Penalties for No Car Insurance in Wisconsin

by Jackie Lohrey

On June 1, 2010, Wisconsin adopted a mandatory motor vehicle insurance law. If you get stopped for a traffic violation, the law enforcement officer will ask not only to see your driver’s license and car registration, but also a valid insurance card. Expect fines and penalties if you don’t have car insurance, or if you have insurance but can’t produce a proof-of-insurance card when an officer asks for it.

Mandatory Coverage Requirements

Wisconsin motor vehicle drivers must carry liability and uninsured motorist coverage.

Although the Wisconsin DMV recommends that you carry more coverage, the minimum liability insurance coverage limits are:

  • Property damage - $10,000
  • Injury or death of one person - $25,000
  • Injury or death of more than one person - $50,000

The minimum uninsured motorist coverage limits are:

  • Injury or death of one person - $25,000
  • Injury or death of more than one person - $50,000

According to the Wisconsin Insurance Commissioner, medical payments and underinsured motorist coverage is optional.

Tip

  • In certain limited situations, a surety bond, personal funds or certificate of self-insurance is an acceptable alternative to a private insurance policy. The Wisconsin Commissioner of Insurance recommends that you contact the Wisconsin Department of Motor Vehicles, Hill Farms State Office Building, 4802 Sheboygan Ave., Madison, WI 53702 to get more information and answer any questions.

Fines and Penalties

Failing to carry the required insurance coverages while operating a motor vehicle, which also includes lapsed insurance, can lead to a fine of up to $500. You also may incur a $10 penalty if you can’t produce valid proof of insurance when asked for it. In addition, providing a “fake” insurance card can result in a fine of up to $5,000.

Tip

  • The penalty for driving without insurance in Wisconsin does not include any demerit points.

About the Author

Based in Green Bay, Wisc., Jackie Lohrey has been writing professionally since 2009. In addition to writing web content and training manuals for small business clients and nonprofit organizations, including ERA Realtors and the Bay Area Humane Society, Lohrey also works as a finance data analyst for a global business outsourcing company.