Driving without insurance in Arkansas

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Arkansas driving without insurance may provide marginal savings up front, but comes with the risk of quite a few severe financial and legal consequences. Plus, because of Arkansas’ insurance verification system (AOIVS), these consequences are virtually unavoidable for unlicensed drivers. In addition to facing costly fines and other legal penalties, driving without insurance has other impacts that can affect drivers in the long term.

Minimum insurance required in Arkansas

Arkansas state law requires that all drivers carry liability for bodily injury and property damage. The minimum amount drivers must have is 25/50/25:

  • $25,000 per person for bodily injury or death
  • $50,000 per accident for bodily injury or death
  • $25,000 per accident for property damage

Additionally, drivers also need to carry the following coverages, but may reject them in writing if they choose:

  • $25,000 per person for uninsured/ underinsured motorist bodily injury
  • $50,000 per accident for uninsured/ underinsured motorist bodily injury
  • $25,000 per accident for uninsured/ underinsured motorist property damage
  • $5,000 for medical benefits
  • $5,000 for accident death benefits
  • $140 per week for lost earnings

Penalties for driving without insurance in Arkansas

When it comes to what the penalty for driving without insurance in Arkansas is, there are actually a few. In addition, the penalties for driving without insurance get exponentially more severe with each offense.

For example, regardless of past convictions, any conviction means you can expect to have your license plate removed and your registration suspended. Additionally, your vehicle will be impounded if you are in an accident and found to be uninsured.

Each offense also has a fine associated with it. The amount of which depends on your judge and how many past offenses you have. The most important consequence to remaining uninsured is that you face up to a year incarceration time on your third offense. In some cases, paying a fine may reduce the length of your sentence.

1st Offense 2nd Offense 3rd Offense
Jail time No No Up to 1 year
Fine $50-$250 Minimum of $250 up to $500 Minimum of $500 up to $1,000
License plate Removal Yes Yes Yes
Registration suspension Yes Yes Yes
Vehicle impoundment Yes, if involved in an accident Yes, if involved in an accident Yes, if involved in an accident

Fees from Arkansas’s online insurance verification system

Arkansas recently enacted the AOIVS, which is the Arkansas Online Insurance Verification System. Previous electronic systems were only updated every 30 days. With AOIVS, the system updates in real time and is meant to more rapidly identify uninsured drivers and discourage the practice.

If it is found that you are uninsured, you will be sent a $100 fine in the mail. If you do not pay this by the form’s due date, your registration will be suspended. Visit the AOIVS webpage if you would like to explore its functionality.

Getting into an accident without insurance

Arkansas is a tort state, which means at-fault drivers who are in an Arkansas driving without insurance accident are financially responsible for all damages their driving causes. Though the state-required minimum liability limits are set at $25,000, $50,000 and $25,000, these numbers do not represent the maximum amount of money drivers may be responsible for after an accident.

If you cause $60,000 in property damage, for example, you will be responsible for $60,000, regardless of whether or not you have insurance. Should you not have insurance, you will have to pay for all damages out of pocket. For this reason, most experts recommend having the highest limits you can reasonably afford.

If involved in an accident without insurance in place — whether you are at-fault or not — you would receive a ticket for having no insurance, your vehicle will be impounded, your registration will be suspended and your license plates will be removed. A judge will also assign a fine for the incident. For a first offense, the maximum amount you will pay is $250, while the minimum is $50. If you cause an accident while driving without insurance, you can likely expect the fine to be the maximum amount.

Frequently asked questions

What if you provide false insurance information?

The consequences of driving without insurance in Arkansas are severe, but purposefully providing false insurance information will make matters even worse.

Providing an insurance company false information is known as insurance fraud. There are two kinds of fraud, when it comes to insurance — hard and soft. Hard is when you fake an incident to receive an insurance payout. Soft is when you lie to an insurance company to get a lower premium or approved for a policy. Most drivers guilty of soft fraud will have their policy canceled, and any claims in the midst of being processed will be denied.

If you provide false insurance information to the police after an accident or being pulled over you will likely pay a series of fines and have your license suspended. It is also possible that you may even serve some time in jail if you are a repeat offender. Insurance databases easily combat fake proof of insurance cards. If you are pulled over and do not have insurance, it is best to tell the truth to avoid complications or other consequences.

How much is car insurance in Arkansas?

The average cost of car insurance in Arkansas is $1,914. The U.S. average is $1,674, making Arkansas $240 more per year, on average, than the national average. Arkansas drivers may pay less or more than these averages, however. ZIP code and state are just two of the many factors that insurers look at when determining your premium.

Does Arkansas issue SR-22s?

Yes, Arkansas does require you to obtain and provide SR-22s in some circumstances. If you are caught driving without insurance, it is possible a judge may order you to file one with the state.

An SR-22 is simply a form submitted by your insurer to the DMV that proves you are carrying the minimum amount of insurance mandated by the state of Arkansas. Most drivers ordered to submit an SR-22 must have one on file for three years.

What is the cheapest car insurance company in Arkansas?

The cheapest insurance company for one driver may not be the cheapest for another. Our study of 2021 rates from Quadrant Information Services indicated that a 40-year-old driver with a clean driving record may find the cheapest rates with State Farm.

Methodology

Bankrate utilizes Quadrant Information Services to analyze 2021 rates for all ZIP codes and carriers in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. Quoted rates are based on a 40-year-old male and female driver with a clean driving record, good credit and the following full coverage limits:

  • $100,000 bodily injury liability per person
  • $300,000 bodily injury liability per accident
  • $50,000 property damage liability per accident
  • $100,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per person
  • $300,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per accident
  • $500 collision deductible
  • $500 comprehensive deductible

To determine minimum coverage limits, Bankrate used minimum coverage that meets each state’s requirements. Our base profile drivers own a 2019 Toyota Camry, commute five days a week and drive 12,000 miles annually.

These are sample rates and should only be used for comparative purposes.

Written by
Lauren Ward
Insurance Contributor
Lauren Ward has nearly 10 years of experience in writing for insurance domains such as Bankrate, The Simple Dollar, and Reviews.com. She covers auto, homeowners, and life insurance, as well other topics in the personal finance industry.
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