What is Proposition 213 and How is it Affecting California Drivers?

Proposition 213 in California

What is Proposition 213?

Proposition 213, officially called The Personal Responsibility Act of 1996, is a California state law that was passed in 1996. Prop 213 was created to limit the right for uninsured motorists to collect non-economic damages from a car accident, regardless of whose fault it was. Prop 213 was supported by Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), the California Police Chiefs Association, California Association of Highway Patrolman, Doris Tate Crime Victims Bureau, California Peace Officers’ Association, Peace Officers Research Association of California, and the Association for California Tort Reform among others.

Who is affected by Proposition 213?

Proposition 213 primarily affects uninsured drivers. Drivers of uninsured vehicles are only entitled to recover economic damages after an accident. If the vehicle was insured at the time of the accident, Prop 213 does not apply, and drivers will be eligible for full recovery for your injuries.

Prop 213 only applies to non-economic damages such as pain and suffering, mental distress, physical impairment, and disfigurement. Even if you are affected by Prop 213, you will still be entitled to economic damages from the accident. Economic damages consist of medical expenses, car and property repairs, and lost wages.

Passengers will not be barred from damages under Prop 213 and will be eligible to recover both economic and noneconomic damages even if the car was uninsured.

Prop 213 also affects those who are driving under the influence. If a driver is under the influence of drugs or alcohol and gets in an accident, regardless of who caused it, may be unable to recover non-economic damages.

Proposition 213 Exceptions

Proposition 213 has some limited exceptions where a driver still may be able to recover non-economic damages even if they or the vehicle is uninsured.


  1. Prop 213 will not apply if the vehicle that the driver was using during the accident was an employer’s vehicle that was not insured.
  2. Prop 213 will not apply when the accident occurred on private property.
  3. Prop 213 will not apply if the owner of a car does not have insurance, but the driver who borrowed the car does have insurance on a different car.
  4. Prop 213 will not apply if the driver who hit you was under the influence of alcohol and is convicted of a DUI.

It is important to note, if you get in an accident and were not insured, you can still recovery economic compensation and should seek legal help.

At Gould & Jefferson of Beverly Hills, we have the ability to assist with automobile accidents. Our firm has recovered millions of dollars for our clients and we will fight for you or your loved ones until we obtain the recovery that is deserved. Call us at (310) 899-9529 and let our team get started for you right away.

Written by Gabriella Sole