Do you know the risks involved if you are caught driving without car insurance in Louisiana? The penalties might surprise you. Not providing proof of insurance promptly could lead to the loss of your vehicle and even more fines.
Take a look at what you could be facing.
Louisiana No Proof of Insurance Penalties
Failure to abide by minimum car insurance laws in Louisiana could lead to fines, limited recovery of damages, or impoundment of your car.
If you don't have insurance, you'll be fined between $500 and $1,000 for the first offense.
Even neglecting to carry proof of insurance—meaning you forget your insurance card at home when you’re out driving on the road—can quickly cause you to have your car impounded and the license plates removed.
After you are pulled over and fail to provide proof of car insurance, you have three days to provide proof of insurance to the motor vehicle office. If you fail to do so and/or are stopped again, the license plates will be destroyed and you will have to pay hefty fees to re-register your car.
Car Accident With No Car Insurance
If you’re in an accident and you don’t have car insurance, you’re going to be in severe financial trouble—whether or not you were at fault in the crash.
If you fail to carry insurance and are in a collision with another person who does have proper coverage, Louisiana's "No Pay, No Play" law stops you from collecting the first $25,000 in property damage and $15,000 of personal injuries, even if the other person caused the accident.
Despite the danger of driving without insurance in Louisiana, it's not hard to see why some drivers choose to take the risk. Louisiana ranks number one with the highest car insurance rates in the country. In 2021, Louisiana residents can expect to pay an average of $2,839 annually for full coverage. This is over $1,400 more than the national average of $1,428.
Car insurance prices are so high in Louisiana due to the frequency of lawsuits, many uninsured or underinsured drivers, high volumes of traffic and accidents, and severe weather, among other reasons.
For many people, it can be hard to make ends meet when mandatory expenses are so high.
Unfortunately, even though monthly premiums can be difficult to afford, it is even more expensive if you're ever caught driving without the proper coverage—particularly if you get into a car accident.
Lowering Car Insurance Costs
To make auto insurance more affordable, shop around for the best rate. Ask friends and family to recommend an insurance agent to you. In addition to the fact that your friend will often end up getting a referral bonus, there are often enticing offers for those looking to sign on to a new insurance company.
Insurance companies are in the business of recruiting customers and trying to keep them happy.
In some cases, you might be able to get a discount if you choose the same carrier that provides your home, rental, life, or health insurance policies. This is sometimes known as a "bundling" or "multi-policy" discount.
It also helps if you keep your driving record as clean as possible. When you are accident- and ticket-free, your car insurance premiums will be much more affordable.