakota$773.306.80%
Kansas$862.937.20%
Utah$872.938.20%
Hawaii$873.2810.60%
Minnesota$875.4911.50%
Kentucky$938.5111.50%
Pennsylvania$970.517.60%
Massechusets$1,129.296.20%
Florida$1,257.1326.70%
New York$1,360.666.10%
Michigan$1,364.0020.30%
New Jersey$1,382.7914.90%
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There are currently 12 no-fault states in the United States. In each of these states, there are limitations placed on whether you can sue after a motor vehicle accident.

Luckily, in these states, you have no-fault coverage that pays for your own expenses. If these run out, you may win the right to sue back. This is usually reserved for incidences in which you have incurred substantial medical bills due to a serious injury.

In fault-based states, you can file a lawsuit, but there’s no guarantee that you’ll be able to collect.

It’s important to work closely with your own insurer after an accident with an uninsured motorist so that you know all the options. The hard truth is that, in the event of a collision with an uninsured motorist’s automobile, you’ll have to work with your own insurer quite a bit.

Your insurer may even help direct you if they feel like filing a lawsuit is the only reasonable option. Be sure that you do business with a reputable insurer that helps you build a real barrier of protection from the start.

Safety is key, so before we leave you today, let’s look at what you should do and what happens if you get hit by someone without insurance.

  1. Check yourself and your loved ones for injuries.
  2. Call 911 and the assistance of emergency personnel.
  3. Make sure that you don’t leave the accident, regardless of whether the other driver does.
  4. Gather thorough documentation, recording as much info as possible about the accident, the other vehicle, and the other driver. Take photos of the damage incurred by the vehicles.
  5. If you have uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage, file a claim with your insurer.
  6. If you don’t have uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage, you may have to rely on other coverage you have purchased.
  7. Potentially in collaboration with your insurer, personally pursue the at-fault driver to recover damages.

After reading this, you may ask, “Do I need a police report to sue an uninsured driver?” In the process of documenting the auto accident with someone without insurance for your own records, it’s prudent to get a police report no matter the insured status of the other driver.

Obtaining a police report is essentially a post-accident standard operating procedure for any cautious motorist. Hopefully, you and your loved ones are safe, you’ve recorded all you need to, and now you can recover damages.

Now that you know how to sue someone with no auto coverage, don’t be one of the uninsured. Use our simple and helpful tool below to find a provider who will serve your needs.

Frequently Asked Questions: How to Sue Someone With No Auto Coverage

Did we answer all your questions? If not, keep reading for more information.

#1 – Is it worth it to sue someone with no money?

They will still owe you the determined sum. Suing an uninsured driver for damages will result in a judgment against that person.

#2 – What happens if the other person doesn’t have insurance?

It becomes up to you to pay for the damage they caused. You’ll call your insurance company and file a claim.

#3 – Can someone sue you for an auto accident if you have insurance?

Yes, for damages that are beyond your auto insurance coverage level.

#4 – Someone hit me with no insurance; what should I do?

Call the police, don’t accept money at the scene of the accident, swap information, gather details, and take pictures.

#5 – I hit someone and I don’t have insurance; what should I do?

Pay for all the damage to your vehicle and most likely theirs out of pocket.

#6 – What happens if you get into an auto accident with no insurance?

What happens if you don’t have insurance and someone hits you? Even if you’re not responsible for the damages, you can still be charged with a violation of the law. Can you sue someone if you don’t have insurance? In some states you can, but other states have laws called “pay to play” that prohibit this.

#7 – What happens if I am in an auto accident without insurance and am at-fault in Texas?

You are legally required to carry minimum coverage. Failing to do so will, at the very least, result in a ticket.

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