As most of us are aware, the State of Connecticut requires all registered vehicles be insured. Do you meet the CT DMV’s compliance laws?
An article on the Insurance Information Institute’s website states that,
“in 2012, 12.6 percent of motorists, or about one in eight drivers, was uninsured, according to a 2014 study by the Insurance Research Council (IRC). The percentage has been declining in recent years. Oklahoma had the highest percentage of uninsured motorists, 26 percent, and Massachusetts had the lowest, 4 percent.”
Connecticut’s estimated percentage of uninsured motorists was 8 percent in 2012. Still high when you consider Connecticut was not in the top ten lowest uninsured motorists states.
Accordingly, the State of Connecticut has cracked down on the number of people driving without insurance.
When a vehicle is registered with the Connecticut Department of Motor Vehicle, you must provide an auto insurance identification card proving that you have liability insurance.
If insurance is cancelled on a registered vehicle, the insurance company notifies the Connecticut Department of Motor Vehicles.
“Whenever insurance coverage is cancelled, the DMV is notified by the insurance company and the registrant is mailed a Warning Notice offering the opportunity to enter into a consent agreement, obtain insurance, and pay a fine of $200. By doing so, no further action will be taken against the registrant as long as insurance is maintained.”
To highlight what happens, if your vehicle is registered with no insurance, the Connecticut DMV will fine you $200.
Now, that might not seem like a big deal to some. After all, we are required to have an active auto insurance policy so we should be happy that the CT DMV does whatever possible to ensure insurance compliance.
That being said, it means if you do not have insurance for one day, you will be fined.
Let’s dig a little deeper and take a look at some examples.
Say you forgot to pay your auto insurance bill and you are a couple days past the cancellation date. You will still be fined because you went without insurance for a period of time.
It does not matter that you did not drive the vehicle during that time.
What about if you don’t drive your vehicle anymore? Maybe your car broke down and is in need of repair and you let your insurance cancel because you have no intention of driving it anymore?
Well, if you do not cancel the registration on the vehicle, you will receive a fine for $200.
Again, the DMV isn’t aware of what you are doing with your vehicle. All they know is that you have a registered vehicle with no insurance.
To avoid the fine for an inoperable or stored vehicle:
“You may turn your marker plates into any DMV and request that they be placed on ‘hold.’ At that time, you may then drop all insurance coverage on the vehicle. You may also cancel your plates and request a refund if a year or more remains unused.”
The same thing applies when you sell your vehicle. You may not have the vehicle anymore but make sure you cancel the registration.
The least obvious example is when you decide to purchase a new vehicle and you are trading in one of your current vehicles.
Usually, the car dealership will take care of the registration process for you. But maybe the car dealership hasn’t gotten the documentation completed in time and has to wait until the following morning. Maybe it was a busy weekend and they made the change on Monday.
If you remove the insurance from the vehicle that you are trading in and the plates have not been transferred or cancelled, you will be fined. Double check with your salesman at the car dealership to confirm the exact day they are making the change for you.
Finally, the Department of Motor Vehicle in Connecticut has made it much easier to cancel your registration.
Instead of trying to figure out when they are open and possibly waiting in line all day, now you can cancel the plates online.
All you need is your name, date of birth, driver’s license # and license plate #.
Remember, it is your responsibility to either cancel your registration or transfer it to another vehicle. According to the DMV’s website:
“Failure to comply with the warning notice will result in the mailing of a Suspension Notice. At that time, a hearing may be requested. An adverse decision following an administrative hearing will result in:
- Suspension of registration
- Loss of all privileges to renew or register ANY motor vehicle”
Be aware of your insurance compliance and let’s work together to get Connecticut in the top ten list of states with low uninsured motorists!