State to fine motorists for insurance lapses - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

State to fine motorists for insurance lapses

March 18, 2004

Albany -- On March 31st, the state Department of Motor Vehicle Safety will send out the first fine and penalty notices for lapsed insurance. Since January, if your car insurance went unpaid for one day, the state is going to fine you $25.00.

Drivers are going to have to make sure their insurance bills are paid on time, or it will cost you. The Georgia Electronic Information Compliance System data base will now check all registered drivers insurance.

If your insurance payment is one day late, the state will send you a letter, fining you $25.00. If you don't pay that bill within 30 days, the DMVS will suspend your vehicle registration, and make you pay $60.00 to have it reinstated.

State Farm Insurance Agent Ellen Bryant says it's a good thing for insured drivers. "It absolutely is. So many people for so long have complained about they carry insurance and have had to pay it for so many years. And look at all these people who have accidents and don't have insurance. Well, this is it."

A second lapse in your insurance in a five year period will have your registration suspended 90 days, and you will be fined $25.00 and the $60.00 restoration fee.

A third insurance lapse in five years and it will cost you $185 to get your registration back. Bryant said "They really need to watch the expiration dates. They need to watch the due dates. Any 24 hour period with time out of force is going to cost them."

If your car insurance lapsed for one day since January, the state plans to send you a fine letter March 31st. They estimate 75 thousand fine letters to go out that first day.

They expect to also send out 250,000 fine letters to motorists who don't have any car insurance.

Georgia motorists who are caught driving a car with a suspended registration will have their cars impounded, and face additional fines.

posted at 2:36 PM by jimw@walb.com