Driving without Insurance in Alberta – Risks, Fines & Consequences

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Like in other parts of Canada, driving without insurance has several consequences. Fundamentally, it’s not a criminal act. But you will have many other risks that you will find out in this article.

Continue reading to know what exactly happens if caught driving without insurance.

What is the ‘Driving without Insurance’ Law in Alberta?

Vehicle insurance plays an important role in terms of traffic regulation. The traffic safety act states that you aren’t allowed to –

  • Drive an uninsured vehicle on a highway
  • Park an uninsured motor vehicle on a highway
  • Drive someone else’s uninsured motor vehicle on the highway
  • Park someone else’s an uninsured motor vehicle on the highway

What are the Consequences of Driving without Insurance?

There won’t be any criminal charges against you if you drive an uninsured car. Nevertheless, driving without insurance includes a variety of risks.

For example, you have to pay huge fines if you are driving without a license or license suspended and finally get your insurance premium high. Other than these, towing and storing the vehicle will cost a lot.

In a worse scenario, you’ll have several consequences if your uninsured vehicle gets into an accident.

Find out about the penalties and fines below.

What is the Penalty for Driving Without Insurance in Alberta?

You will face a fine for driving an uninsured vehicle specifically. You’ll have to serve a jail term if you fail to pay the fines. Besides, if someone gets arrested for criminal acts along with driving an uninsured vehicle, they will be both charged for the criminal act and driving an uninsured vehicle.

What is the Fine for Driving Without Insurance in Alberta?

Basically, jail or other penalties come later. First comes the fines. The fines will vary depending on your profile as a driver. That can include the number of times you have committed the violation.

Get a better idea from the following:

First-time Driving Without Insurance:

You’ll have to pay a minimum $2875 fine if you commit the offence for the first time. The fine can reach as high as $10,000. If you fail to pay the fine within 45 days, you will be imprisoned for 7 days to 6 months.

Second-time Driving Without Insurance:

If you get caught again within 5 years of the first offence committed, you have to pay a minimum $5000 fine. And the fine can be as high as $20,000. Again, if you fail to pay the fines in 60 days, you will again be jailed for 6 months.

Note that none of these fines include the towing and storage cost. That means it’ll cost you more money outside the fines.

Is There Any Demerit Point for Driving without Insurance?

Almost all driving offences come with fines and demerit points. However, you won’t get any demerit points for driving without insurance in Alberta. Still, driving without insurance makes you suffer in many other ways.

What Happened after Getting into an Accident without Insurance?

Having an accident with an uninsured vehicle has several consequences. The owners face a difficult time involving lawsuits.

Let’s explain what kind of trouble you can be in.

Hefty Compensation

First, you’ll have to bear the expense of all the damages in the accident. You must pay compensation for the second party’s car damage. And it involves your vehicle and other vehicles in a crash.

So, there could be more vehicles, and you will have to pay for all the damages. Keep in mind that the accident might not be your fault. In that case, imagine the pain of paying for all the damages.

Read Also: Personal Injury Compensation Rates

Pay Medical Expenses

Other than car damage, there’ll be more financial backlash. For instance, people generally get injured in a car crash, whether minor or major. And if you’re found guilty of the accident, you will have to pay the person back all their medical expenses.

Income Loss Compensation

Furthermore, you will have to pay for their lost income. You might have to compensate in many ways, as the accident can change anyone’s life.

If we add up the expenses, it will be several thousand dollars. In a circumstance like this, if you don’t have car insurance, you might be announced bankrupt at a point.

Legal Complexity

You should know one more thing here. If your uninsured vehicle crashes, and you get injured, but it’s not your fault, you can’t even blame the at-fault party. As a result, you aren’t receiving any compensation for the damages done.

Is There Any Fine/penalty If You Fail to Show the Insurance Paper?

As the law dictates, if you have valid car insurance, you must be able to show the insurance paper if a police officer asks. If you can’t show the paper, you will face a fine of around $81.  However, there are no penalties like demerit points or jail terms. 

Final Notes

Now, you can see the importance of insurance papers while driving. You can be in an accident anytime because it is not entirely in your control.

That’s why you must ensure you have enough insurance coverage to protect your finances in an unpredictable situation like a car crash. Besides, as you can see that driving without insurance has serious consequences, you should get car insurance ASAP.

And if you are charged for driving without insurance, talk to an expert lawyer to sort out the issue.

FAQs

If you have any more queries, check the following question to get more information on driving without insurance.

Is the penalty for driving without insurance the same for all vehicles?

Yes, the penalty for driving without insurance applies to all vehicles in Canada. Canada has a uniform law reading this.

How do you get car insurance when you are uninsured?

In Canada, you can get car insurance in 4 ways: from a licensed insurance agent, a registered insurance broker, an insurance company, or a lender when you apply for a loan. You can compare coverage and cost to get the best insurance quotes.

Can the license be suspended for driving without car insurance?

Yes, it can be one of the consequences of driving an uninsured vehicle and conducting a criminal act. If you are involved in a criminal offence, the court can suspend your license and impose compensation, fines, jail time or both.

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