Penalties for driving without insurance in Oregon

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Driving without auto insurance in Oregon is not only illegal, but financially risky. In 2018, there were more than 50,000 car accidents. The state requires certain mandatory minimum auto insurance coverages for all vehicles. If you drive without car insurance in Oregon, you may end up facing legal consequences as well as being financially responsible for any damages you cause.

Having the required amount of car insurance ensures that you meet the state’s legal requirements while also protecting you financially from some of the consequences of auto incidents. While insurance can be costly, it can be far more expensive to go without it, and finding the right auto insurance company may save you money on rates.

Minimum insurance required in Oregon

Like most states, Oregon auto insurance has mandatory minimums. Oregon laws require that all drivers be covered by at least basic liability. Different states have slightly different parameters for basic liability.

Oregon requires that drivers carry both bodily injury protection for injuries caused to the other driver and their passengers. Drivers are also required to carry personal injury protection for themselves and their own passengers, as well as property damage liability and uninsured motorist coverage. Below are the minimum amounts of each type of coverage required by the state. Drivers with DWIs and other offenses on their records may be required to carry higher coverage limits.

  • Bodily injury liability: $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident
  • Property damage liability: $20,000 per accident
  • Personal injury protection: $15,000 per person
  • Uninsured motorist: $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident

Penalties for driving without insurance in Oregon

For those caught in Oregon driving without insurance, several legal consequences may occur. From receiving a ticket for no insurance to license suspension and vehicle impoundment, the penalty for driving without insurance in Oregon could be severe. State laws around auto insurance change at times. The below information is provided for general purposes and not as legal advice.

Fines

The driver may pay between $130 and $1,000 in fines, with the range depending on the court decision. Some cases may not reach the courts, in which case the fine may be set at the minimum of $130.

Suspensions

The driver’s license and driving privileges could be suspended for up to one year or until the driver obtains the required auto insurance and provides adequate proof of insurance. Registration for the vehicle may also be suspended, and the car may be impounded.

SR-22

If the driver’s license is suspended, the driver may be required to maintain an SR-22 form for up to three years after the incident as proof of insurance. Insurance companies file these forms to provide proof of coverage for high-risk drivers.

Fees

Fees are typically charged for the reinstatement of a license, the filing of SR-22 forms, insurance verification, retrieval of a vehicle from impoundment and reinstatement of registration. However, drivers will only have to pay for the ones that apply to their incident. For example, if your car is not impounded, you would not have to pay the associated fee.

Financial obligations

If at fault in an auto accident, the uninsured driver may be sued by the other driver for the financial damages caused. This could be for both personal injuries and property damages.

Penalties from Oregon’s online insurance verification system

Oregon employs a random auto insurance verification system to sample the population and ensure that drivers have the required auto insurance coverage. The state will issue a notice to a random collection of drivers every month, who must then provide proof of insurance or face a fee. If you are uninsured and have been driving, this could lead to further problems and you may face legal consequences for driving uninsured.

Failing to respond to the notice within 30 days, failing to prove the vehicle is insured or providing false information could all lead to license suspension.

Getting into an accident without insurance in Oregon

Car accidents can be severe even when the vehicles are insured and the medical bills are covered. They can be much worse, however, when there is no financial safety net prepared. Getting caught in Oregon driving without insurance and causing an accident could end up being far more expensive than paying for insurance up front.

There are all legal fees and penalties for driving uninsured, but there is also the financial burden that an at-fault accident may cause. Suppose you are at fault for an auto accident in Oregon and you do not have insurance. In that case, you may end up personally responsible for the financial damages done to the other driver, their passengers, and their vehicle.

Frequently asked questions

What if you provide false insurance information?

Providing falsified information as proof of insurance could lead to an immediate license suspension and potentially worse consequences. Driving without auto insurance is often considered a misdemeanor, but lying to the state about proof of insurance may be punishable as fraud.

How much is car insurance in Oregon?

The average cost of auto insurance in Oregon is $1,346 annually for full coverage and $610 annually for minimum coverage. For comparison, the U.S.’s average cost is $1,674 annually for full coverage and $565 annually for minimum coverage. Oregon has cheaper than average rates for full coverage and slightly higher than average rates for minimum coverage.

Is minimum coverage enough car insurance?

While the state minimum is all that is required by law, most people choose to purchase more coverage. Knowing how much auto insurance you need may be tricky. All insurance policies have coverage limits up to which you can receive a claim payout. For those concerned that the costs of an accident could exceed their insurance limits, extra coverage may be beneficial.

If I am driving someone else’s car, do I still need insurance?

Depending on the person’s auto insurance company and policy, you may be covered if you are listed as a driver on their auto insurance policy. However, this is not always the case and there are often limitations. Thankfully, there are policies designed for this situation, called non-owner car insurance policies. In situations where you regularly use another person’s vehicle, this may be more feasible than being added to their policy.

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 coverages that meet 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
Joshua Cox-Steib
Joshua Cox-Steib has two years of experience in writing for insurance domains such as Bankrate.com, Coverage.com, Thesimpledollar.com, Reviews.com, and more. His work has also been featured on such sites as Msn.com and BBB.org. His insurance writing career has spanned across multiple product lines, with a primary focus on auto insurance, life insurance, and home insurance.
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