Florida is one of several states that will pay for car repairs and medical bills after an accident no matter who is at fault. You must have the minimum amount of coverage required in the state before you slip behind the wheel of your car and head off down the road. Though you might feel tempted to take a short drive without insurance because you assume nothing will happen, an accident can happen in the blink of an eye. Even if you avoid accidents, the police can still ask for proof of insurance during a routine traffic stop. Not having insurance can leave you with some huge penalties.
Proof of Insurance
Florida requires that you have and carry proof of insurance with you at all times. As many insurers now let you keep digital copies of your card on your smartphone, it’s easy to show proof when asked. You will need to purchase new insurance before your old policy expires and show proof of your insurance when you get new tags or renew your old tags. If you do not have insurance, the state can suspend your driver’s license and prevent you from getting new tags/plates or registering a vehicle in Florida for up to three years.
Once the state catches you driving without insurance, it will remain on your record for three years. The second time that you do not have insurance, the state will assign you a $250 fine. You will need to pay this fine within a set period of time or request a payment plan. Not paying the fine can result in the state suspending your license. If the state catches you driving without insurance a third time within this three years, you’ll face a $500 fee.
Insurance Company Notifications
Whether you purchase a policy from a Florida automobile insurance company or a company based in another state, the company must follow Florida laws. Florida requires that insurers contact the state when a driver registered in Florida goes without insurance. As soon as you current policy lapses, the insurer will contact the state, which will then contact you and ask for proof of insurance. You face the suspension of your license and large fines, even if you do not use your vehicle. Keeping track of the expiration date of your policy and renewing your insurance is the best way to avoid these penalties.