Driving Without Insurance Can Cause Your Driver’s License To Be Suspended

Driving Without Insurance

Driving without insurance can cause your driver’s license to be suspended if you get into an accident and don’t pay for the damages that you caused.

This applies even if you were driving someone else’s car and didn’t know the car was not insured.

What To Do If You Get Into An Accident While Driving Without Insurance

Here’s what to do if you get into an accident in Missouri while driving a car that is not insured:

  • Move your car to the side of the road to avoid being hit by oncoming cars
  • Call an ambulance if you think anyone has been injured
  • Call the police to report the accident
  • Turn on your car’s hazard lights, or use flares or a flashlight to warn oncoming traffic
  • Exchange information with the other driver, including your name, address, and vehicle identification
  • Don’t leave the scene of the accident until a police officer gives permission, or else you risk getting a ticket for “Leaving The Scene Of An Accident
  • File a Missouri Motor Vehicle Accident Report
  • Contact the victim’s insurance company to make arrangements to pay for the damages that you caused

The Missouri Department of Revenue website has more detailed information about what to do if you are involved in an accident.

How Long Will Your Driver’s License Be Suspended If You Don’t Pay For Damage To The Car That You Hit?

If you don’t pay for the property damage that you caused when you got into an accident, the state of Missouri will suspend your driver’s license. This is not a temporary suspension. Your license will remain suspended until you pay for the damages.

You can pay for the damages in one lump sum, or you can sign a settlement agreement with the victim’s insurance company and pay off the total amount in monthly installment payments.

Some people choose to deal with the victim personally, without involving the insurance company. Click here to see the Installment Agreement form provided on the Missouri Department of Revenue (Driver License Bureau) website.

How To Get Your Driver’s License Reinstated If It Is Suspended After An Accident

To get your license reinstated after a suspension caused by your failure to pay for damages resulting from an accident, you must do the following:

  • Provide the state of Missouri with Form SR-22 to prove that you purchased liability insurance (You will get the Form SR-22 from your insurance agent after you purchase the insurance policy.)
  • Pay a reinstatement fee to the Missouri Department of Revenue
  • Provide proof that you paid for the damages to the vehicle that you hit (Proof of payment can be a receipt signed by the victim, or a copy of the installment agreement between you and the victim’s insurance company)

For more information, go to the Missouri Department of Revenue website to find out how to get your license reinstated after a suspension caused by failure to pay for damages. Scroll down and you will see the information listed next to “Motor Vehicle Accident Judgment – Missouri.” Or you can call the Missouri Department of Revenue at (573) 751-4475.

How Many Points Will Be Added To Your Driving Record For Traffic Tickets Involving A Car Accident?

If you are involved in a car accident and your vehicle is not insured, the police officer could issue any of the following tickets:

  • Failure to Yield – 2 to 3 points
  • Following Too Close – 2 to 3 points
  • Careless & Imprudent Driving – 2 to 4 points
  • Reckless Driving – 2 to 4 points
  • Leaving the Scene of an Accident or “Hit & Run” – 6 to 12 points
  • Speeding – 2 to 3 points
  • Driving Without Insurance, No Insurance, or Failure to Maintain Financial Responsibility – 4 points

The number of points assessed for each ticket depends on whether your case is prosecuted in municipal court or circuit court. In general, if the accident occurs on a highway and a state trooper issues the ticket, your case will be prosecuted in circuit court. If the accident happened on a city street and a city police officer issues the ticket, your case will be prosecuted in municipal court.

If you accumulate 8 points within 18 months, your Missouri driver’s license will be suspended for 30 days, if it’s your first suspension. Your license will be revoked for 1 year if you accumulate 12 points within 12 months.

Click here to see the Missouri Department of Revenue list of traffic tickets and points assessed for all traffic violations.

To find out how many points you currently have on your driving record, call the Missouri Department of Revenue (Driver License Bureau) in Jefferson City at (573) 751-4475.

How Can An Attorney Help If You Get Into A Car Accident While Driving Without Insurance?

You can hire a traffic ticket lawyer to get your car accident ticket reduced to a non-moving violation like “Illegal Parking” or “Littering” so points won’t be added to your driving record.

If you have an experienced traffic law attorney representing you, it is very likely you won’t have to appear in court.

Your attorney can also help you obtain a copy of the accident report. The accident report will give you the name of the victim and their insurance company. You will have to contact the victim’s insurance company to make arrangements to pay for the damages that you caused.

What If You Don’t Pay For The Damages You Caused In A Car Accident?

As discussed previously in this post, if you get into an accident and you (or your insurance company) fails to pay for the property damage you caused, the state of Missouri will suspend your driver’s license until you pay.

If you don’t contact the victim’s insurance company to pay for the damages you caused, eventually they will contact you. However, it may take a while, which will delay the resolution of your case. That’s why many drivers prefer to contact the victim’s insurance company immediately following the accident.

“Driving Without Insurance” or “Failure To Maintain Financial Responsibility” Tickets Can Be Reduced To A No-Point Ticket

When you get into an accident and your car is not insured, the police officer will issue a 4-point “No Insurance” ticket. The wording on the ticket will be either “Driving Without Insurance,” “No Proof of Insurance,” or “Failure To Maintain Financial Responsibility.”

An attorney can get your 4-point “No Insurance” ticket reduced to a non-moving, no-point infraction such as “Illegal Parking” or “Littering” that won’t cause points to be added to your driving record. To obtain this result, you will have to provide your attorney with proof that you purchased car insurance.

What To Do If You Get A Ticket For “Driving Without Insurance” And You Don’t Own A Car?

If you receive a “No Insurance” ticket but you don’t currently own a car, you will have to buy “Non-Owner’s” or “Non-Driver’s” insurance before your attorney can get your “No Insurance” ticket reduced. You can call any car insurance company to get a price quote for this type of insurance.

What Happens If You Leave The Scene Of An Accident?

It is very common for someone driving without insurance to leave the scene of an accident because they panic or fear the consequences if they stay around.

After leaving the scene of an accident, the police will usually track you down fairly quickly at your home. If you refuse to come to the door to speak to them, they can tow your vehicle if they positively identify it as having been involved in the accident.

Or the officer may call and ask you to come to the police station to write out a statement about what happened. In most cases, after you make your statement, the police officer will issue a ticket for “Leaving the Scene of an Accident” (also called “Hit & Run”).

If police haven’t contacted you yet, you can call the police station in the city or county where the accident occurred and tell them what happened. After you make your written statement and receive the ticket, the victim’s insurance company will eventually contact you to negotiate a settlement agreement to pay for the damages that you caused.

Points and Penalties For Pleading Guilty To “Leaving The Scene Of An Accident” In Missouri

If you get a ticket for “Leaving the Scene of an Accident” or “Hit & Run” and you plead guilty as charged, 6 to 12 points will be added to your driving record. The number of points varies depending on whether your case is prosecuted in municipal court or state circuit court.

A conviction for “Leaving the Scene of an Accident” will stay on your driving record forever if it was a state violation (it occurred on a state highway and was prosecuted in circuit court).

If you accumulate 12 points within 12 months, the state of Missouri will revoke your license for 1 year.

The maximum penalty for a misdemeanor “Leaving the Scene of an Accident” ticket is 1 year in jail and a $1,000 fine.

How To Get A Ticket For “Leaving the Scene of an Accident” or “Hit & Run” Reduced To A Non-Moving Violation

An experienced traffic law attorney can get your ticket for “Leaving the Scene of an Accident” reduced to a no-point ticket, such as “Illegal Parking” or “Littering.”

The outcome of your case will depend on the following:

  • How bad is your driving record?
  • What is the amount of property damage?
  • Were personal injuries involved?
  • Which court is your case being prosecuted in?

Your attorney can evaluate your case and give you a price quote for legal representation. They can also give you an estimate of the fine and court costs that you will have to pay.

If you are required to attend traffic school or do community service, your attorney will tell you how to register for the class, and give you suggestions for where to do the community service.

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For a free consultation about your Missouri traffic ticket, call St. Louis traffic law attorney Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 or email her at [email protected]

No Insurance Ticket Adds 4 Points To Driving Record

No Insurance Ticket

Potential penalties for a “No Insurance” ticket in Missouri include:  driver’s license suspension, 4 points added to your driving record, 15 days in jail and/or a $500 fine.

Driving Without Insurance Is Illegal In Missouri

Driving without insurance is illegal and is considered a class D misdemeanor (if it’s your first offense) in Missouri.

The criminal offense of driving an uninsured vehicle may be described on your ticket in the following ways:

  • Failure to Maintain Financial Responsibility
  • Failure to Maintain Insurance
  • No Proof of Insurance
  • No Insurance

The Missouri statute regarding driving without insurance is called the “Duty To Maintain Financial Responsibility” law, RSMO 303.025.

Penalties For “No Insurance” Ticket In Missouri

Here are the potential penalties for a FIRST-TIME offense of “Failure to Maintain Financial Responsibility” or “No Insurance”:

  • 4 points added to your driving record
  • Suspension of your driver’s license

Potential penalties for a SECOND offense of driving without insurance include the following:

  • 4 points added to your driving record
  • 15 days in jail and/or a fine of up to $500
  • Suspension of your driver’s license
  • Order of Supervision instead of points

How Many Points Can You Accumulate Before Your License Is Suspended?

Missouri will suspend your driver’s license for 30 days if you accumulate 8 points within 18 months (if it’s your first offense).

Your license will be revoked for 1 year if you accumulate 12 points within 12 months, 18 points within 24 months, or 24 points within 36 months.

A “No Insurance” ticket is a 4-point ticket, while most standard speeding tickets are either 2-point or 3-point violations.

How Long Will Your Driver’s License Be Suspended For Failure To Maintain Insurance?

Your license can be suspended when you plead guilty to a “No Insurance” ticket:

  • 1st Suspension – 0 days
  • 2nd Suspension – 90 days
  • 3rd Suspension – 1 year

If you plead guilty to a “No Insurance” ticket involving an accident and you failed to pay for the damages to the other vehicle, your license will be suspended for 1 year.

What Happens If You Get Into An Accident And Your Car Is Not Insured

If you are involved in an accident and your vehicle is not insured, your license can be suspended (see above), and you will have to pay for the damages for which you are liable.

Contact the attorney for the insurance company representing the other driver to negotiate a payment plan or lump sum amount to pay for the damages. You may have to make several payments before the insurance company’s attorney will request that the Missouri Department of Revenue (DOR) lift your suspension.

Failure to pay for the damages resulting from the accident will cause your license to be suspended for 1 year. You will not be able to reinstate your driver’s license until you provide proof to the DOR that you paid for the damages.

After a license suspension for failure to maintain insurance when an accident is involved, you can apply for reinstatement of your license. You will have to file an SR-22 form proving that you have liability insurance for your vehicle, and you will have to maintain that insurance for 3 years from your reinstatement eligibility date.

How Long Does A “No Insurance” Ticket Stay On Your Driving Record?

If you plead guilty to a “No Insurance” ticket, 4 points will be added to your driving record and the conviction will remain on your driving record forever.

Unlike most traffic violations which are removed from your driving record after a certain number of years, a conviction for “Failure to Maintain Financial Responsibility,” “No Insurance,” or “No Proof of Insurance” will never be eligible for removal from your driving record.

Why Did You Get A “No Insurance” Ticket If Your Car Was Insured?

It is very common to get a “No Insurance” ticket, even if your car was insured, if you had an expired insurance card in your possession at the time you were pulled over by police.

Many people now keep proof of insurance on their iPhone, but not all police officers will accept that as valid proof of insurance.

Do You Need An Attorney To Get Your “No Insurance” Ticket Dismissed?

If you received a “No Insurance” ticket but your vehicle was insured at the time of the traffic stop, you can call the court clerk and ask if you can bring proof of insurance to court and ask the judge to dismiss your ticket. (Some courts will allow you to bring proof to the court clerk’s office without requiring you to appear in court.)

Keep in mind that some courts will not allow you to request a dismissal of your “No Insurance” ticket without having an attorney representing you.

You can call the court clerk prior to your court date to ask about the court’s policy regarding “No Insurance” tickets. You can also read my previous blog post discussing how some courts in St. Louis handle “No Insurance” tickets.

How To Get A “No Insurance” Ticket Reduced To A No-Point Violation

You will need to hire an experienced traffic law attorney if you want to get your “No Insurance” ticket reduced from a 4-point violation to a no-point infraction, such as “Illegal Parking.”

You won’t have to appear in court if you hire an attorney to represent you, and you will be given at least 30 days to pay any fines or court costs that you may owe. The amount of the fine will depend on whether your vehicle was insured at the time of the traffic stop or you purchased insurance afterward.

What To Do About A “No Insurance” Ticket If You Don’t Own A Car

If you received a “No Insurance” ticket while driving a vehicle that you borrowed from a friend, contact your friend to ask if they can provide you with proof of insurance. If that doesn’t work, you can purchase “Non-Owner’s Insurance” or “Non-Driver’s Insurance” and provide that to your attorney who is representing you in court.

If you no longer own the vehicle you were driving at the time you received the “No Insurance” ticket, you will have to provide proof of insurance for the vehicle you currently own.

The judge will not dismiss a “No Insurance” ticket just because you provided proof that you purchased insurance after the fact, but your attorney can get the 4-point “No Insurance” ticket reduced to a no-point infraction that won’t affect your driving record.

 

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If you received a Missouri “No Insurance” ticket and you want to get it reduced to a no-point infraction, contact St. Louis traffic law attorney Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 or [email protected] for a free consultation about your ticket.

What is SR-22 Insurance?

SR-22 insurance is not insurance. SR-22 is the name of the form that you have to file with the Missouri Driver’s License Bureau to prove that your vehicle is covered by liability insurance.

Where to Get an SR-22 Form

You must obtain the SR-22 form from your insurance agent after you purchase liability insurance. Your insurance agent can file the form with the Missouri Driver’s License Bureau for you.

When is an SR-22 Required?

You must file an SR-22 form with the Missouri Driver’s License Bureau before you can get your license reinstated in the following situations in which your license was suspended or revoked:

    • DUI
    • Administrative alcohol suspension (if not a first-time offense)
    • Failure to submit to alcohol or drug test (for example: you refused to blow into breathalyzer)
    • Accident while driving uninsured vehicle resulting in court judgment against you
    • Accumulation of too many points on your driving record for non-alcohol-related moving violations

In addition, you must file an SR-22 before applying for a hardship license (Limited Driving Privilege).

How Long Do You Continue Filing an SR-22?

Missouri requires that you file an SR-22 with the Driver’s License Bureau for 2 years following a license suspension resulting from any of the violations listed above.

If your license was suspended under the Mandatory Insurance Law for failing to show proof of insurance or for using a fake insurance card, you must provide proof of liability insurance to the Driver’s License Bureau for 3 years starting on the date you were eligible to get your license reinstated. In these situations, you can provide proof of insurance to the Driver’s License Bureau using the SR-22 form, or by providing a copy of your current insurance card.

Click here for more information about license reinstatement requirements on the Missouri Driver’s License Bureau website.


To get your “No Insurance” traffic ticket dismissed or amended to a no-point violation, call St. Louis traffic law attorney Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 or email her at [email protected]

 

Penalties & Fines For “No Insurance” Ticket in Missouri

When you borrow a friend’s car, make sure you have proof that the car is insured, in case you are pulled over by a police officer for a traffic violation. Even though the car may be insured, if you can’t find the insurance card at the time of the traffic stop, you may receive a ticket for “No Insurance,” “No Proof of Insurance,” “Failure to Maintain Financial Responsibility,” or “Failure to Provide Proof of Insurance.”

$300 Fine, 15 Days in Jail, and 4 Points on Your Driving Record for Missouri “No Insurance” Ticket  

It is illegal to drive a vehicle in Missouri that is not insured, and a judge can fine you up to $300, put you in jail for 15 days, suspend your license, or enter an order of supervision against you for each violation.

4 points will also be added to your driving record if you are convicted of driving without insurance. If you accumulate 8 points within 18 months, your driver’s license will be suspended for 30 days (if it’s your first suspension), and if you accumulate 12 points within 12 months, your license will be revoked for 1 year. See my previous blog post about Missouri traffic ticket fines, points, and penalties.

In addition, “No Insurance” traffic tickets stay on your Missouri driving record forever and will never be eligible for removal.

Proof That You Have Insurance On Your Own Vehicle Won’t Help

You may have insurance on your own personal vehicle, but that won’t matter if you are caught driving a friend’s car that is not insured. A police officer can issue a ticket for “Failure to Provide Proof of Insurance” or “No Insurance” to both the driver and the owner of the vehicle, if the driver was not the owner.

“No Insurance” Tickets Will Be Dismissed or Reduced to a Lesser Charge if You Provide Proof of Insurance to the Court

The good news is most courts will dismiss “No Insurance” traffic tickets if you provide proof that the car you were driving was insured at the time you were pulled over.

It’s possible that you you can avoid a court appearance by bringing proof of insurance to the court clerk prior to the court date and paying the court costs, which can range anywhere from $25 to $75, depending on the court. Some courts require you to come to court and show proof of insurance to the judge before the court will dismiss the ticket. Other courts refuse to dismiss or reduce a “No Insurance” ticket unless the defendant hires an attorney to negotiate with the prosecuting attorney for an out-of-court disposition of the case.

Some Courts Reduce “No Insurance” Tickets If You Purchase Insurance After the Traffic Stop

If your car was not insured at the time you received the traffic ticket for “No Proof of Insurance,” some courts will reduce the ticket to a lesser charge if you provide proof that you purchased insurance after the traffic stop. Call the court clerk to find out their policies and procedures regarding dismissal of “No Insurance” tickets.

An Attorney Can Negotiate a Plea Bargain to Get Your “No Insurance” Ticket Reduced to a Lesser Charge

If you hire an attorney to negotiate a plea bargain with the court to get your “No Insurance” ticket reduced to a lesser offense, you won’t have to appear in court. Most likely, the judge will either dismiss the ticket or reduce the charge to a non-moving, no-point infraction such as “Illegal Parking.” You will have to provide proof of insurance and pay a fine and court costs, but no points will be added to your driving record.

How Much is the Fine For a “No Insurance” Ticket in St. Louis?

Each court establishes its own rules regarding how it handle tickets for driving without insurance. Here are some examples of the fines and procedures in some St. Louis area courts for “No Insurance” or “No Proof of Insurance” traffic tickets:

In Ladue Municipal Court, if you receive a traffic ticket for failing to provide proof of insurance at the time of the traffic stop, you can bring a copy of your insurance card to the court clerk prior to the court date and the court clerk will dismiss the “No Proof of Insurance” ticket, and all you will have to pay is $26.50 in court costs. If you receive a “No Proof of Insurance” ticket but are unable to provide proof that your car was insured at the time of the traffic stop, an attorney can negotiate a plea bargain with the prosecutor to have the “No Proof of Insurance” ticket reduced to “Illegal Parking” with a fine of $150.50 plus $26.50 in court costs.

In Edmundson Municipal Court in St. Louis County, if you receive a ticket for “No Insurance” but you purchase insurance afterward and bring proof to the court clerk, the ticket will be dismissed, no points will be added to your driving record, and your total fine and court costs will be $225. If you had insurance when you were pulled over but couldn’t find your insurance card, then you can bring proof of insurance to the court clerk and your “No Proof of Insurance” ticket will be dismissed upon payment of a $75 fine.

Normandy Municipal Court will dismiss your “No Insurance” ticket upon payment of $26.50 in court costs if you had insurance at the time of the traffic stop but you were unable to provide proof of insurance to the police officer. If you did not have insurance when you were pulled over but you purchased insurance afterward, you will have to go to court and the judge will assess your fine. In some cases, the judge in Normandy Municipal Court has fined drivers as much as $350 for driving without insurance, even if they provided proof that they purchased insurance after the traffic stop.

In Florissant Municipal Court, if you had insurance when you were pulled over but didn’t have your insurance card with you at the time, you can bring proof of insurance to court and show it to the judge. The judge will then dismiss your “No Insurance” ticket and you will only have to pay $24.50 in court costs. If your car was not insured at the time of the traffic stop, Florissant Municipal Court will fine you $127 but the Court will not report it to the Missouri Dept. of Revenue (DOR), so no points will be added to your driving record.

In St. Louis City Municipal Court, if you receive a “No Insurance” ticket, you can bring proof of insurance to court and the judge will probably dismiss the ticket upon payment of $50.50 in court costs. This applies even if you did not have insurance at the time of the traffic stop but you purchased insurance afterward.

See my previous blog post for more information about fines for “No Insurance” tickets in St. Louis courts.

If you have received a “No Insurance” or “No Proof of Insurance” ticket and want to hire an attorney to get your ticket reduced or dismissed, call St. Louis traffic law attorney Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 for a price quote, or email Andrea at [email protected]

Some Drug and Alcohol Convictions Stay on Your Missouri Driving Record Forever

The following drug & alcohol-related convictions stay on your Missouri driving record forever:

    • DUI/DWI (Driving While Intoxicated)
    • DUID (Driving Under the Influence of Drugs)
    • Excessive BAC (Blood Alcohol Content)

Please Note:  It is possible to get a first-time DUI conviction expunged after 10 years of good behavior. (See below for further information regarding expungement of a first-time DUI.)

Types of Convictions That Stay on Your Missouri Driving Record Forever

In a previous blog post about convictions that stay on your driving record forever, I listed the types of convictions that remain permanently on your Missouri driving record. In addition to DUI, DUID, and Excessive BAC, the following convictions stay on your Missouri driving record forever and are not eligible for removal:

    • No Insurance
    • No Driver’s License (state, not municipal)
    • Vehicular Manslaughter
    • Driving While Suspended or Revoked
    • Leaving the Scene of an Accident (state, not municipal)
    • Any Felony

What is Expungement?

Expungement is the removal or deletion of all court records of your arrest, plea, trial or conviction. The only types of alcohol-related convictions that are eligible for expungement in Missouri are first-time DUI or MIP convictions. The option of expungement is not available for felony DUIs or for anyone convicted of driving a commercial motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol.

How to Get a First-Time DUI Conviction Expunged

Missouri law allows anyone who pleaded guilty to, or was convicted of, a first-time misdemeanor DUI to apply to have the court expunge (remove or delete) the DUI charge 10 years after the offense occurred, as long as the individual has had no other alcohol-related driving convictions, “alcohol-related enforcement contacts,” or any pending “alcohol-related enforcement actions” within the 10-year period since the conviction. See Missouri statute RSMo 302.525.3 for an explanation of what is an alcohol-related law enforcement contact.

If a judge finds that you meet these requirements, then the court will enter an order of expungement, and all records of your DUI arrest, plea, trial, or conviction will be deleted.

How to Get an MIP Conviction Expunged

For a first-time MIP conviction to be expunged, you must show that you have had no other alcohol-related convictions or “alcohol-related enforcement contacts” since the original MIP conviction, and that you are applying for expungement at least 1 year after the original conviction date, or after you have reached age 21.

Marijuana and Drug Paraphernalia Convictions Stay on Your Criminal Record Forever and Can Not be Expunged

If a police officer pulls you over for a traffic stop and charges you with possession of drugs (marijuana) or drug paraphernalia (such as a pipe) and you are convicted of those charges, no points will be added to your Missouri driving record for that conviction. However, a conviction for possession of drugs or drug paraphernalia will remain on your criminal record forever.

An Attorney May be Able to Get Your Drug Possession Charges Reduced to a Lesser Offense

When facing a misdemeanor charge of possession of drugs or drug paraphernalia, you can hire an attorney to negotiate a plea bargain with the court to get your drug charges dismissed or reduced to a lesser offense, so they won’t show up on your permanent criminal record. Keep in mind that your chances of success are not as good if you have multiple prior drug-related convictions on your record.

The outcome of your case depends on which court your case is being prosecuted in, your criminal history, and the details of your specific case.

While expungement is an option for some first-time DWI or MIP convictions, drug-related convictions can never be expunged from your Missouri criminal record.

The Court May Order You to Attend “ADEP” or “SATOP” Class

If your attorney is able to get your drug possession charges reduced to a lesser offense, you will have to pay a fine and court costs, and you may also be required to take a court-ordered class, such as “ADEP” (Alcohol and Drug Education Program) or “SATOP” (Substance Abuse Traffic Offender Program).

Depending on the facts of your case, you may be offered an “SIS” (Suspended Imposition of Sentence) and 1 or 2 years of unsupervised probation. With an “SIS,” no conviction is entered on your permanent record if you successfully complete your period of probation without any further convictions.

If You Have Already Pleaded Guilty to Drug Possession Charges, an Attorney May be Able to Withdraw Your Guilty Plea

If you have already pleaded guilty to drug charges, it may be possible for an attorney to withdraw your guilty plea and negotiate a plea bargain with the court to have your drug charges reduced to a lesser offense.

However, if too much time has passed since your guilty plea, or if you were originally represented by an attorney when you pleaded guilty, the court may not allow the withdrawal. For more information, go to the Withdrawal of Guilty Plea page on my website.


If you have been charged with possession of marijuana or drug paraphernalia and would like a price quote for legal representation, contact St. Louis traffic law attorney Andrea Storey Rogers at (314) 724-5059 or email her at [email protected]

[This post was updated on November 11, 2013.]

Some Missouri Courts Dismiss “No Insurance” Traffic Tickets if You Buy Insurance

Most courts in the St. Louis, Missouri area will dismiss a “No Insurance” ticket if you later provide proof that the car you were driving was insured at the time the police officer pulled you over, or that you purchased auto insurance afterward. You may also have to pay court costs, which can range anywhere from $25 to $60, depending on the court. (A ticket for “No Insurance” is the same as a ticket for “Failure to Maintain Financial Responsibility.”)

A “No Insurance” Traffic Ticket Causes 4 Points to be Added to Your Missouri Driving Record and It Remains on Your Driving Record Permanently

If you are unable to get a “No Insurance” traffic ticket dismissed or amended to a lesser charge, then you will have to pay the fine for the ticket and 4 points will be added to your Missouri driving record. If you accumulate 12 points within 12 months, your Missouri driver’s license will be revoked for 1 year. If you accumulate 8 points within 18 months, your driver’s license will be suspended for 30 days, if it’s your first suspension.

In addition, a conviction for “No Insurance” will stay on your Missouri driving record forever and will never be eligible for removal. In this previous blog post, I list other types of tickets that remain permanently on your driving record.

You Can Get a “No Insurance” or “Failure to Maintain Financial Responsibility” Traffic Ticket Dismissed Without Hiring a Lawyer in Most Courts in the St. Louis, Missouri Area

Some courts in the St. Louis, Missouri area will allow you to bring proof of insurance to the court clerk’s office prior to the court date, so you don’t have to appear in court. Other courts require that you go to court on the court date and show proof of insurance to the judge before the court will dismiss a “No Insurance” or “No Proof of Insurance” traffic ticket.

Whether you had insurance when the police officer pulled you over, or if you purchased insurance after the traffic stop, some Missouri courts will not allow you to request a dismissal of a “No Insurance” ticket on your own, without the assistance of an attorney. (Call the court clerk’s office ahead of time to find out.) If that is the case, you will have to hire an attorney to file a pleading and provide proof of insurance on your behalf before the prosecuting attorney will consider negotiating a plea bargain to have your “No Insurance” ticket amended or dismissed.

Procedures for Handling “No Insurance” Tickets in Some Municipal Courts in the St. Louis, Missouri Area   

In St. Louis County Municipal Court (North Division) in Hazelwood, Missouri, if you receive a traffic ticket for “No Insurance” and you did not have insurance at the time of the traffic stop, you can appear in court and ask the judge to allow you to take a driving class to get rid of the “No Insurance” ticket. You will need to buy car insurance prior to the court date so you can show proof of insurance to the judge.

In St. Louis City Municipal Court, if you receive a “No Insurance” traffic ticket and you purchased car insurance after receiving the ticket, then you can appear in court on the court date and show the judge your proof of insurance, and the judge will dismiss the ticket upon payment of court costs of $50.50. If you actually had insurance at the time of the traffic stop but you didn’t have proof of insurance with you, then bring your current insurance card to court on your court date and show it to the judge, and the judge will probably dismiss the “No Insurance” ticket, sometimes without payment of court costs.

In Ballwin Municipal Court in Ballwin, Missouri, the fine for a “No Insurance” traffic ticket is $175. If you had insurance at the time the police officer pulled you over, and there was no accident involved, then you can bring proof of insurance to the court clerk’s office and they will dismiss your “No Insurance” ticket upon payment of court costs. If you did not have insurance at the time you were pulled over but you purchased insurance afterward, then you can hire an attorney to negotiate a plea bargain with the Court to have your “No Insurance” ticket amended or dismissed. You can not bring proof of insurance to court on your own and expect the judge to dismiss your ticket if you did not have insurance at the time of the traffic stop.

In St. Ann Municipal Court in St. Ann, Missouri, the fine for a “No Insurance” ticket is $151. If you did not have insurance when you received the ticket, but afterward you purchased at least 3 months’ worth of car insurance, then you can show proof of insurance to the court and your “No Insurance” ticket will be dismissed with a fine of $101. If you did have insurance and can provide proof that your car was insured on the date the ticket was issued, then the court will dismiss the ticket upon payment of $26.50 in court costs.

In St. Peters Municipal Court in St. Peters, Missouri, if you buy insurance after you receive a “No Insurance” ticket, your attorney can negotiate a plea bargain with the prosecutor to have your ticket amended or dismissed. The total fine and court costs will be approximately $375 and no points will be added to your driving record. If you did not have insurance at the time of the traffic stop and you are unable to purchase insurance now, then you must appear in court on your court date. At that time, the judge will determine the amount of the fine that you owe plus court costs, and 4 points will be added to your Missouri driving record.

In Florissant Municipal Court in Florissant, Missouri, if you receive a traffic ticket for “No Insurance” but you had insurance on the date you received the ticket, you can bring proof of insurance to court and the judge will dismiss the ticket upon payment of court costs of $26.50. If you did not have insurance when the police officer pulled you over, you can purchase insurance afterward and bring proof to the court clerk’s office prior to the court date and pay a $125 fine. If you did not have insurance when you received a “No Insurance” ticket and you are unable to purchase insurance afterward, then you must appear in court on your court date, at which time the judge will assess your fine, but no points will be reported to the Missouri Department of Revenue. Unlike most municipal courts in the St. Louis area, Florissant Municipal Court does not report points to the Missouri Department of Revenue for “No Insurance” traffic tickets.

In University City Municipal Court in University City, Missouri, the court will not allow you to request a dismissal of a “No Insurance” ticket on your own, without the assistance of an attorney.  Therefore, you must hire an attorney to file a pleading and provide proof of insurance on your behalf before the prosecuting attorney will consider dismissing your “No Insurance” ticket.

Your Driver’s License Will be Suspended if You Cause a Car Accident While Driving Without Insurance

If you cause a car accident while driving a vehicle that is not insured, your driver’s license will be suspended. For more information, see this page of the Missouri Department of Revenue’s website regarding the consequences of a conviction for driving without insurance.

The offense of “No Insurance” or “Failure to Maintain Financial Responsibility” is a misdemeanor and is punishable by imprisonment in the county jail for a term not to exceed 15 days and/or a fine not to exceed $300. This link takes you to the Missouri law that prohibits driving without insurance.

An Attorney May be Able to Withdraw Your Guilty Plea for a “No Insurance” Ticket and Cancel the Suspension of Your Driver’s License

If you have already pleaded guilty to a “No Insurance” traffic ticket in Missouri, it is possible to hire an attorney to withdraw your guilty plea and negotiate a plea bargain with the prosecuting attorney to have your ticket dismissed or amended. If the “No Insurance” ticket is dismissed or amended to a no-point infraction, then those 4 points that were added to your driving record for the “No Insurance” ticket will be removed. If your driver’s license was suspended because of too many points, then the removal of those 4 points may be enough to cause the suspension to be cancelled or “lifted.”

You will have to provide your attorney with proof that you have purchased auto insurance, and you must act quickly; most courts will not allow the withdrawal of a guilty plea if too much time has passed since your guilty plea, or if you were represented by an attorney when you pleaded guilty.

For more information regarding Missouri traffic law, see my traffic law resources page for links to information regarding Missouri speeding tickets, points, Missouri driver’s licenses, courts, and other traffic-related issues.

“Driving While Suspended” Traffic Ticket Stays on Missouri Driving Record Permanently

Some traffic tickets stay on your Missouri driving record forever, such as: “Driving While Suspended”, DWI (Driving While Intoxicated), DUID (Driving Under the Influence of Drugs), Excessive BAC (blood alcohol content), “No Insurance,” “No Driver’s License” (state, not municipal),  “Leaving the Scene of an Accident” (state, not municipal), vehicular manslaughter, any felony, and any conviction involving a drug- or alcohol-related driving offense or enforcement contact.

In Missouri, some first-time DWI and MIP convictions are eligible for expungement (removal or deletion) from your permanent record. See my blog post for more information about expungement of these types of convictions.

A “Driving While Suspended” Traffic Ticket Will Never Qualify to be Removed from Your Missouri Driving Record

Once a year, the Missouri Department of Revenue removes certain types of tickets from its database of driving records. A speeding ticket or other traffic violation can be removed from your Missouri driving record if 1) it was issued for a minor offense, 2) it is more than 3 years old, and 3) it did not cause a suspension or revocation of your driver’s license.  Convictions that stay on your driving record permanently (for “Driving While Suspended,” DWI, DUID, etc.) are not eligible for removal.

What Kinds of Traffic Tickets Are Considered “Minor Offenses” and Qualify to be Removed From Your Missouri Driving Record?

The state of Missouri considers the following to be “minor offenses” and are eligible to be deleted from your driving record: speeding tickets, stop sign violations, “Failure to Signal,” “Failure to Yield,” and “Careless & Imprudent Driving.” These types of tickets will be removed from driving records during the Missouri Department of Revenue’s annual purging of old tickets from its driving record files.

Unfortunately, the Missouri Department of Revenue’s annual housecleaning of its files does not catch all traffic tickets that are eligible to be deleted. See my previous blog post titled “Speeding Ticket Points Stay on Your Missouri Driving Record for Only 18 Months” to find out how to determine if you have old speeding tickets or other traffic violations that are eligible to be deleted from your driving record and how to request that those old tickets be removed.

What Should You Do if You Get a “Driving While Suspended” Traffic Ticket in Missouri?

Don’t ignore a “Driving While Suspended” ticket, mistakenly thinking that it’s just another speeding ticket. As noted previously, a conviction for “Driving While Suspended” stays on your Missouri driving record forever, and any insurance agent who reviews your driving record  prior to giving you a price quote for car insurance will be able to see it.

If you want to avoid a conviction for “Driving While Suspended,” you can hire a traffic law attorney to negotiate a plea bargain with the prosecuting attorney to get the ticket amended to a non-moving, no-point violation. Your lawyer will need to show proof to the Court that your driver’s license has been reinstated before the prosecuting attorney can recommend any type of reduction or amendment of the charge.

If you have multiple “Driving While Suspended” convictions on your driving record, you have less of a chance that a court will agree to amend or reduce your current “Driving While Suspended” charge.

12 Points Are Added to Your Missouri Driving Record for a “Driving While Suspended” Conviction and Your Driver’s License Will be Revoked for 1 Year

If you decide to not hire an attorney to negotiate a plea bargain with the Court and, instead, you decide to just pay the fine for the “Driving While Suspended” ticket, then a conviction for “Driving While Suspended” will be added to your driving record. That conviction will cause 12 points to be added to your driving record. In Missouri, if you accumulate 12 points on your driving record within 12 months, your driver’s license will be revoked for 1 year.

How To Get Your Missouri Driver’s License Reinstated

To find out how to get your driver’s license reinstated, call the Missouri Department of Revenue at (573) 526-2407 ext. 1 or go to this page of the Missouri Department of Revenue web site for information about what is required to get your driver’s license reinstated.

The Requirements for License Reinstatement Vary, Depending on the Reason for the Suspension or Revocation

The requirements for getting your license reinstated depend on the reason your license was suspended or revoked in the first place. For example, if your license was suspended because you refused to take a breathalyzer test during a DWI traffic stop, then you will have to complete a SATOP (Substance Abuse Traffic Offenders Program) class before you can get your driver’s license reinstated.

If your license was suspended because of unpaid speeding tickets, you will have to pay the fines for those tickets and obtain compliance letters from each court to show proof of payment before your license will be reinstated. If you have already pleaded guilty to the traffic violations but your guilty plea was fairly recent, it is possible that a lawyer can withdraw your guilty plea and negotiate a plea bargain with the Court to get the traffic ticket amended to a non-moving, no-point infraction. You will still have to pay fines and court costs, and compliance letters will be required before your license will be reinstated.

You may have to provide proof that you have purchased liability insurance coverage for your car before your driver’s license is reinstated. There is a form called SR-22 that must be filed with the Driver License Bureau in Jefferson City, Missouri to prove that you have met this requirement. Your insurance agent can file the form for you after you purchase the insurance.

Regardless of the reason for your driver’s license suspension or revocation, you will also have to pay a small fee (either $20 or $45), in addition to any fines or court costs that you owe, in order to get your driver’s license reinstated. The amount of the reinstatement fee varies depending on the reason for the suspension or revocation.

For more information about Missouri traffic law, go to my Traffic Law Resources page for links to information regarding Missouri speeding tickets, points, courts, Missouri driver’s licenses, and other traffic-related issues.