Drivers in Mississippi are required to carry liability insurance to cover accidents that are their fault. It’s the law.
Unfortunately, enforcing the law is difficult, if not impossible, and large numbers of drivers wander around the state each day with no insurance. The odds are pretty chancy if you have an accident and expect the other driver’s insurance company to pick up the tab.
To compensate for that most of us who buy insurance also pay for uninsured motorist coverage because we want to be able to recover the cost should our vehicle be damaged in an accident.
Basically, we are buying extra insurance because we know the Mississippi law is not enforced.
The state Senate has passed a bill that attempts to put some teeth into the state insurance requirement. The bill, sponsored by Sen. Billy Hewes, a Gulfport Republican, would require drivers to show their proof-of-insurance card at the tax collector’s office to get or renew a car tag.
The bill faces an uncertain future in the House where a similar bill has failed in the past.
Why would it fail?
Because some insurance companies would rather sell uninsured motorist insurance to those of us who are good citizens than try to insure (and collect the payments) from higher risk drivers.
We think the House should approve the Senate bill.
Drivers still could not be certain that the insurance was in force at the time of an accident, but at least they would know the other driver had insurance on the day the car tag was purchased.
It’s better than what we have now.