Whenever you are pulled over for any reason, law enforcement officers are likely to run your driver’s license. However, a recent report from ABC Action News indicates there is no way to verify the legitimacy of a proof of insurance presented by drivers when pulled over or at the scene of a crash.
The report highlights the story of Arlene Summers, a woman whose vehicle was hit by an alleged drunk driver last December. The driver of that car presented a fake insurance card to police, but no one realized it until weeks later. Mike Hennessy, Florida Insurance Fraud Division investigator, said criminals often make fake insurance cards and sell them to uninsured people as a way to safeguard themselves in the event of an accident.
What happens when someone doesn’t have insurance?
The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles requires auto insurers to report the non-renewal or cancelation of any auto policies to the state department within 10 days. At that point, the state issues a notice of suspension to the driver, but that process could take weeks or even months to complete.
One estimate from the Insurance Information Institute indicates that up to 20 percent of drivers in Florida do not have adequate car insurance coverage. This forces other citizens to pick up the tab in higher premiums that provide underinsured and uninsured motorist coverage.
Not everyone is able to afford comprehensive uninsured motorist coverage, however, so a person could take a significant financial (and physical) hit when a driver causes an accident, but does not carry insurance.
If you are involved in a car accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver, you may need to take legal action to get the compensation you need and deserve. To learn more, contact an experienced Bradenton auto accident lawyer at Shapiro, Goldman, Babboni & Walsh.