Did you know that an average person is likely to get involved in three to four road accidents in their lifetime? Experts even say that three in four drivers have already experienced at least one crash!
It’s no wonder then that car insurance has become an integral player in the lives of motorists. So much so that without them, most people won’t be able to drive at all.
How will buying auto insurance help you as a driver, though? What exactly does it bring to the table that makes it a must-have for motorists?
We’ve rounded up the top answers to all these questions below, so be sure to read on!
Easiest Way to Prove Financial Responsibility
All US states require motorists to prove they can afford to pay the costs of a road accident they cause. The official term for this is “proof of financial responsibility.”
The easiest way to obtain this proof is by applying for car insurance. That’s because you only have to find an authorized insurer, fill out an application form, and pay the fees. You can even complete the entire purchase process online or over the phone.
Other methods to prove financial responsibility, such as surety bonds, are more complex. Some states may also require a security cash deposit in place of an auto insurance policy. These require more documentation and thus, take longer to process.
It’s the Law
Car insurance is mandatory in all but two states: New Hampshire and Virginia. However, you still need to provide proof of financial responsibility in NH. If you fail to meet this requirement, the state can suspend your driving privileges.
In VA, you can forego auto insurance and pay a $500 Uninsured Motor Vehicle (UMV) fee instead. This is on top of the registration fee. It doesn’t cover or insure you in any way; it only lets you drive an uninsured vehicle legally.
Failure to meet this law will lead to the suspension of all driving privileges. The Virginia DMV also imposes hefty penalties, such as a $600 non-compliance fee. Offending drivers also need to pay another $145 to get their licenses reinstated.
Of course, uninsured VA drivers found at-fault for a crash are still liable to pay for the damages they cause.
It Safeguards Other Road Users
Suppose you made a driving error that resulted in you rear-ending the car in front of you. This led to the other vehicle’s backside getting dented and damaged. The other driver also sustained minor injuries that required professional medical treatment.
If you have insurance, it should help pay for the costs to repair the damages you caused to the other vehicle. It should also cover the hospital or medical bills incurred by the other driver.
If you don’t carry insurance, you will pay for all of these using your own money.
It Protects Your Financial Well-Being
Of the estimated six million car accidents in the US each year, 72% result in property damage. These crashes also lead to three million injuries.
So, not having insurance and being at-fault for a crash can deplete your bank account. For instance, the average property crash damage cost per vehicle was $4,500 in 2018. Evident injuries also resulted in costs averaging $27,800 per person.
Having insurance, therefore, can help safeguard you from such financial disasters.
How Will Buying Auto Insurance Help You Outside of Accidents?
The DMV can learn of a driver’s uninsured status if that motorist gets stopped by the police. After all, the 5-0 asks for the license, registration, and insurance after having a driver pull over. If you can’t show your insurance card, you’ll get slapped with a fine.
This means that you don’t have to be at-fault for a crash for the DMV to learn that you don’t have coverage. In fact, you likely won’t be able to register your vehicle without first buying a policy. Without vehicle registration, you can’t legally drive an automobile.
That’s why having car insurance isn’t only beneficial during accidents. In fact, here are some other ways that having coverage can help.
Keep Your Driving Privileges
If you get pulled over, stop, and follow the officer’s instructions. If you know you haven’t done anything wrong, there’s no need to worry. It may turn out that the officer only wants to give you a verbal warning about your speed.
However, keep in mind that officers can use their own discretion when issuing a warning. They may be more inclined to let you off with a verbal reminder if you don’t breach insurance laws.
The exact opposite can happen if you don’t have proof of financial responsibility. Aside from hefty fines, the officer might even impound your vehicle. Your driver’s license and registration are also both likely to get suspended.
Enables High-Risk Motorists to Continue Driving
Typical insurance companies classify teen and elderly drivers as “high-risk” motorists. That’s because statistically, these groups often get into or cause more accidents. For this reason, such drivers often have a hard time qualifying for coverage.
Drivers who have multiple offenses, especially DUIs or DWIs, are also high-risk.
Since it’s harder for these folks to get insured, many end up not being able to drive at all. If you’re one of them, and you want to get back on the road, a high risk insurance provider can help.
Such insurers cater to high-risk drivers, giving them a chance to get behind the wheel again. These policies are more expensive, though, but you won’t need them forever. As soon as your driving record clears up, you can switch back to a standard, lower-cost policy.
Never Underestimate the Value of Car Insurance
There you have it, the complete answer guide to your question, “how will buying auto insurance help you?” Now, you know that you need it to register and drive a vehicle. It also protects you, your driving privileges, and everyone else who uses the same roads you do.
So, never go without car insurance! Otherwise, you may end up not being able to drive at all.
Ready for more automotive tips and tricks like this? Feel free to check out our other news and blog posts then!