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Insurance Bulletin

Regarding Recently Enacted Laws

Contact: Reyn Norman

334 241-4119

5/19/2000

TO: All Property and Casualty Insurance Companies

FROM: D. David Parsons, Acting Commissioner of Insurance

RE: Recently Enacted Laws

  • Senate Bill 149, Alabama Act No. 2000-432
  • House Bill 134, Alabama Act No. 2000-554

Please be advised that on May 11, 2000, the Governor signed into law Senate Bill 149, now Alabama Act No. 2000-432. This act, which becomes effective December 1, 2000, requires insurers to include an appropriate reduction in automobile insurance premiums for a person 55 years of age or older who completes an approved accident prevention course, with certain exceptions. Insurers should take steps to ensure that their automobile insurance rating plans comply with this new law.

Please be advised that on May 15, 2000, the Governor signed into law House Bill 134, now Alabama Act No. 2000-554, which provides amendments to the 1999 act that established Alabama’s compulsory automobile liability insurance law. Parts of this act become effective June 1, 2000, including new Section 32-7A-6, Code of Alabama 1975, which sets forth the requirements for the evidence of insurance to be issued for motor vehicles in this state. Please note that while insurers are not required to file these cards for approval by this office, insurers should take steps to ensure that their cards comply with this new law.

DDP/RN/bc

ENCLOSURE (TEXT OF PERTINENT SECTIONS OF NEW LAWS)

Alabama Act No. 2000-432 (Senate Bill 149, 2000 Regular Session) [effective 12/1/2000], reads, in pertinent part, as follows:

Section 1.

  1. Any rates, rating schedules, or rating manuals submitted to or filed with the Commissioner of the Department of Insurance for private passenger automobile liability insurance and private passenger automobile physical damage insurance shall include an appropriate reduction in premium charges if the principal operator is 55 years of age or older and has successfully completed a motor vehicle accident prevention course approved pursuant to this act.

  2. Upon successful completion of an approved motor vehicle accident prevention course, each participant shall be issued, by the course’s sponsoring entity, a certificate of completion which shall be the basis of the qualification for the reduction in the automobile insurance premium.

  3. The premium reduction required in this section shall be effective for an insured for a three-year period after successful completion of the approved course, except that the insurer may require, as a condition of providing and maintaining the premium reduction, that the insured not be involved in an accident for which the insured is at fault nor be found guilty of a moving violation during the three-year period after course completion.

  4. Any discount used by an insurer shall be presumed appropriate unless credible evidence data demonstrates otherwise.

  5. This section shall not apply if the approved course is taken by a person who is specified by a court or other governmental entity resulting from a moving traffic violation.

  6. Each participant shall take an approved course every three years to continue to be eligible for the reduction in premiums provided in this section.

Section 2. To qualify for the insurance premium reduction described in Section 1, the motor vehicle accident prevention course shall be sponsored by the National Safety Council, the American Automobile Association, or the American Association of Retired Persons or shall be an equivalent program approved by the Department of Public Safety. The program shall consist of not less than eight classroom hours of instruction, the instructors for the program shall be certified by the sponsoring entity, and the contents of the course shall be outlined by the sponsoring entity.

Section 3. The provisions of this act shall not apply to individuals 55 years of age or older that are already receiving a rate reduction, based on attained age, from their insurance company.

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Section 32-7A-6, Code of Alabama 1975 [effective 6/1/2000], reads, in pertinent part, as follows:

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(b) The insurer issuing the liability insurance policy shall provide an insurance card for each motor vehicle insured that shall contain the following information:

  1. The vehicle year model.
  2. The vehicle make.
  3. The vehicle identification number (VIN).
  4. The name of the insured(s).
  5. The name of the insurance company.
  6. The policy number.
  7. The effective date and expiration date, which shall cover a period of time not to exceed 12 months.

(c) Notwithstanding the foregoing, if the insurance card is issued for a fleet policy, the card may state "FLEET" in lieu of vehicle years, makes, and VIN's; and further provided that if the insurance card is issued for a nonowner policy, the card may state "NONOWNER POLICY" in lieu of the vehicle year, make and VIN.

(d) The minimum size of the insurance card shall be 3" by 2 1/8", with a minimum 20 pound paper stock required or the equivalent. All required information shall be displayed on the front of the card. The insurance card may include other information at the discretion of the insurer. Insurance companies may allow authorized representatives to issue temporary insurance cards to satisfy the requirements of this chapter. Temporary insurance cards are not required to have the policy number but shall contain all other required information.

(e) No insurer shall issue a card, similar in appearance, form and content to the insurance card required under this section, in connection with an insurance policy that does not provide the liability insurance coverage required under Section 32-7-4, Code of Alabama 1975.

(f) Insurance binders, certificates of liability insurance, and premium receipts, in order to qualify as proof of insurance, must meet the following requirements (except where noted):

  1. Insurance company name.
  2. Policy number - not required on a binder or premium receipt.
  3. Effective date.
  4. Expiration date.
  5. Name of insured(s).
  6. Vehicle year model - not required if issued for a fleet policy or for a nonowner policy.
  7. Vehicle make - not required if issued for a fleet policy or for a nonowner policy.
  8. Vehicle identification number - not required if issued for a fleet policy or for a nonowner policy.
  9. Date of premium payment - required only on a premium receipt.
  10. Signature of authorized representative.

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