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In Fall 205, Representative Aric Nesbitt, R-Lawton, suggested a bill allowing drivers to use their phone as proof of insurance. With technology readily available and so many people having cell phones, why couldn’t this be an option?

House Bill No. 4193

House Bill No. 4193 took effect on January 5, 2016. The law states, ” If a person displays an electronic copy of his or her certificate of insurance using an electronic device, the police officer shall only view the electronic copy of the certificate of insurance and shall not manipulate the electronic device to view any other information on the electronic device. […] A police officer may require the person to electronically forward the electronic copy of the certificate of insurance to a specified location provided by the police officer. The police officer may then view the electronic copy of the certificate of insurance in a setting in which it is safe for the officer to verify that the information contained in the electronic copy of the certificate of insurance is valid and accurate.”

Benefit

While you should still keep a paper copy of your insurance in your car, it is easy to forget to reprint it when your insurance renews. The law allows Michigan drivers to show they are insured and up to date on their coverage, without being penalized. If a driver is unable to provide proof of insurance, they are charged with a civil infraction of $25.00. How is this fair if you are insured but just don’t happen to have it printed out? Hence, House Bill No. 4193.

Nesbitt also argued House Bill No. 4193 would help cut down on insurance fraud. It is much harder to falsify insurance documents on your electronic device when you pull it up in the app than it is to falsify a piece of paper. Between the ease of pulling up documents and preventing insurance fraud, this saves both time and money. In 2011-2012 over 110,000 tickets were given to drivers who did not have proof of insurance.

Good to Know

Even though this bill went into effect in 2016, many people do not know they can use their phone as proof of insurance. Share this tip with your friends and family.

**Please don’t text and drive.**

 

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