(a) The department may review registrations of motor vehicles subject to Section 32-7A-4, or owners thereof, for the purpose of verifying whether or not the motor vehicles are insured through an online insurance verification system. If the department cannot verify the insurance status of a vehicle using the online insurance verification system or other such method for deposits of cash or motor vehicle insurance liability bonds, the department may send owners requests for information about their motor vehicles and liability insurance in accordance with subsections (d) and (e).

Terms Used In Alabama Code 32-7A-7

  • department: The Alabama State Law Enforcement Agency of this state acting directly or through its duly authorized officers and agents. See Alabama Code 16-36-23
  • director: The Secretary of the Alabama State Law Enforcement Agency of Alabama. See Alabama Code 16-36-23
  • Evidence: Information presented in testimony or in documents that is used to persuade the fact finder (judge or jury) to decide the case for one side or the other.
  • MOTOR VEHICLE: Every vehicle which is self-propelled and every vehicle which is propelled by electric power obtained from overhead trolley wires, but not operated upon rails, except for electric personal assistive mobility devices. See Alabama Code 16-36-23
  • owner: A person, other than a lienholder, having the property in or title to a vehicle. See Alabama Code 16-36-23
  • registration: The registration certificate or certificates and registration plates issued under the laws of this state pertaining to the registration of vehicles. See Alabama Code 16-36-23
  • state: A state, territory, or possession of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or a province of Canada. See Alabama Code 16-36-23
  • vehicle: Every device in, upon, or by which any person or property is or may be transported or drawn upon a highway, excepting devices moved by human power or used exclusively upon stationary rails or tracks or electric personal assistive mobility devices; provided, that for the purposes of this title, a bicycle or a ridden animal shall be deemed a vehicle, except those provisions of this title, which by their very nature can have no application. See Alabama Code 16-36-23

(b) In addition to such review of motor vehicle registrations in subsection (a), the department may select and review for verification other sources of information including, but not limited to, registrations of motor vehicles owned by persons:

(1) Whose motor vehicle registrations have been suspended pursuant to Section 32-7A-12 or any other provision of this chapter.

(2) Who have been convicted of violating Section 32-7A-16 while operating vehicles owned by other persons.

(3) Whose driving privileges have been suspended or revoked.

(4) Who have received a disposition of supervision by the courts of this state for a violation of the provisions of this chapter.

(c) The director shall provide to the department, in a manner designated by the department, the name of an owner or operator of any motor vehicle involved in an accident without liability insurance who is determined not to be subject to the suspension by the director pursuant to the provisions of Section 32-7-6. The director shall also provide to the department, in a manner designated by the department, the name of an owner or operator of any motor vehicle that has been found in violation of Section 32-7A-16.

The department may then verify whether or not at the time of the accident such motor vehicle was covered by a liability insurance policy or commercial automobile liability insurance policy in accordance with Section 32-7A-4.

(d) The department may send to owners of selected motor vehicles or to selected motor vehicle owners, requests for information about their motor vehicles and liability insurance coverage. The request shall require the owner to provide:

(1) Whether or not the motor vehicle was insured on the verification date stated in the department’s request, and the reason no insurance existed for the vehicle if not insured.

(2) The name, address, NAIC number, and telephone number of the insurance company that insures the motor vehicle.

(3) The effective date of the policy and the expiration date of the policy.

(4) The owner’s signature.

(5) The policy number.

(e) Within 30 calendar days after the department mails a request, the owner to whom it is sent shall furnish the requested information to the department in a manner as prescribed by the department. Evidence of insurance in effect on the verification date, as prescribed by the department, may be considered by the department to be a satisfactory response to the request for information.

(f) Any owner whose response indicates that his or her vehicle did not have liability insurance coverage on the insurance verification date in accordance with Section 32-7A-4 shall be deemed to have registered or maintained registration of a motor vehicle in violation of that section. Any owner who fails to respond to such a request shall be deemed to have registered or maintained registration of a motor vehicle in violation of Section 32-7A-4.

(g) If the owner responds to the request for information by asserting that his or her vehicle did have liability insurance coverage in accordance with Section 32-7A-4 on the verification date stated in the department’s request, the department may conduct a verification of the response by furnishing necessary information to the insurer named in the response. The insurer shall within 30 calendar days inform the department if on the verification date stated the motor vehicle was not insured by the insurer in accordance with Section 32-7A-4 or the department may verify the response by using the online insurance verification system.

(h) No review of registration selected under this section shall be categorized on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, ancestry, age, marital status, physical or mental disability, economic status, or geography.

(Act 2000-554, p. 1005, §1; Act 2011-688, p. 2076, §2.)