What is the “No Pay, No Play” law?
The no pay, no play car accident law in Louisiana came into effect in 2011. The law, “La. R.S. 32:866,” says a driver cannot receive the first $15,000 for bodily injury or $25,000 for property damage if they are uninsured during the time of the auto accident. This is because it is illegal in Louisiana to operate any vehicle without car insurance coverage of at least $15,000 per person, $30,000 per accident, and $25,000 for property damage. If a driver fails to obtain at least these minimum amounts of auto coverage, then under the no pay, no play law, they shall not be entitled to recover damages arising out of a car accident, regardless of who was at fault for the accident.
The purpose of the law is to lower the cost of car insurance rates in Louisiana. The thought behind the law is that the restriction on the recovery of damages will encourage more drivers to purchase car insurance coverage. Not all states do this. For example, if you are in a car accident in Florida, these rules do not apply. Having less uninsured drivers on the road reduces the cost to car insurance companies because they spend less covering accidents caused by uninsured drivers. Lawmakers want the savings for the car insurance companies to “trickle-down” to consumers. Currently, Louisiana has the second-highest insurance premium rates in the country.
How does the no pay, no play car accident law in Louisiana affect uninsured drivers?
The no pay, no play car accident law in Louisiana states that you can NOT claim money from car insurance companies if you’re uninsured, even if you’re not the at-fault driver in the car accident.
Even if the other driver is negligent, you can not pursue a claim from a car insurance company if you are not insured in a Louisiana car accident. Under Louisiana law, uninsured and underinsured drivers are liable for the first $15,000 of bodily injury and first $25,000 of property damage, even when the other driver is at fault. Meaning underinsured and uninsured drivers have to pay most or all of their accident expenses out of pocket under Louisiana’s version of the no pay, no play law, making it the strictest in the nation.
Does the no pay, no play law apply if I am late on paying my car insurance premium?
Louisiana’s No Pay, No Play law would also affect a driver who is late on their payments to their auto insurer.
In the state of Louisiana, if you are late paying your car insurance premium and you are involved in an accident, your insurance company may have the right to claim that you were not covered under the policy at the time of the accident, making you an uninsured driver. Residents of Louisiana can protect their right to car accident compensation by keeping car insurance policies up to date and in line with state-required minimums.
What are the exceptions to the no pay, no play law in Louisiana?
The No Pay, No Play statute can be complex in some situations. Here are a few things to know about this car accident law in Louisiana:
- The law does not apply to out-of-state drivers involved in a Louisiana car accident.
- The law requires that LA drivers carry at least minimum liability coverage. They do not need to have full or comprehensive insurance coverage.
- The law does not apply if the at-fault driver broke specific laws during the wreck, such as fleeing the scene, driving while intoxicated, in the commission of a felony, or if the driver intentionally causes the accident.
- The law does not apply to a passenger in an uninsured car unless the passenger owns the car.
- The law is not valid on any vehicle which is legally parked at the time of the car accident.
What car insurance do you need in Louisiana?
Louisiana requires all drivers to retain liability insurance coverage to pay for medical expenses and property damage from an auto accident. Under Louisiana law, drivers should carry the following amounts of minimum coverage:
- $25,000 for property damage
- $15,000 for bodily injury to one person
- $30,000 for injuries to two or more people in one accident
Louisiana also requires drivers to have uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, unless it is expressly declined in writing. This type of coverage in your own insurance policy provides compensation after an auto accident if the at-fault driver has no insurance or doesn’t have enough coverage to pay for your damages.
What happens if I don’t have car insurance in Louisiana?
The law in Louisiana says that all registered owners of a vehicle must carry liability insurance. You may receive fines of $500 – $1,000 for knowingly operating an automobile without car insurance, committing fraud by falsely claiming to have insurance, and being an uninsured driver in a car accident. There are also penalties for no proof of insurance or for letting your insurance lapse by not paying the premium. Drivers without insurance may also have their privileges to drive suspended, having their vehicle impounded, their registrations revoked or their license plates canceled. If you are caught falsely claiming to have insurance you may have your license revoked for up to eighteen months. Also, if you are an uninsured driver in an accident you may have your registrations revoked or driver’s license suspended for up to 180 days.
Do any other states have laws similar to Louisiana’s “No Pay, No Play” law?
Other than Louisiana, there are 10 states that have statutes similar to the “No Pay, No Play” law. In each of the other 10 states, the law only applies to non-economic damages including pain and suffering. Louisiana has the strictest version of the law in the nation, as they are the only state where the law includes economic damages for vehicle repairs and healthcare bills.
Other Car Accident Laws in Louisiana
Being injured in a car accident can be a financial burden, and you want to file a claim to obtain compensation. There are a few car accident laws in Louisiana you should understand to make the process go smoothly. Visit the links below to read more about insurance and car accident laws in Louisiana:
- The Official No Pay, No Play Law (LA R.S. 32:866)
- Louisiana’s Insurance Laws for Auto Accidents
- Insurance Frequently Asked Questions
- Steps To Take After A Car Crash
A lawyer’s job is to lead you throughout the complicated legal process. Having a prominent attorney can mean the difference between a settlement that hardly satisfies your medical costs and one that immensely helps you recover from an accident. A lawyer also deals directly with the insurance companies on your behalf so that you can return to your life after an accident and begin recovery. If you need help understanding Louisiana’s laws surrounding car accidents, do not hesitate to contact us now. Our legal team at Cueria Law Firm are happy to speak with you and answer any questions you may have for no charge.