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What are my legal options if my car insurance lapsed and I had an accident?

As a licensed driver on Georgia roadways, you’re required to carry car insurance which will help cover damages after a car accident. If your insurance policy lapsed and you were involved in a car accident, don’t wait to contact an Americus car accident lawyer about the potential implications and legal options available to you.

Call The Shrable Law Firm, P.C. at (229) 349-6291 or use the online contact form to schedule your free consultation.

What is a “lapse” in auto insurance?

A lapse in coverage occurs when you don’t have auto insurance either through not renewing your policy, not paying, or being canceled by your carrier for breaching the terms of the policy. In Georgia, going 10 days without insurance is considered a lapse in coverage.

You May Have a Grace Period, But Let This Be a One-Time Thing

A car insurance policy doesn’t instantly lapse every time a premium payment is late or missed because insurers are required to provide their policyholders a grace period after a payment was late or missed before the policy can lapse. Most grace periods are usually 30 days from the date the payment was due. Many insurers will reinstate a policy within the grace period if payment is brought current.

Penalties for Auto Insurance Lapse in Georgia

When the state is notified that your insurance coverage has lapsed, you may incur penalties including:

  • Immediate suspension of your car registration
  • A lapse fee of $25
  • A $60 reinstatement fee

If your car insurance isn’t reinstated within 30 days of the lapse, your car registration will be suspended and no new license plate tags will be issued. Driving with a suspended registration could result in a misdemeanor charge and your vehicle could be impounded. 

What to Do if Your Insurance Lapsed and You Weren’t at Fault

If you were in an accident caused by another driver’s wrongful actions or negligence, you shouldn’t have to be financially responsible for the accident. Georgia doesn’t have a “No Pay, No Play” law, which would prohibit uninsured drivers from collecting money from an insured driver who hits them.

An Americus car accident lawyer will help you prove the other driver’s recklessness or negligence was the cause of the accident and ensure that they’re held liable for the damages.

What to Do if Your Insurance Lapsed and You Were at Fault

Drivers with lapsed car insurance that are found to be at-fault for a car accident will:

  • Be charged with a misdemeanor
  • Lose their car registration
  • Be personally liable for paying the medical bills, lost income, repair costs, pain and suffering, and other expenses stemming from the accident

Georgia requires drivers to carry specific minimum coverages for various types of coverage, including uninsured motorists. A policy’s uninsured motorist coverage will serve as a substitute for the at-fault driver’s policy if they didn’t have an active car insurance policy at the time of the accident.

Uninsured at the time of your car accident? We can help.

Insured or uninsured, what matters in a car accident case is who’s at fault for the injuries and damages and what insurance policies are available to pay them. 

At The Shrable Law Firm, P.C., your welfare is our priority. Our lawyers provide personalized legal guidance in every step of your case and ensure you understand all your legal options. Contact us at (229) 349-6291 or online to schedule a free consultation. 

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