Having car insurance in Alabama is mandatory.
But just like any law, there are people who break it.
And this is something state officials are trying to fix.
“Alabama is in the top ten of states that have the highest amount of uninsured drivers.” Flowers Insurance customer service representative Shannon Bourdeaux said.
In June, Houston County was part of a pilot program.
So they tried out an online verification system.
When a person went to register their car, the system would show if the person had insurance.
“If they come in to register that vehicle and we pull them up in the system and that has no insurance information. They’ll have to provide us a current insurance card with the vin number and the date and AIC number and policy number for us to enter in.”Houston County Tag line supervisor Beatrice Carroll said.
Starting in January, the whole state will be adopting this program.
They say it will also put a stop to people trying to work the system.
“The hopes are and my understanding of going to this online is that in the event somebody did that, then the state will already be notified and then their registration will be suspended.” Carroll said.
Car insurance companies have until January 1st to put all of their customer’s information into the system.
She says the line for tags may be a little longer than normal, until this process is better understood.
“It’s slowed us down a bit, but I think in the long run its going to be good.” Carroll said.
Insurance companies think this is the perfect way to protect those on the road.
“If you don’t not have insurance and you cause an accident, that person has no way to get back their property damage.” Bourdeaux said.
Bourdeaux believes other states will follow this system.
A person found violating the law will be fined 500 dollars for the first offense and 1000 for the second.
In addition to the fines, the vehicle registration will be suspended.