Do You Need Car Insurance in AZ?
Automobile insurance is a requirement for drivers in almost every state. In Arizona, driving without car insurance is against the law. Car insurance is a safety net for drivers that prevents them from absorbing personal liability for collisions. In an at-fault accident in Arizona, your insurance company will pay for victims’ damages rather than you having to pay out of pocket. Understanding and obeying Arizona’s car insurance requirements could help you avoid repercussions such as a suspended driver’s license or personal liability for a crash.
Why You Need Car Insurance in Arizona
Arizona, like most states, uses a tort-based car accident system. To obtain financial recovery for a car accident, a victim’s attorney must prove the other party’s fault. If you are at fault for an auto accident in Arizona, it will be your responsibility to pay for everyone else’s damages. Instead of paying these costs out of pocket, Arizona laws make drivers establish proof of financial responsibility in the form of auto insurance. Every driver in Arizona must carry insurance policies that meet or exceed the state’s requirements.
- $10,000 in liability for property damages
- $15,000 in liability for injury to one person
- $30,000 in liability for injuries to multiple people
Drivers cannot register their vehicles without showing the Motor Vehicle Division (MVD) proof of insurance. Drivers must also carry this proof with them when they drive to show police officers during traffic stops. Failure to have proof of insurance could result in temporary license suspension until you can show the courts you do have insurance. Driving while uninsured or underinsured is a crime that could lead to more significant penalties.
Is Driving Without it Illegal?
It is illegal to drive without insurance in the state of Arizona. State statutes make it mandatory for every motor vehicle operator to purchase proof of financial responsibility in the form of liability insurance. Operators of motorcycles and mopeds must also carry adequate insurance. If you fail to purchase insurance before operating a motor vehicle, the MVD has the right to suspend your driving privileges. The MVD can suspend your driver’s license and/or vehicle registration until you remedy the issue.
Reinstating your driving privileges after the MVD catches you driving without insurance is expensive. The penalty for driving without insurance is the mandatory use of an SR22 form for three years. SR22 insurance is more expensive than typical auto insurance in Arizona. You must carry this insurance for three years from the date of your driver’s license reinstatement. You must also pay a reinstatement fee.
You only need proof of financial responsibility if you plan on driving the vehicle you are registering. You may temporarily de-insure a vehicle that will be out of commission for a few weeks, months or years without legal penalties. De-insuring a vehicle will help you avoid paying insurance on a vehicle you are not driving. Make sure you reinsure the vehicle, however, once you are ready to take it out of retirement.
Accidents While Uninsured or Underinsured
Driving without insurance is not only illegal – it is also financially irresponsible. If you cause a car accident in Arizona while uninsured or underinsured, you could face personal liability for victims’ damages. You may owe thousands of dollars for victims’ medical costs and property damage repairs, not to mention your own losses and damages. You may owe a substantial compensation award to people you injured or killed through an act of negligence on the road.
Having enough insurance could save you from having to pay for others’ damages out of pocket after an at-fault accident. If you purchase additional forms of insurance, your provider could also pay for your losses after an at-fault collision. Keeping up with Arizona’s car insurance requirement could protect you from legal trouble such as fines, penalties and the suspension of your driving privileges. Do your duty as a driver by complying with the state’s financial responsibility law.