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S.B. 151





Sponsor: Dan R. Eastman

             5      This act modifies the Motor Vehicle Code by allowing the Department of Public Safety to
             6      disclose vehicle accident history information.
             7      This act affects sections of Utah Code Annotated 1953 as follows:
             8      AMENDS:
             9          41-6-40, as last amended by Chapter 85, Laws of Utah 2001
             10      Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
             11          Section 1. Section 41-6-40 is amended to read:
             12           41-6-40. Accident reports -- When confidential -- Insurance policy information -- Use
             13      as evidence -- Penalty for false information.
             14          (1) As used in this section, "agent" means a person's:
             15          (a) attorney;
             16          (b) insurer; or
             17          (c) any other individual or entity with signed permission from the person to receive the
             18      person's accident report.
             19          (2) Except as provided in Subsection (3), all accident reports required in this article to be
             20      filed with the department:
             21          (a) are without prejudice to the reporting individual;
             22          (b) are protected and for the confidential use of the department or other state, local, or
             23      federal agencies having use for the records for official governmental statistical, investigative, and
             24      accident prevention purposes; and
             25          (c) may be disclosed only in a statistical form that protects the privacy of any person
             26      involved in the accident.
             27          (3) (a) The department shall disclose an accident report and its accompanying data to:

             28          (i) a person involved in the accident, excluding a witness to the accident;
             29          (ii) a person suffering loss or injury in the accident;
             30          (iii) an agent, parent, or legal guardian of a person described in Subsections (3)(a)(i) and
             31      (ii);
             32          (iv) a member of the press or broadcast news media;
             33          (v) a state, local, or federal agency that uses the records for official governmental,
             34      investigative, or accident prevention purposes;
             35          (vi) law enforcement personnel when acting in their official governmental capacity; and
             36          (vii) a licensed private investigator.
             37          (b) In accordance with Subsection (3)(a), the department shall disclose whether any person
             38      or vehicle involved in an accident reported under this section was covered by a vehicle insurance
             39      policy, and the name of the insurer.
             40          (c) Information provided to a member of the press or broadcast news media under
             41      Subsection (3)(a)(iv) may only include:
             42          (i) the name, age, sex, and city of residence of each person involved in the accident;
             43          (ii) the make and model year of each vehicle involved in the accident;
             44          (iii) whether or not each person involved in the accident was covered by a vehicle
             45      insurance policy;
             46          (iv) the location of the accident; and
             47          (v) a description of the accident that excludes personal identifying information not listed
             48      in Subsection (3)(c)(i).
             49          (d) The department shall disclose to any requesting person the following vehicle accident
             50      history information:
             51          (i) the make, model year, and vehicle identification number of each vehicle involved in
             52      the accident;
             53          (ii) the date of the accident; and
             54          (iii) any electronically available data, that excludes personal identifying information, which
             55      describes the accident, including a description of any physical damage to the vehicle.
             56          (4) (a) Except as provided in Subsection (4)(b), accident reports filed under this section
             57      may not be used as evidence in any civil or criminal trial arising out of an accident.
             58          (b) Upon demand of any party to the trial or upon demand of any court, the department

             59      shall furnish a certificate showing that a specified accident report has or has not been made to the
             60      department in compliance with law. If the report has been made, the certificate furnished by the
             61      department shall show the date, time, and location of the accident, the names and addresses of the
             62      drivers, the owners of the vehicles involved, and the investigating officers. The reports may be
             63      used as evidence when necessary to prosecute charges filed in connection with a violation of
             64      Subsection (5).
             65          (5) A person who gives information in reports as required in this chapter knowing or
             66      having reason to believe that the information is false is guilty of a class A misdemeanor.

Legislative Review Note
    as of 1-18-02 11:04 AM

A limited legal review of this legislation raises no obvious constitutional or statutory concerns.

Office of Legislative Research and General Counsel

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