Utah Criminal Defense Lawyer in Salt Lake City
Real Experience - Real Results

What is the penalty for driving without insurance in Utah?

Utah law requires any person operating a motor vehicle on Utah roads to have insurance. Although driving without insurance is considered a "traffic violation" in Utah, it does require a mandatory court appearance and penalties can include jail time and more than $1,000 in fines and surcharge. You may also be required to carry SR22 insurance if you have been convicted of driving without insurance in Utah. Because the consequences of a conviction for driving without insurance can be serious, it is important to consult with an experienced Utah criminal defense lawyer regarding your options.

Driving without insurance in Utah is a class B misdemeanor punishable by a maximum penalty of up to 180 days in jail and a $1,000 plus a 90% surcharge. The maximum penalty is seldom imposed. For a first offense, a judge is more likely to follow the Utah uniform bail schedule, and impose a relatively low fine. For a second offense, the bail schedule recommends a higher fine. But the judge may impose a higher amount if the court determines that the circumstances justify harsher punishment.

Although driving without insurance is sometimes considered a "traffic violation," it is also a criminal charge that brings with it all of the protections guaranteed by our Federal and State constitutions. You are entitled to a presumption of innocence and a trial by jury if you are charged with driving without insurance.

Just because you are charged with driving without insurance does not mean you are guilty. Some cases are filed simply because a driver did not have an insurance card in the vehicle. If you are charged but actually had insurance in effect at the time, you are not guilty.  

If you actually had insurance, but didn't have proof of insurance with you, police or prosecutors may try to charge you with "no proof of insurance." The fines and penalties in Utah for having no proof of insurance are essentially the same as those for driving without insurance. However, there is a statutory defense to driving without proof of insurance if you actually had insurance at the time. The burden of proof will be on you to demonstrate that you actually had insurance at the time. But this can usually be accomplished with a letter from your insurance company stating that your insurance policy was in effect and current at the time.

Finding a Utah Criminal Defense Lawyer in Salt Lake City

If you are charged with a crime in Utah, you should speak with an experienced Utah criminal defense attorney. Stephen Howard has defended literally thousands of serious felony and misdemeanor charges, ranging from the most serious aggravated charges to DUI and virtually everything in between. His track record includes not guilty verdicts or dismissals for charges including aggravated robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, fraud, drug distribution, DUI, and many more.

Based in Salt Lake City, criminal defense lawyer Stephen Howard offers legal services to clients throughout Utah. Contact us now to schedule an initial consultation for your case.

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  • Selected Defense Victories
  • Drug Crimes Defense Attorney Utah Dismissed - Client charged with first-degree felony drug distribution and faced the potential of life in prison. Negotiations with prosecutor resulted in misdemeanor plea-in-abeyance agreement and ultimately a complete dismissal of the case.
  • Utah Burglary Attorney Not Guilty - Client charged with second-degree felony home burglary. Defense investigation of the case revealed witnesses, missed by police and prosecutors, who supported client's claim of innocence. Jury found client "not guilty" at trial.
  • Felony Attorney Utah Dismissed - Client charged with first-degree felony child kidnapping. Full defense analysis of case revealed legal flaws in prosecutor's case that convinced deputy district attorney to dismiss the case outright without further conditions.
  • Violent Crimes Assalt Defense UtahProbation - Client charged with aggravated robbery, and confessed to police before hiring a defense attorney. Defense mitigation efforts resulted in a negotiated resolution that removed "life" in prison as a possibility, and secured a probation sentence from the court.
  • Criminal Defense Trial AttorneyNot Guilty - Client charged with aggravated assault for alleged attack with dangerous weapon. Despite the testimony of numerous prosecution witnesses, thorough defense investigation and trial preparation resulted in acquittal.
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