Bill Summaries: S623 (2021)

  • Summary date: Apr 8 2021 - View summary

    Revises Article 10B, Peer-to-Peer Vehicle Sharing, of GS Chapter 20 as follows. 

    Makes the following changes to the Article's defined terms. Adds the terms peer-to-peer vehicle sharing facilitator, shared vehicle delivery period, shared vehicle driver, vehicle sharing agreement, vehicle sharing period, vehicle sharing start time, and vehicle sharing termination time. Revises shared vehicle owner, now defined as the registered owner of a shared vehicle who has not made an election under GS 105-187.5 regarding a retailer's election to pay tax on the gross receipts of the limited possession commitment of a vehicle rather than the highway tax. No longer defines peer-to-peer vehicle sharing or sharing program or vehicle sharing provider. Defines peer-to-peer sharing facilitator to mean a marketplace facilitator that facilitates a short-term motor vehicle rental where the marketplace seller is the registered owner of the vehicle who has not made an election under GS 105-187.5. Makes changes throughout to refer to "peer-to-peer vehicle sharing facilitator" rather than "peer-to-peer vehicle sharing program."

    Enacts the following provisions to the Article.

    Requires peer-to-peer sharing facilitators (facilitators) to ensure that a shared vehicle owner and a shared vehicle driver are insured by a liability policy that meets six specified criteria during each car sharing period, including specified minimum coverage limits and requiring the policy recognize that the shared vehicle under the policy is made available and used through a facilitator. Requires the qualifying insurance to be held by either the shared vehicle owner, shared vehicle driver, facilitator, or a combination of the three. Establishes insurance requirements for facilitators. Requires facilitators seeking to sell insurance coverage for use of shared vehicles to be licensed by the Commissioner of Insurance under GS 58-33-17.1, as enacted. Does not require insurers to sell policies providing the required coverage for shared vehicles and their use. States information that must be exchanged by specified parties in a claims coverage investigation or accident, including the description of the coverage, exclusions, and limits provided under any insurance policy.

    Details three activities that the Article does not affect, including the ability of a shared owner or a shared driver to obtain secondary insurance coverage in excess of the minimum requirements, the facilitator's ability to seek indemnification from a shared vehicle owner or driver or to own or maintain multiple liability policies providing coverage, and the ability of the insurer to seek recovery against the insurer of the facilitator.

    Details three actions that the Article does not affect regarding insurers, including an insurer's right to exclude coverage for the use of a shared vehicle, to cancel or not renew policies, or to underwrite any insurance policy.

    Deems liability of the facilitator for its acts or omissions that are the proximate cause of death, bodily injury, or property damage to a person in any accident because of the use of a shared vehicle not limited or restricted by the Article. Adds that facilitators and shared vehicle owners are exempt from vicarious liability and State and local laws that impose liability solely based on vehicle ownership.

    Requires facilitators to give notice to shared vehicle owners prior to the owner making a shared vehicle available that the use of the shared vehicle through the facilitator might violate the terms of the contract with a lienholder, if applicable. 

    Lists seven required disclosures that must be included in a vehicle sharing agreement between a shared vehicle owner and a shared vehicle driver, including the right of the facilitator to seek indemnification as specified, that either party can obtain additional insurance coverage in excess of the Article's minimum requirements, and that the facilitator's insurance coverage is in effect only during a vehicle sharing period, as defined. 

    Limits facilitators' ability to enter into a vehicle sharing agreement to shared vehicle drivers that have a valid driver's license for the operation of the shared vehicle (or specified criteria for nonresidents). Establishes recordkeeping requirements for facilitators regarding shared vehicles' driver's and other anticipated operator's licensing.

    Places sole responsibility of shared vehicle equipment on the facilitator put in or on the vehicle to monitor or facilitates the vehicle's use, with required indemnification of the shared vehicle owner and the right to seek indemnification from the shared vehicle driver for loss or damage during the vehicle sharing period. 

    Requires a facilitator to verify there are no outstanding safety recalls prior to a shared vehicle owner making the shared vehicle available through the facilitator, and requires giving notice of this requirement to a shared vehicle owner. Details required actions for when a shared vehicle owner has received actual notice of a safety reclass on a shared vehicle, including not making the shared vehicle available or removing the shared vehicle's availability through the facilitator. 

    Establishes recordkeeping requirements for facilitators regarding the use of a shared vehicle, which must be provided to the shared vehicle owner, the owner's insurer, or the shared vehicle driver's insurer upon request. Requires records to be maintained to align with applicable statutes of limitations for personal injury actions.

    Requires facilitators to be permitted by the Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) before operating; sets a $5,000 application and annual renewal fee. Requires the DMV to prescribe the form of the permit and renewal applications, with specified required information including proof of required insurance. Allows DMV to retain the fees collected and use the funds for its operations. 

    Enacts GS 58-33-17.1, authorizing the Commissioner of Insurance to issue a facilitator a limited license authorizing the licensee to act as an agent of any insurer authorized to write the kinds of insurance relevant to the use of shared vehicles. Sets limited license qualifications to include a written, signed application with a signed and affirmed certification by the insurer that is to be named in the limited license of the applicant's trustworthiness and competency and that the insurer will appoint the applicant to act as its agent in reference to the specified types of insurance if the license is issued. Authorizes the Commissioner to take disciplinary action on the license and impose further penalties, subject to notice and hearing requirements, for violations of the statute. Identifies four kinds of insurance the limited licensee is authorized to act as an agent for the insurer in connection with the use of shared vehicles, including excess liability insurance that provides coverage to the licensee and shared vehicle drivers in excess of the standard liability limits provided in its vehicle sharing agreement, and accident or health insurance that provides coverage to shared vehicle drivers and other occupants for accidental death or dismemberment and medical expenses results from an accident during the vehicle sharing period. Restricts policy issuance to vehicle sharing agreements that do not exceed 30 consecutive days and conditions issuance on the licensee's satisfaction of specified written notice requirements of the prospective shared vehicle drivers, and the provision of evidence of coverage to a shared vehicle driver who elects purchase. Provides for exercise of the licensee's rights by salaried employee of the licensee, under supervision. Requires facilitators to conducts training programs, subject to Commissioner approval, regarding instruction on the kinds of insurance specified and acknowledgements required to a prospective shared vehicle driver. Deems licensees subject to Article, except they are not required to treat premiums collected from shared vehicle drivers purchasing insurance when sharing vehicles as funds received in a fiduciary capacity so long as the insurer consented that premiums need not be segregated and the charges are itemized but not billed to the shared vehicle driver separately from the charges of the shared vehicle. Bars licensees from advertising, representing, or holding themselves out as licensed insurance agents or brokers. 

    Effective July 1, 2021.