Proof of insurance required when renewing car tags in 2013
by CHRIS NORWOOD
Starting at the first of 2013, residents will have to provide proof of insurance in order to buy or renew a car tag in Alabama.

According to material provided by the Talladega County Department of Revenue, “license plate issuing officials will attempt to verify liability insurance utilizing the State of Alabama Online Insurance Verification System, which will allow license plate issuing officials to immediately verify the insurance status of a vehicle at any point in time. If insurance cannot be verified through the Online Insurance Verification System, vehicle owners must provide evidence of insurance to the license plate issuing official. The insurance card is the most common evidence of current insurance. To be acceptable, the proof of insurance must display the current effective date, insurer’s North American Industry Classification number, vehicle identification number and policy number.”

Residents must also provide either an Alabama drivers’ license, an Alabama non-driver identification card or a national driver’s license for every owner listed on the vehicle’s title. If the vehicle is registered to a company, the Federal Employer Identification Number is required.

Law enforcement will also begin using OIVS at the first of the year during traffic stops and at traffic accidents.

State law says that “no person shall operate, register or maintain registration of a motor vehicle designed to be used on a public road or highway unless it is covered by a liability insurance policy.”

According to the information provided by the Revenue Department, “The law was passed to protect consumers when they are involved in an accident.”

The policy must be issued by a company licensed to sell insurance in Alabama. The coverage should be at least $25,000 for the death or bodily injury of one person, $50,000 for the death or bodily injury of two or more people and $25,000 for damage or destruction of property.

A person convicted of not having mandatory insurance faces a $500 fine for first offense and a $1,000 fine for a second or subsequent conviction, as well as a six-month driver’s license suspension.

The vehicle registration can also be suspended for six months, with the owner paying a $200 reinstatement fee for first offense and a $400 reinstatement and mandatory four-month suspension for second and subsequent offenses.

Evidence of insurance must be shown for a title to be reinstated.

Contact Chris Norwood at cnorwood@dailyhome.com.

© 2012