The Hard Facts About Uninsured Drivers in California
Despite the fact that mandatory liability insurance laws were passed many years ago and the penalties for not having insurance are steep and well publicized, there are still many drivers on California streets and highways who do not have insurance. This disregard for the law puts law-abiding drivers at risk and makes their liability insurance more expensive than it has to be. The hard facts about uninsured drivers in California may shock and upset the state’s drivers but the more we know about uninsured drivers, the more drivers and lawmakers can do about them.
There are approximately 22.4 million cars, motorcycles and light trucks registered in California. Of the amount of California drivers on the road at any time, one driver in four or 25 percent do not have mandatory liability insurance. That percentage rises sharply higher in the evening and early morning hours. In addition to the higher car insurance premiums that they must already pay, it has been estimated that uninsured motorists cost California drivers $1.4 billion every year in auto accidents. If the state finds that a vehicle is uninsured through their shared database with insurance companies, the owner has 30 days to buy insurance.
To put the scope of California’s uninsured drivers in perspective, the state sent out 1.8 million notices of registration suspension from September to December 2007. Of that number, state official say that 500,000 drivers showed up to provide proof of insurance purchase to reinstate their registration. An astonishing 72 percent of those who receive suspension notices did not respond to the California DMV.
If you have been involved in an accident caused by an uninsured driver, South Central Los Angeles auto accident lawyer Samer Habbas may be able to help you recover the damages for medical expenses and other accident-related costs to which you are entitled to under the law.