Colo. Legislators Give Thumbs-Up to Electronic Insurance Proof

A unanimous vote on Tuesday cleared the way for Colorado motorists involved in accidents and traffic stops to begin presenting evidence of their insurance electronically.

The approved bill, HB 1159, “allows a driver to use a cell phone or other electronic device to present such evidence” of auto coverage in Colorado and is pending final approval from Gov. John Hickenlooper.

The proposal, from Rep. Paul Rosenthal (D-Denver), enjoyed unanimous support at several stages of the legislative process, including committee votes of 5-0 and 12-0 in both chambers, respectively, while the full state House gave it a 65-0 vote. The latest approval from senators was also unanimous.

Regulations in Colorado had already allowed electronic displays of coverage to be used during the registration process, but the latest bill expands that usage to traffic stops and post-accident scenes.

“Today, cell phones and other electronic devices can easily and reliably store and display the data on a proof of insurance card,” Rosenthal said in a statement. “This bill will permit a person to use a cell phone or other device to present proof of insurance to a police officer.”

The bill would be effective 90 days after the final session of the state Legislature. If sessions adjourn as scheduled on May 8, the bill would be effective Aug. 7, according to the bill.

Electronic Proof Plans Developing in Other States

Wyoming Gov. Matt Mead finalized the state’s proposal to allow electronic proof last week, with the law going into effect on July 1.

A similar proposal got to Arkansas Gov. Mike Beebe in late February. The governor approved SB 243 in early March, making it Act 175 .

Scores of other states, including Colorado, were included in a February listing from the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America (PCI) that stated 21 states were “likely to consider electronic proof” proposals this year.

About Charles Nguyen
Charles Nguyen is an enterprising journalist who reported for Patch.com and the Desert Dispatch and was the editor in chief of the Guardian (the twice-weekly newspaper at the University of California, San Diego) before coming to Online Auto Insurance News.

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