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Bill would show insurance limits on cards

November 22, 2010
The insurance card that must be carried with every vehicle, to show proof of insurance, would indicate the liability coverage limits applicable to that vehicle, under a bill currently before the Illinois House. Representatives are debating House Bill 1335 to amend the Illinois Vehicle Code to include a declaration of coverage limits. The cards currently do not identify  insurance limits, and the state's powerful insurance lobby has been reluctant to include the information, supposing that persons in an accident who have higher insurance limits might be pursued more vigorously by lawyers than those with lesser limits The bill would help dealers. A law enacted in 2003 shifts insurance responsibility on loaner vehicles to the driver. The dealer's insurer is the secondary insurer on loaners and remains primary on test drives. However, if a customer's insurance policy does not have a 100/300/50 liability minimum ($100,000 for bodily injury or death of any person; $300,000 for bodily injury of death of any two or more persons in one accident; and $50,000 for property damage), the dealer's insurance reverts to primary on the loaner. When they issue a loaner, dealerships currently are often resigned to verbal declarations from customers that their insurance meets the liability minimums. In fact, many people cannot correctly recite their insurance coverage limits. The bill has passed one reading in the House and now is before the Rules Committee. Bills with three favorable readings move to the General Assembly's second chamber for similar action.