NEWS BLOG (WSAU) Many years ago I lived in New Hampshire, the other insurance optional state.
It was my first job out of college. I rented a small downtown apartment for $340 a month. All of my worldly possessions fit into those three rooms. I drove a compact Hyundai hatchback that I bought from my father for $500. Money was tight. I didn’t want to pay for car insurance if the state said I didn’t have to have it.
I remember arguing with my father about it. He had two points. First, he was worried about my financial future. If I ever caused a serious car crash, how would I ever get a mortgage or any other type of credit if I had expensive lawsuits hanging over me? Secondly, he said it was socially irresponsible for people to drive around with the potential to cause tremendous damage and no way of paying for it.
I had one counter-point: If I was, God forbid, to cause an accident, what would the victims sue me for? My CD’s ? My books? I was young and had no net-worth. Insurance was for people who had things to protect. No one wants to be financially wiped out because they caused a car accident. My I didn’t have things that needed protecting.
In the end, I got insurance. New Hampshire was a small state. On weekends I’d drive to Boston. I’d hop in the car to visit family and friends in Connecticut and New York. Those states required insurance. Police there always asked for insurance cards when they pulled over a car with New Hampshire plates. That your home state didn’t require insurance wasn’t an excuse. Connecticut would impound your car until a driver with insurance showed up to legally drive it home. I decided it wasn’t worth the risk.
In Wisconsin, the state just decided that for you.
Operations Manager-Midwest Communications, Wausau