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Driving Without Insurance In Chicago: Just Exactly How Bad Is It?

Casey Woodruff

Driving a motor vehicle poses many dangers. One way to address these dangers is to carry car insurance. Unfortunately, some drivers fail to obtain car insurance because they believe it is too expensive – possibly attributed to increased rates due to prior accidents or traffic tickets. However, the failure to carry car insurance may not only have adverse consequences for the car owner themselves, but also other drivers who are involved in car accidents with the uninsured car owner – often leading to uninsured motorist claims by the unsuspecting drivers.

Car Insurance in Illinois

Illinois requires motorists to carry minimum liability insurance. Drivers caught driving without this insurance will have their licenses suspended for three months. To get a suspended license back, a driver will have to pay a fine to reinstate the license, which can range from $500 to $1,000. Drivers caught driving without insurance while their license is suspended face an additional penalty and six-month suspension.

Car insurance protects drivers from having to cover the cost of an accident. Drivers who have been involved in an accident know how costly it can be. Without insurance, a driver may be liable for damage to the car as well as damage to other vehicles. If there are injuries, a driver’s liability can be even greater. If any other drivers or passengers are injured, the driver who is at fault may be liable for those costs.

Insurance can cover a driver’s personal liability for the financial impact of an accident. If a driver causes an accident and is uninsured, the other driver can sue to get a judgment for injury or damage resulting from the accident. Such a judgment can impact many aspects of a driver’s life; it may attach to any property the driver owns, wages may be garnished or the driver’s license may be lost permanently.

Fortunately, Illinois insurance law also requires uninsured motorist limits of $20,000 per person and $40,000 per car accident – meaning drivers who get in an accident with a person failing to carry insurance can still file a UM claim with their own insurance company.

An attorney can help protect the rights of individuals injured in an accident with an uninsured driver.

Source: CarInsurance.com, “Illinois Car Insurance

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