Is it illegal to drive uninsured in Kentucky?

On Behalf of | Jan 3, 2020 | Criminal Defense |

In Kentucky, drivers must have minimum liability car insurance, along with 48 other states.

While there is a legal obligation to purchase car insurance, about 11.5 percent of Kentucky residents are braving the roads uninsured. Driving uninsured not only puts yourself and other motorists at risk, but it also puts you in jeopardy of being penalized.

What are the legal penalties for driving uninsured?

Kentucky, along with 21 other states, has begun electronically monitoring vehicles to see if drivers have car insurance. Technological advancements like this have increased the probability of being caught while driving uninsured. If you are convicted for driving without insurance, you might face the following penalties for a first-time offense:

  • Fines ranging from $500 to $1,000
  • Jail time up to 90 days

You could also have your driver’s license suspended for up to one year. This suspension can be lifted if you provide proof of insurance.

Are there any exceptions to this rule?

If you have moved to Kentucky to attend a university, you have the legal right to maintain your out-of-state car insurance. Many times, there is no need to purchase a new policy from a Kentucky insurer. Kentucky law states that you should keep your student identification card on you while driving in the state.

Additionally, if you are an active member of the military, you can use an out-of-state insurance policy. It is wise to keep evidence of your active military status with you in case an officer pulls you over.

If you do not meet either of the exceptions and have received an uninsured notice letter from the police, you might want to speak with an attorney. An attorney can prepare you for the court process if you are being sued. They can also answer your questions about obtaining insurance.