On behalf of Robinette Legal Group, PLLC

West Virginia motorists are required by state law to carry minimum insurance coverage in case of a car accident. But in a down economy, more West Virginia drivers are running the risk to drive without insurance because they have to pay mortgages, rent, gas, groceries and other necessities. In some cases, simply forgetting to renew your car insurance policy may put you in a tough situation if you have a car accident after the policy lapses.

Here is what you should know about West Virginia insurance laws:

  • You need proof of insurance to register your vehicle;
  • Proof of insurance must be in your vehicle at all times;
  • If you have an accident without insurance, you could face large fines, registration and license suspension (plus fees to reinstate them), or even jail time;
  • To cancel your insurance, you must submit both a Form WC-4C (Owner’s Notice of Insurance Cancellation) and your license plate to the DMV;
  • The WV DMV may require verification of your insurance at any time;
  • If you only use the vehicle (like a camper, motorcycle, or classic car) during certain times in the year, it must be insured when it is in use. While it’s not in use and you want to drop the insurance on it, you need to have a Form WV-4B (Seasonal Statement of Insurance) on file with the DMV.

What Should You Do If You Have No Automobile Insurance Or Insufficient Coverage?

If you have had a motor vehicle accident that involves personal injury or property damage, and you are not covered by car insurance, you should contact an experienced attorney for help. A personal injury attorney is used tonegotiating with insurance companiesand can argue the merits of your case: perhaps the damage and injuries were minimal or your income and assets may be small enough that you cannot cover the expense.

If you find yourself in this situation, immediately contact a West Virginia attorney with experience inuninsured and underinsured motoristcases to defend your rights.