Owning and driving a car is expensive. It doesn’t matter if you’re driving a brand new Prius or a 15-year-old Saturn, things add up. You have to worry about gas, parking, tolls, and its maintenance—not to mention the actual price you paid for your vehicle. Too bad you need it to get to work every day. When public transit, biking, or walking isn’t a practical alternative, some people think they can drive without insurance to escape some of the expense of driving a car. While it does offer immediate savings for your budget, it’s a risky long-term move. There are significant consequences to driving without insurance, and many of them come at a cost to your checkbook!

An officer can find you :

Let’s say you get caught for speeding. The police officer will ask for your license, registration, and insurance. The office can find you if you can’t produce proof of insurance, and this will be in addition to your traffic ticket that got your pulled over in the first place.

In 2017, the average annual cost of car insurance in the U.S. was just over $1,500. This is a significant chunk of money when you’re on a small budget. If you’re tempted to pocket this cash by skipping insurance, know that you could be facing a huge fine if you’re pulled over.

You might not be able to drive :

The officer can also suspend your license and vehicle registration if you’re caught driving without insurance. Getting these back takes a lot of time and money. You’ll have to show proof you’re insured before you can get your license and registration reinstated. On top of the new cost of insurance to your budget, you’ll also have to pay for the DMV’s administrative fees for a new license and registration.

Insurance will be more expensive :

Any traffic violation ticket will affect your insurance premiums, as the insurance company uses your driving history as a way to assess your likelihood of getting into an accident. An insurance company will also increase your premiums if you were caught driving without insurance because it signals you could be a risk.

It makes an accident worse :

The reason why you have insurance is so you’re better protected in case you get in an accident. It helps offset the cost of damages and/or injuries sustained by the other driver(s) in an accident you caused. Depending on the type of accident, repairs and medical fees can be expensive. In the worst case scenario, these costs would be so great you couldn’t afford to cover them on your own.

In the case of small accidents with minimal damage, online payday loans are a quick and easy way of getting the money you need for these urgent bills. Online lenders of short-term loans make it easy to secure a necessary loan online. Many of these lenders are like MoneyKey, who promise an uncomplicated and fast borrowing experience. The payday loans from MoneyKey often arrive in one business day, making them an ideal alternative to time-intensive alternatives.

But when it comes to larger accidents that result in huge property damage or personal injury, you would need to rely on a larger line of credit or personal loan. Larger loans often require in-depth credit checks and collateral, and lenders will reject your application if you don’t meet their strict regulations.

If bad credit or a lack of assets gets in your way, you still have options, but they’re not ideal. You can contact friends or family who could lend you the money, but borrowing from loved ones is a risky situation for your relationship. You can speak with your creditors to see if you can create a payment plan for what you owe, but you’ll face interest and other fees to opt into this payment plan.

Once you break it down, the risk of driving without insurance is too great for your finances. While $1,500 a year in premiums may seem like a lot, it’s cheaper than covering an accident on your own, paying off fines, and paying to reinstate your license. Remember these consequences the next time you think about going without insurance, and you’ll make the right choice.

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