What is the penalty for driving without insurance in Oregon?

Driving without car insurance in OR is a class B traffic violation. Penalties include up to $1,000 in fines, license suspension, and three years of SR-22 insurance.

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Zaneta Wood, Ed.S. has over 15 years of experience in research and technical writing bringing a keen understanding of data analysis and information synthesis to reach a wide variety of audiences. She studied adult education and instructional technology at Appalachian State University as well as technical and professional communication at East Carolina University. Zaneta has prepared technical p...

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Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder & CFP®

UPDATED: Jan 21, 2021

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Here's what you need to know...

  • In Oregon, vehicle owners are required to purchase auto insurance and maintain at least a minimal amount of coverage
  • Every vehicle must be covered by a motor vehicle liability insurance policy that includes Personal Injury Protection
  • According to statistics reported by the Insurance Information Institute, about 9% of cars in Oregon are uninsured
  • You are required to carry proof of liability insurance will you at all times and your insurer will give you a card
  • A fine of between $130 and $1000 will be assessed when you’re cited for driving without insurance for the first time

When you’re driving on Oregon roads, you’ll be exposed to some of the most beautiful sights that can be seen in the America.

While the snow-capped mountains, redwoods, and canyons can all amaze the eye for the first time, maneuvering through the windy roads does have its risks in every season.

To be sure that the billions of dollars of damage caused by accidents can be paid for, state officials in Oregon have passed mandatory insurance laws.

If you live anywhere in the state of Oregon, from the culturally diverse Portland all the way to small college town Eugene, you’re required to maintain auto insurance on every vehicle that you own.

If you don’t even buy insurance, or you let your coverage lapse, you’ll be penalized by the state. Use our FREE comparison tool to find insurance rates now!

The key is to pay your premiums on-time all the time to avoid a lapse. If you don’t, here are the penalties you’ll face:

Penalties For Driving Without Car Insurance

Every state has a different list of penalties that can be assessed for different types of violations. In some states, choosing to drive uninsured is actually considered to be a misdemeanor, but in Oregon, it is classified as a Class B traffic violation.

Since it’s not a misdemeanor crime to break the mandatory insurance law, penalties in Oregon are more lenient than the penalties that you’d be assessed in other states.

You’re not only at risk of being penalized if you’re pulled over by a state trooper or local officer.

Since Oregon enacted Senate Bill 955, also known as the Automobile Liability Insurance Reporting Program, the state DMV can access auto insurance records to see if there is insurance information on a specific car.

Insurers in Oregon must report when your car insurance has been canceled or when it doesn’t renew. If there’s not new covered activated, you’ll be asked to provide proof of insurance to demonstrate that you have coverage.

If you can’t do this, your license plates will be suspended and you’ll pay a reinstatement fee. The penalties for getting caught driving without insurance are as follows:

First Offense

  • A fine between $130 and $1000 for the Class B traffic violation
  • Proof of financial responsibility filed through the state for a minimum period of 3 years

Second Offense

  • A minimum fine of $427 for subsequent offenses
  • Suspension of your driver’s license for 1 year

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What proof of insurance is accepted in Oregon?

The Automobile Liability Insurance Reporting Program has not changed the way that officers verify if a car is insured. All drivers are still required by law to carry proof of insurance.

If you have insurance and you don’t have it with you, you can still be cited and fined for violating that part of the code.

You can show that you have insurance in one of two ways. You can either present the officer with a valid physical auto insurance ID card or, as of May 2013, you can present digital proof via your electronic device like a phone or a tablet.

How to Get Car Insurance in Oregon

The only way to comply with the vehicle code in Oregon is to buy auto insurance from an insurer that’s licensed to sell insurance in the state.

While experts don’t recommend buying state minimums, as long as you buy state minimums you won’t have to worry about being assessed the penalties above.

Every state has a different auto insurance law and different coverage requirements. While many of the requirements are similar, Oregon is unique because it has a modified no-fault system.

That means you have to carry liability coverage and also no-fault coverage. The minimum limits required are:

  • $25,000 for bodily injury to one person in any auto accident
  • $50,000 for bodily injury of two or more persons in any one accident
  • $20,000 for all property damage in one accident
  • $25,000/$50,000 for Uninsured Motorist Protection

There are only about 1.4 million registered cars in Oregon. Compared to other states in the US with less square mileage, that number is fairly low. Out of these 1.4 million cars, around 9 percent are uninsured.

You don’t want to fall into that group of vehicles or you’ll face fines.

To get insurance, quickly log into a quote comparison tool and start getting instant quotes in Oregon. Use our FREE quote tool right now!

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