In the interest of public safety, motorists have long been required by Virginia law to carry liability coverage on their auto insurance policies for personal and commercial vehicles.
This law now extends to motorists who operate vehicles exempt from registration requirements as defined by the Code of Virginia. This condition is part of SB 733, which became Virginia law on July 1.
SB 733 was introduced by Senator Frank M. Ruff Jr., R-Clarksville, at the 2022 Virginia General Assembly, in part to mitigate the misuse of agricultural use signs. This issue was also addressed in HB 179 and SB 186, which will come into effect on July 1, 2023.
“The new law now requires that all motor vehicles exempt from registration be covered by some form of liability insurance, including vehicles for agricultural use,” explained Andrew Smith, associate director of government relations at Virginia Farm. Federation office.
“Because exempt vehicles are not registered, they were not required to carry liability insurance,” he added. “With new legislation now in force, farmers must have cover in place when driving their vehicles on public roads.”
In addition to farm-use vehicles, the new legislation requires that any exempt vehicle, trailer or semi-trailer be insured with bodily injury liability and property damage liability insurance.
This coverage can be obtained under a general liability policy, an automobile insurance policy or an umbrella policy, which can include farm owner policies.
The bill also states that motorists may be required to provide proof to law enforcement that their vehicles, trailers or semi-trailers are insured under SB 733. Proof must be provided within 30 days.
Failure to provide such proof will subject motorists to a $600 fine to be paid to the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles Uninsured Motorist Fund.