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How many auto owners are uninsured?

Auto owners are required by law to have insurance on their vehicles. However, some drivers in Washington still choose to go without insurance, not wanting to pay the premiums. How many people make this choice?

While it is naturally difficult to find an exact number, as uninsured drivers do not declare their intent to go without coverage, the Insurance Research Council (IRC) has worked to find an approximate figure. According to them, about 14 percent of the drivers on the road do not carry insurance.

The number do tend to change over time, and they were decreasing for a while, between 2004 and 2008. However, 2008 saw a jump up over 14 percent, though just to 14.3 percent. In 2009, things began trending down again, as the amount fell to 13.8 percent. Still, despite these changes, the average of these figures can give you a ballpark idea of how many people are uninsured every year.

Part of the reason that things were so bad in 2008 and 2009 is that the economy crashed in those years, during the housing crisis. It had been stronger in the years prior, which is why the numbers were falling. When the economy got worse, people lost their jobs and had far less money to spend. They needed to reduce costs, and some chose to do that by dropping their insurance coverage, even though they knew they were supposed to have it. As the economy continues gaining strength, it stands to reason that the percentages could drop once again.

Have you been in an accident with an uninsured driver? This can be complicated, so make sure you know how to get the compensation you deserve.

Source: Autoinsurance.org, "How many drivers don’t have auto insurance?," accessed April. 17, 2015

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