Although car insurance isn’t required in Virginia, you can get into legal trouble if you’re caught driving either without insurance or without proof that you paid the uninsured motor vehicle fee. Additionally, insurance is required for those who need an SR-22, which we’ll detail below. The DMV monitors liability insurance coverage through the Insurance Verification Program, where insurance carriers give the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) your insurance and vehicle information.
If you register a vehicle and lie about your car’s financial responsibility requirements, you’ll face the following penalties:
- $600 noncompliance fee
- SR-22 requirement for three years
- Reinstatement fee
- Suspension of license, registration, and license plates
Your suspension will end once you pay the fees and furnish an SR-22, which your insurance company will file with the state’s DMV electronically.
Let’s say you get into a car accident, and the law enforcement officer requires you to show proof of insurance or payment of the fee. If you don’t provide this proof within 30 days of the accident, it’s a Class 2 misdemeanor, resulting in either or both of:
- Jail time: Six months maximum
- Fine: $1,000 maximum1
Proof of financial responsibility can be in the form of:
- Certificate of self-insurance
- Evidence that you paid the $500 uninsured motor vehicle fee
- Paper or electronic insurance identification card
- SR-22 form