Jail time is a possible penalty if you are convicted of the offense of driving without insurance in Kansas and California finds being an uninsured motorist to be a serious offense so this likely the reason you are required to appear in court in each state you received a citation for this violation.
Kansas laws state that any person operating a motor vehicle upon a highway or upon property open to use by the public in KS shall display, upon demand, evidence of financial security to a law enforcement officer. The law enforcement officer shall issue a citation to any person who fails to display evidence of financial security upon such demand.
It is a Class B misdemeanor to drive without insurance in Kansas. The penalty for this is a fine of not less than $300 nor more than $1,000 or confinement in the county jail for a term of not more than six months, or both such fine and confinement. Normally the KS DOR also will suspend your driver's license and vehicle registration which can be reinstated through payment of a fee and proof of insurance coverage. If you are not a resident of Kansas you will need to contact the Kansas court listed on your citation for driving without insurance to see what penalties you may be facing and if your driving privileges will be suspended there.
In California, driving without insurance is also considered a serious offense. Failure to show proof of insurance when requested may result in fines or a suspended license. If you are stopped by a police officer and asked for proof of insurance and you cannot produce it, you may receive a citation. You can have the ticket nullified by showing proof of insurance in court. You could, however, be assessed an administrative fee for expenses.
Failing to show proof of financial responsibility is a violation of California Vehicle Code Section 16029. Violating this code could result in fines up to $500 plus other penalties such as the impoundment of the vehicle and suspension of your driver's license. If the vehicle is impounded the owner will have to pay for all storage and tow charges.
If you need to purchase auto insurance on your vehicle, follow this link for a quick quote.
As a reminder, if you do not have insurance on a car and travel out of state to a state that requires vehicles on its roadways to be insured (which is most every state within the United States), then you need to comply with the laws of that state. It is important to check with states you drive through to make sure that driving on a surety bond or without auto insurance would not result in you being cited for being an uninsured motorist.