Article 13.

The Vehicle Financial Responsibility Act of 1957.

20-309. Financial responsibility prerequisite to registration; must be maintained throughout registration period.

(a) No motor vehicle shall be registered in this State unless the owner at the time of registration provides proof of financial responsibility for the operation of such motor vehicle, as provided in this Article. The owner of each motor vehicle registered in this State shall maintain financial responsibility continuously throughout the period of registration. For purposes of this Article, the term "motor vehicle" includes mopeds, as that term is defined in G.S. 20-4.01.

(a1) An owner of a commercial motor vehicle, as defined in G.S. 20-4.01(3d), shall have financial responsibility for the operation of the motor vehicle in an amount equal to that required for for-hire carriers transporting nonhazardous property in interstate or foreign commerce in 49 C.F.R. 387.9.

(a2) Notwithstanding any other provision of this Chapter, an owner's policy of liability insurance issued to a foster parent or parents, which policy includes an endorsement excluding coverage for one or more foster children residing in the foster parent's or parents' household, may be certified as proof of financial responsibility, provided that each foster child for whom coverage is excluded is insured in an amount equal to or greater than the minimum limits required by G.S. 20-279.21 under some other owner's policy of liability insurance or a named nonowner's policy of liability insurance. The North Carolina Rate Bureau shall establish, with the approval of the Commissioner of Insurance, a named driver exclusion endorsement or endorsements for foster children as described herein.

(b) Financial responsibility shall be a liability insurance policy or a financial security bond or a financial security deposit or by qualification as a self-insurer, as these terms are defined and described in Article 9A, Chapter 20 of the General Statutes of North Carolina, as amended.

(c) When it is certified that financial responsibility is a liability insurance policy, the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles may require that the owner produce records to prove the fact of such insurance, and failure to produce such records shall be prima facie evidence that no financial responsibility exists with regard to the vehicle concerned. It shall be the duty of insurance companies, upon request of the Division, to verify the accuracy of any owner's certification.

(c1) The proof of insurance required to demonstrate financial responsibility under subsection (c) of this section may be satisfied by producing records of insurance in either physical or electronic format. Acceptable electronic formats include display of electronic images on a mobile phone or other portable electronic device produced through an application or Web site of the insurer.

(d) When liability insurance with regard to any motor vehicle is terminated by cancellation or failure to renew, or the owner's financial responsibility for the operation of any motor vehicle is otherwise terminated, the owner shall forthwith surrender the registration certificate and plates of the vehicle to the Division of Motor Vehicles unless financial responsibility is maintained in some other manner in compliance with this Article.

(e) Repealed by Session Laws 2006-213, s. 5, effective July 1, 2008, and applicable to lapses occurring on or after that date.

(f) The Commissioner shall administer and enforce the provisions of this Article and may make rules and regulations necessary for its administration and shall provide for hearings upon request of persons aggrieved by orders or acts of the Commissioner under the provisions of this Article.

(g) Repealed by Session Laws 2007-484, s. 7(a), effective July 1, 2008, and applicable to lapses occurring on or after that date.

(h) Recodified as G.S. 20-311(g) by Session Laws 2007-484, s. 7(d), effective July 1, 2008, and applicable to lapses occurring on or after that date. (1957, c. 1393, s. 1; 1959, c. 1277, s. 1; 1963, c. 964, s. 1; 1965, c. 272; c. 1136, ss. 1, 2; 1967, c. 822, ss. 1, 2; c. 857, ss. 1, 2; 1971, c. 477, ss. 1, 2; c. 924; 1975, c. 302; c. 348, ss. 1-3; c. 716, s. 5; 1979, 2nd Sess., c. 1279, s. 1; 1981, c. 690, s. 25; 1983, c. 761, s. 146; 1983 (Reg. Sess., 1984), c. 1069, ss. 1, 2; 1985, c. 666, s. 84; 1991, c. 402, s. 1; 1999-330, s. 4; 1999-452, s. 20; 2000-140, s. 100(a); 2000-155, s. 20; 2005-276, s. 6.37(p); 2006-213, s. 5; 2006-264, s. 38; 2007-484, ss. 7(a), (d); 2009-550, s. 4; 2015-125, s. 3; 2015-135, s. 4.3; 2015-146, s. 4.)