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.

No comments yet.

Comment on this article