Understanding Maryland’s Fines for Driving Without Insurance

Being caught driving without valid insurance in Maryland can lead to steep fines and penalties. This guide examines Maryland’s uninsured motorist laws, fines, and processes for reinstating your license after a lapse in coverage.

Maryland’s Uninsured Motorist Laws

Maryland is considered a “mandatory liability” state, meaning all drivers are required to carry a minimum level of liability insurance. The legal requirements are:

  • $30,000 bodily injury liability per person
  • $60,000 bodily injury liability per accident
  • $15,000 property damage liability

Or a combined single limit policy of $30,000.

As the owner of a registered vehicle in Maryland, you must maintain continuous insurance coverage. Even if your car is non-operational, stored, or parked on private property, you still need an active policy.

The penalties and fines for driving uninsured in Maryland are meant to deter motorists from completing the vehicle registration process without proper insurance.

Penalties for Driving Without Insurance in Maryland

If you are caught driving in Maryland without valid insurance, the penalties include:

  • Suspension of your driver’s license and registration
  • Reinstated license fee of $150
  • Restoration fee of $25 – $180 depending on number of offenses
  • SR-22 requirement for 3 years
  • Fine of $150 to $2500 per offense

You may also be required to keep an SR-22 on file for 3 years if you cause an accident while uninsured. SR-22 certifies you now have active insurance.

If pulled over, you’ll receive a citation requiring you to appear in court. The judge will impose fines and order the MVA to suspend your license.

How Maryland Enforces Insurance Requirements

Maryland’s Motor Vehicle Administration utilizes several methods to catch uninsured drivers:

  • Random database checks – The MVA runs regular computer checks comparing issued policies against registered vehicles. Any gaps in coverage are flagged.

  • Traffic stops – Police verify insurance during routine traffic stops by requesting your proof of insurance card.

  • After accidents – Liability insurance information is exchanged and verified after any crash. Lack of coverage will be reported.

  • Driver’s license renewal – You must confirm current insurance to renew your MD license. Invalid or expired policies are detected.

  • Anonymous tips – The public can report suspected uninsured drivers to the MVA’s uninsured motorist tip line.

With this combination of enforcement methods, it’s nearly impossible for Maryland motorists to evade insurance requirements for long.

Uninsured Motorist Claim Processes in Maryland

If you are involved in an accident caused by an uninsured driver, you can file a claim through your own policy’s uninsured motorist (UM) bodily injury coverage.

The process typically involves:

  • Reporting details of the accident to your insurer
  • Providing evidence that the at-fault driver was uninsured
  • Allowing your insurer to investigate and confirm lack of coverage
  • Negotiating a settlement amount for your injuries, losses and damages
  • Receiving compensation through your own policy up to UM limits

This protects Maryland drivers from bearing the burden of costs when hit by an uninsured motorist. Contact your insurer promptly if this occurs.

Regaining Your License After a Lapse in Insurance

If you receive notice that your license is being suspended over a lapse in insurance coverage, you must go through a reinstatement process. The steps include:

  • Acquiring a new car insurance policy and having the insurer electronically notify the MVA

  • Paying the MVA’s $150 reinstatement fee and applicable restoration fees

  • Providing proof of insurance verification to the MVA

  • Possibly filing an SR-22 form for 3 years if you had an at-fault accident while uninsured

  • Paying any uninsured motorist fines imposed by the court

  • Waiting for confirmation from the MVA that your driving privileges are fully reinstated

Completing these steps will get your license and registration back in good standing.

Avoiding Fines Through Continuous Insurance Coverage

The best way to steer clear of Maryland’s penalties for uninsured driving is maintaining insurance on your registered vehicle at all times with no gaps in coverage. Smart tactics include:

  • Review policy expiration dates to renew before lapsing

  • Note renewal deadlines on your calendar with reminders

  • Allow auto-pay from your bank account for renewals

  • Have your insurer automatically renew your policy every 6-12 months

  • Inform the MVA and insurer any time you sell or transfer the vehicle

  • Shop for cheaper rates periodically so insurance stays affordable

  • Ask about discounts to lower your premium costs

Keeping continuous auto insurance, with no interruptions or lapses, keeps you compliant with Maryland law and avoids fines.

Finding Low Cost Insurance to Fit Your Budget

The high cost of car insurance premiums can make it tempting to drop coverage, but the penalties are never worth it. If standard rates are too expensive, research ways to lower your insurance costs:

  • Increase deductibles on collision/comprehensive to $500-$1000 to save 10-40%

  • Ask insurers for all available discounts you qualify for

  • Take defensive driver courses for reduced rates

  • Drop optional protections like roadside assistance if necessary

  • Compare quotes from insurers like Geico, State Farm, and Progressive

  • Limit miles driven to earn a low-mileage discount

  • See if your employer, school, or organization has an insurance partner

Finding cheaper, affordable insurance ensures you can maintain continuous coverage and avoid Maryland’s hefty fines for driving without insurance. Don’t take the risk of driving uninsured.

Consequences are Severe for Uninsured Driving

Driving without proper insurance in Maryland puts you at risk of substantial fines, license suspension, court fees, and other penalties if caught. Maintain active coverage at all times to avoid consequences.

Use this guide to understand Maryland’s mandatory insurance laws, enforcement practices, and processes for restoring your license if it’s suspended. With smart insurance management, you can steer clear of costly uninsured motorist penalties.

Driving Without Insurance In Maryland: Everything You Need To Know


What is the penalty of not having insurance in MD?

Penalties For Not Having Insurance If a person is convicted of driving without insurance, they will face a $150 fine for the first 30 days lapsed and $7 for each additional day. The maximum fine a person can receive is $2,500.

What happens if you drive without insurance in MD?

In Maryland, driving without insurance is a misdemeanor criminal citation. This means that in addition to severe fines, you could face jail time & cause you to lose your license. A conviction on a first offense can carry 5 points on your license, a $1000 fine and up to one year in jail.

What is the grace period for new car insurance in Maryland?

The Maryland new-car insurance grace period is 7 to 30 days in most cases. The new-car grace period is how long insured drivers are allowed to drive a newly purchased vehicle before adding it to an existing car insurance policy.

What is the penalty for driving without a license in Maryland?

Penalties. Driving without a license is an offense that can land a person in jail. Licenses suspensions and driving without a license in Maryland would both be considered a “must appear ticket.” For a first offense, the fine can be up to $500, including up to 60 days in jail.

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