Understanding Idaho's New Auto Insurance Law
You may have received a letter from the Idaho Transportation Department (ITD) saying they don't have proof of insurance on your vehicle. If you did, you may be wondering how this could be since you have had the vehicle insured. While that may be the case, ITD is sending these letters because of a new law in Idaho effective January 1, 2020. Code 49-1234 requires the Idaho Transportation Department's Division of Motor Vehicles (ITD) to determine monthly whether the owner of a vehicle has insurance.
The law applies only to non-commercial vehicle types and also excludes trailers and off-highway vehicles. Vehicle owners without vehicle insurance coverage for two consecutive months will receive a warning and be given 30 days to provide proof of insurance or obtain an exemption before their vehicle registration is suspended.
But with the implementation of any new law, comes some unique challenges:
To start, commercial vehicles (Idaho Code 49-434) and vehicles that are not required to provide proof of insurance are excluded or exempt from the law, BUT the problem is the Idaho Transportation Department's (ITD) online insurance verification system has no way of knowing which vehicles are insured under "commercial motor vehicle coverage.”
The solution ITD has come up with is if your vehicle is insured under commercial motor vehicle coverage, then the registered owner of the vehicle must fill out an "Exception Form" and send it back to ITD with proof that the vehicle is insured. This currently must be done FOR EVERY PRIVATE PASSENGER TYPE VEHICLE, and it is our current understanding from ITD that this action will have to be repeated EVERY YEAR.
We originally understood from ITD that they were automatically filtering out any vehicles that were clearly registered to Corporations, LLCs, etc., but that is not happening either. Those clients are receiving warning letters as well, stating that their insurance is not being verified even if they are not required to be verified by the Statute.
The Idaho Department of Insurance Director, Dean Cameron, is aware of the problem and will be reaching out to ITD to work on a resolution, but in the meantime, we are here to help our clients navigate the challenges arising from the law and how to comply with it.
What you need to do:
If you have received a letter requesting proof of coverage from ITD, you will need to send a exception form into ITD on each unit you receive a notice on to make sure your registration doesn't get pulled on that listed vehicle. They are also requiring a certificate of insurance showing the vehicles that are insured on your policy. We can get the certificate for you. Once you have them, please send both the Exception form(s) and Certificate to ITD together at firstname.lastname@example.org
For copies of the exception form please click here.
In addition, here is a link to the ITD https://itd.idaho.gov/itddmv/ that should address most other questions that may come up for now.
This is still developing, so we'll work to keep you advised as we learn more. Please contact us with any questions or concerns. We're here to help.