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There is no upside to trying to save some money by driving without car insurance in Nebraska. The modest amount you might save by circumventing the law will be far outweighed by the serious consequences that you will face for being uninsured. In Nebraska, fines for driving without insurance are steep. In addition, license suspension and even potential incarceration time can be an outcome for uninsured drivers.
Minimum insurance required in Nebraska
Auto liability insurance provides crucial protection for drivers if they are involved in an accident and are determined to be responsible for injury to others or damage to their property. Nebraska law provides that drivers in the state must carry certain minimum amounts of liability coverage to address this situation.
These required minimum limits of liability insurance in Nebraska are:
- $25,000 per person for bodily injury
- $50,000 per accident for bodily injury, meaning for more than a single person
- $25,000 per accident for property damage
In today’s world, these minimum limits may not provide sufficient protection for you and your family if you are at-fault in a serious accident. It is wise to review these limits with your carrier, determine your total assets that could be at risk in a lawsuit, understand insurance options in Nebraska, and set your limits accordingly.
Penalties for driving without insurance in Nebraska
If you are convicted of driving without the minimum amount of liability insurance in Nebraska, you will likely have your license automatically suspended. In addition, you will be fined and be required to take specific steps to verify your financial responsibility for future driving liabilities. Penalties and fines become increasingly more severe with subsequent offenses.
Failure to show proof of insurance
You will be issued a citation for “No Proof of Insurance” if you are the owner of a vehicle and you are not able to produce evidence of insurance when requested by a Nebraska law enforcement officer. If there was, in fact, the requisite insurance in place when the citation was issued and you simply did not have proof with you, there are steps that can be taken to remove the suspension.
You will need to submit a Letter of Verification to the Department of Motor Vehicles showing insurance was in place. Upon receipt, the DMV will “possibly withdraw the suspension from your record.” With many insurers, you have the ability to produce digital proof of insurance via the insurer app, which can help you avoid this scenario.
Conviction of No Proof of Insurance
If you are unable to prove that you were properly insured upon receiving a citation for “No Proof of Insurance”, you could be convicted of this offense and have your driver’s license suspended. To reinstate your driver’s license, you will be required to pay a $50 fee and comply with Nebraska’s SR-22 requirements.
In order to reinstate your driver’s license in Nebraska after it has been suspended for driving without insurance you will need to follow prescribed steps to prove your financial responsibility for future accidents. In effect, you need to formally verify that you are properly insured. This requirement may be issued by a judge or DMV.
In Nebraska, the standard means of proving financial responsibility and satisfying the requirement is by filing an SR-22 Certificate of Insurance form with the Nebraska DMV. The SR-22 form will be completed and submitted by your auto insurance company and it must remain on file for three years from the date the citation for “No Proof of Insurance” was issued. It is important to know that a separate SR-22 form must be filed for each vehicle owned by the convicted driver.
Getting into an accident without insurance
Whenever you are involved in an automobile accident in Nebraska, whether you are at fault or not, the law enforcement officer at the scene will ask involved drivers to provide proof of insurance. This is a required step in the officer’s accident reporting process.
If you are unable to provide adequate proof of insurance at the scene, you will generally be given a court date within 10 days, at which time you will be required to present proof that you were insured at the time of the accident. If you can not do so, you will face the consequences outlined above.
Nebraska is an at-fault state which uses a comparative negligence standard to allocate responsibility among those involved in a car accident. Unlike in a no-fault state, this means that whether insured or not, your responsibility will be set by how much of a percentage each party in the accident was at-fault. With insurance, your carrier will cover the portion of your liability to the other driver.
The consequences for a driver who is not insured and involved in an accident in Nebraska is that the driver will need to shoulder the portion of liability attributed to the driver for the accident on his or her own. In some cases, a court judgment could potentially hold an uninsured driver financially responsible for untold medical costs and permanent injuries suffered by the other drivers and his passengers. This could lead to bankruptcy and worse.
Frequently asked questions
What if you provide false insurance information?
A conviction for driving without insurance in Nebraska will have consequences that could take several years to unravel. It would make things worse and cause additional consequences to provide false information about your coverage to a law enforcement officer. Providing false insurance information is a crime that carries potential serious penalties. Providing false information to your insurer can also lead to policy cancellation or the denial of a claim.
How much is car insurance in Nebraska?
The average annual car insurance premium for full coverage in Nebraska is $1,531 or $128 per month, based on quoted annual premiums from Quadrant Information Services. The exact premium you will pay will vary from these amounts based upon the factors considered by car insurance companies in setting premiums. These include your age, location, driving history and available discounts for which you qualify.
Should I report all accidents to my car insurance company?
It is a common myth that car insurance companies always raise rates when they learn of a policyholder’s incident. Not all claims affect your insurance rates, but the risk of not reporting an incident, even if you are not filing a claim for reimbursement, can potentially leave you open to an expensive liability lawsuit. If you failed to promptly notify your car insurance company at the time of the incident and do need coverage after the fact, your claim may be later denied.