Chief Sponsor: Lyle W. Hillyard

House Sponsor: Val K. Potter


8     General Description:
9          This bill allows disclosure by the Office of State Debt Collection of accident report
10     information to certain interested parties.
11     Highlighted Provisions:
12          This bill:
13          ▸     allows the Office of State Debt Collection to disclose information in an accident
14     report to:
15               •     a person, other than a witness, involved in the accident;
16               •     the owner of a vehicle involved in the accident; and
17               •     an agent, parent, or legal guardian of a person involved in the accident.
18     Money Appropriated in this Bill:
19          None
20     Other Special Clauses:
21          None
22     Utah Code Sections Affected:
23     AMENDS:
24          41-6a-404, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2010, Chapter 220

26     Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
27          Section 1. Section 41-6a-404 is amended to read:

28          41-6a-404. Accident reports -- When confidential -- Insurance policy information
29     -- Use as evidence -- Penalty for false information.
30          (1) As used in this section:
31          [(b)] (a) "Accompanying data" means all materials gathered by the investigating peace
32     officer in an accident investigation including:
33          (i) the identity of witnesses and, if known, contact information;
34          (ii) witness statements;
35          (iii) photographs and videotapes;
36          (iv) diagrams; and
37          (v) field notes.
38          [(a)] (b) "Agent" means:
39          (i) a person's attorney;
40          (ii) a person's insurer;
41          (iii) a general acute hospital, as defined in Section 26-21-2, that:
42          (A) has an emergency room; and
43          (B) is providing or has provided emergency services to the person in relation to the
44     accident; or
45          (iv) any other individual or entity with signed permission from the person to receive
46     the person's accident report.
47          (2) (a) Except as provided in [Subsection] Subsections (3) and (7), all accident reports
48     required in this part to be filed with the department:
49          (i) are without prejudice to the reporting individual;
50          (ii) are protected and for the confidential use of the department or other state, local, or
51     federal agencies having use for the records for official governmental statistical, investigative,
52     and accident prevention purposes; and
53          (iii) may be disclosed only in a statistical form that protects the privacy of any person
54     involved in the accident.
55          (b) An investigating peace officer shall include in an accident report an indication as to
56     whether the accident occurred on a highway designated as a livestock highway in accordance
57     with Section 72-3-112 if the accident resulted in the injury or death of livestock.
58          (3) (a) Subject to the provisions of this section, the department or the responsible law

59     enforcement agency employing the peace officer that investigated the accident shall disclose an
60     accident report to:
61          (i) a person involved in the accident, excluding a witness to the accident;
62          (ii) a person suffering loss or injury in the accident;
63          (iii) an agent, parent, or legal guardian of a person described in Subsections (3)(a)(i)
64     and (ii);
65          (iv) subject to Subsection (3)(d), a member of the press or broadcast news media;
66          (v) a state, local, or federal agency that uses the records for official governmental,
67     investigative, or accident prevention purposes;
68          (vi) law enforcement personnel when acting in their official governmental capacity;
69     and
70          (vii) a licensed private investigator.
71          (b) The responsible law enforcement agency employing the peace officer that
72     investigated the accident:
73          (i) shall in compliance with Subsection (3)(a):
74          (A) disclose an accident report; or
75          (B) upon written request disclose an accident report and its accompanying data within
76     10 business days from receipt of a written request for disclosure; or
77          (ii) may withhold an accident report, and any of its accompanying data if disclosure
78     would jeopardize an ongoing criminal investigation or criminal prosecution.
79          (c) In accordance with Subsection (3)(a), the department or the responsible law
80     enforcement agency employing the investigating peace officer shall disclose whether any
81     person or vehicle involved in an accident reported under this section was covered by a vehicle
82     insurance policy, and the name of the insurer.
83          (d) Information provided to a member of the press or broadcast news media under
84     Subsection (3)(a)(iv) may only include:
85          (i) the name, age, sex, and city of residence of each person involved in the accident;
86          (ii) the make and model year of each vehicle involved in the accident;
87          (iii) whether or not each person involved in the accident was covered by a vehicle
88     insurance policy;
89          (iv) the location of the accident; and

90          (v) a description of the accident that excludes personal identifying information not
91     listed in Subsection (3)(d)(i).
92          (e) The department shall disclose to any requesting person the following vehicle
93     accident history information, excluding personal identifying information, in bulk electronic
94     form:
95          (i) any vehicle identifying information that is electronically available, including the
96     make, model year, and vehicle identification number of each vehicle involved in an accident;
97          (ii) the date of the accident; and
98          (iii) any electronically available data which describes the accident, including a
99     description of any physical damage to the vehicle.
100          (f) The department may establish a fee under Section 63J-1-504 based on the fair
101     market value of the information for providing bulk vehicle accident history information under
102     Subsection (3)(e).
103          (4) (a) Except as provided in Subsection (4)(b), accident reports filed under this section
104     may not be used as evidence in any civil or criminal trial arising out of an accident.
105          (b) (i) Upon demand of any party to the trial or upon demand of any court, the
106     department shall furnish a certificate showing that a specified accident report has or has not
107     been made to the department in compliance with law.
108          (ii) If the report has been made, the certificate furnished by the department shall show:
109          (A) the date, time, and location of the accident;
110          (B) the names and addresses of the drivers;
111          (C) the owners of the vehicles involved; and
112          (D) the investigating peace officers.
113          (iii) The reports may be used as evidence when necessary to prosecute charges filed in
114     connection with a violation of Subsection (5).
115          (5) A person who gives information in reports as required in this part knowing or
116     having reason to believe that the information is false is guilty of a class A misdemeanor.
117          (6) The department and the responsible law enforcement agency employing the
118     investigating peace officer may charge a reasonable fee determined by the department under
119     Section 63J-1-504 for the cost incurred in disclosing an accident report or an accident report
120     and any of its accompanying data under Subsections (3)(a) and (b).

121          (7) (a) The Office of State Debt Collection may, in the performance of its regular
122     duties, disclose an accident report to:
123          (i) a person involved in the accident, excluding a witness to the accident;
124          (ii) an owner of a vehicle involved in the accident; or
125          (iii) an agent, parent, or legal guardian of a person described in Subsection (7)(a)(i) or
126     (ii).
127          (b) A disclosure under Subsection (7)(a) does not change the classification of the
128     record as a protected record under Section 63G-2-305.

Legislative Review Note
Office of Legislative Research and General Counsel