Idaho Lawmakers Propose Online Car Insurance Verification System

A group of Idaho House members are proposing that the state set up an online car insurance verification database that would allow police and other government officials to quickly see whether residents have the proper coverage required under state law.

Idaho state capitolProviders of Idaho auto insurance would feed policy information into the database, and all of that information would get matched up with data on every vehicle registered in the state.

If the database shows registration data for a vehicle but no matching insurance policy, the vehicle owner is liable to get a citation when pulled over by police, who would have 24-7 access to information contained in the database.

Information in the database would also be accessible to the Department of Transportation, the Department of Insurance and the courts.

The current penalties for driving uninsured in the state of Idaho are a $75 fine for a first offense, and up to a $1,000 fine for subsequent offenses that occur within five years.

The authors write in the bill’s statement of purpose that the “number of uninsured motorists on Idaho’s roadways is a rising concern.” But according to industry estimates, Idaho has had one of the lowest rates of uninsured motorists in the country.

The Insurance Research Council estimated that fewer than 1 in 10 drivers in the state was on the road without proper coverage in 2009. That placed Idaho as having the seventh-lowest rate in the country. The nationwide uninsured motorist rate was estimated to be about 1 in 7.

According to legislative documents, the bill’s authors estimate the program to cost about $150,000 initially and then $50,000 every year once it is up and running.

The tentative launch date for the verification system would be January 2014.

About John Pirro
John Pirro is a licensed fire and casualty insurance agent specializing in various aspects of the auto insurance industry. He worked in the auto body repair industry before taking a reporting position at Online Auto Insurance News.

One Response to “Idaho Lawmakers Propose Online Car Insurance Verification System”

  1. Don Birkholz
    22. Feb, 2012 at 3:59 pm #

    Hasn’t anyone questioned the accuracy of these databases. I have seen three reports that these databases are inaccurate, from the smaller insurance companies not having the ability to transfer their data to the database, to many mismatches. Oklahoma said its database information was only 60% accurate. Nevada switched its provider and still got mismatched data. Also, if Mrs Jones tells her insurance agent that her DUI husband and two teens will not be driving, and she turns around and lets them drive without insurance, the database will only be 25% accurate as to who is driving insured. It will be zero accurate as to the high risk family members driving without insurance. Why not have a similar database to track the number of poor who have to go on food stamps due to mandatory auto insurance. Or are we going to continue to stick our heads in the sand and not address the problem. Dr Maril did a study that showed (in a poor area of Arizona) 44% said they could not buy food or pay rent due to mandatory auto insurance. Idaho probably has 100,000 on food stamps. These poor shouldn’t be buying auto insurance if they cannot afford food. Jesus said “Blessed are the poor” Mandatory auto insurance says “to heck with the poor” Doesn’t anyone in the Idaho legislature go to church anymore? If someone is driving a 2,00$ car and is on their way to work, I will help them get reimbursed in a traffic accident. If they are driving a 20,000$ vehicle which they do not need and have no right to drive on the public roads and get into an accident with an uninsured, that is tough. Obey your insurance agent and get collision and uninsured coverage.

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