How big of a risk are uninsured drivers in New York?

On Behalf of | Jan 28, 2022 | Personal Injury |

Driving is a dangerous activity. One person assumes control over a piece of machinery that weighs thousands of pounds. That machine is capable of killing people, demolishing other vehicles or causing substantial damage to property.

The average person doesn’t have the savings or the income to reimburse other people if they cause a major wreck, which is why New York requires that drivers obtain motor vehicle liability insurance. A driver’s policy primarily protects them from liability, meaning it will cover the losses that another driver incurs.

If you get into a crash with a driver who doesn’t have insurance, you could have a lot of unpaid vehicle repair and medical bills. How likely are you to encounter an uninsured driver in New York?

 Most drivers in New York follow the law

Maybe it’s because the state has strict consequences for driving without insurance, or perhaps it is a side effect of the stereotype that New Yorkers are aggressive drivers. Whatever the cause, more drivers in New York than most other places consistently maintain insurance on their vehicles.

Overall, New York has a relatively low rate of uninsured drivers. Only an estimated 4.1% of drivers on the New York roads are uninsured, based on 2019 data. However, that’s still a one in 25 chance that the driver who hits you won’t have an active insurance policy on their vehicle.

What happens after a crash with a driver who doesn’t have liability coverage?

There are many things that can go wrong if you get into a wreck with an uninsured driver. One of the biggest issues is the possibility that they will just speed off from the scene of the crash, trying to avoid responsibility for the wreck they cause.

Even if they stop and sheepishly admit that they don’t have insurance, you will be the one scrambling to protect yourself because of their negligence. Thankfully, New York requires that every driver carry no-fault personal injury protection coverage in addition to liability protection. You can make a claim against your own no-fault coverage after a wreck caused by an uninsured driver. You can also review the situation closely to determine if their contributions to the wreck justify a personal injury lawsuit.

Knowing how your insurance works and handling the claim properly will help you reduce your financial losses after a New York car crash.