MAP Coverage & License Suspension

    Posted by MAIA on Apr 30, 2020 8:50:42 AM

    This question was answered based upon current rules, regulations & statutes in effect on April 27, 2020
     
    QUESTION

    May I ask a question, please, about the MAP?
    If an insured is driving on a suspended license, are any of his coverages voided? We have an insured whose license was suspended and his reinstatement hearing, scheduled for March 17th, was postponed due to COVID-19. Who knows when those hearings will resume and, my guess is, he is driving every day.

    Thank you and please stay well.

    ANSWER

    Irene Morrill:  Hmmmm.

    The insurance company could cancel the policy ….

    We can cancel all or any part of this policy including your Compulsory Insurance if:

    1. You have not paid your premiums.

    2. We find that you were responsible fro fraud or material misrepresentation when you applied for this policy or any extension or renewal of it.

    3. The driver's license or auto registration of you, or any person who resides in your household and usually operates an auto insured under this policy, has been under suspension or revocations during the policy period.

    There is a provision in the cancellation provision that states:

    If the driver's license or auto registration of anyone residing in your household who usually operates your auto has been under suspension or revocation during the policy period, we may suspend coverage for that person under any of the Optional Insurance Parts of the policy.  We may also reduce the limits available for that person under Bodily Injury Caused By An Uninsured Auto (Part 3), Damage To Someone Else's Property (Part 4) to the minimum limits we are required to sell.

    But the way this is worded it talks about someone OTHER than the named insured …hmmmmmmmmm.

    Sending this to Kathy Cormier, CPPL, Member Relations Advocate …
    Kathy …does this suspension provision apply to the “you” or just other drivers…..

    What say you?

    Agent:  It dawned on me, over the weekend, that our insured also drives frequently on company business and, thus, creates a Non-Owned exposure. I read the Commercial Auto Form (CA 00 01 10 01) and cannot find an exclusion or coverage limitation for an employee driving on a suspended license. Are you aware of any?

    Kathy Cormier:  I would tell him NOT to drive...the suspension would still be active and would make matters worse if pulled over.

    Here is what I have on suspensions:  https://www.mass.gov/info-details/rmv-covid-19-information#suspension-hearings-

    Suspension Hearings

    Due to the agency’s ongoing COVID-19 (coronavirus) response, suspension hearings will be conducted by telephone.

    You must report to a designated RMV Service Center to begin this process. Applicants requiring interpretation services are responsible for supplying this service.  You are limited to one hearing on a particular suspension or revocation.  You have the right to be represented by counsel or by any other responsible adult, but the applicant must accompany the representative at the time of the hearing. Please note that the RMV does not provide copy service. Have your copies ready ahead of time. Original documents will NOT be returned. During your hearing, it will be discussed whether further documents are required, and how to return those to us.  For a list of Hearing locations, refer to the RMV Service Center section above.

    Preparation:

    On the day of your hearing:

    While in line, you will be provided with an entry ticket based on a first come, first served basis. If you do not receive an entry ticket, then there may be more hearings in the afternoon, and it is your option to return to register to speak by phone with a Hearing Officer.

    Application:

    • Once inside, you will be given an application to complete.
      • Make sure your application has been fully completed and all copied documents added. The RMV does NOT provide copy service, so ensure that you have made copies for yourself.
      • The RMV representative shall retain your application and documents. You then exit the building.
      • The Hearings Officer will collect the applications submitted and review it in advance of your telephonic hearing. 
    • Your hearing may require specific documentation. The Hearings Officer may need to spend time researching and retrieving documentation as it relates to your case. In some cases, they will need to request documentation from another agency or organization and wait for the response, which takes time.

    What do I need if my case is successful?

    • If your case is successful, you may need to apply or re-apply for a driver’s license or learner’s permit at a Service Center. In both of these circumstances, you will need to prove lawful presence as part of the license reinstatement process. Please refer to the document checklist at mass.gov/id which outlines the acceptable forms of lawful presence documentation.

    Wait times:

    • It is not possible to accurately predict your wait time. Some hearings take longer than others due to the many complex issues that can affect the suspension of a license or vehicle registration. 

    Payment of Fees:

    • If the Hearing Officer determines that a fee is due, you have 3 options to make payment:
      1. Pay the fee online at Mass.Gov/RMV.
      2. Call the Contact Center at 857-368-8000 to provide payment over the phone.
      3. Visit an RMV Service Center for counter service.

    National Safety Council (NSC) Class Requirement Information

    • The National Safety Council (NSC) has cancelled all in-person classes through Sunday, May 31, 2020.
    • The RMV and NSC have developed an alternative way to deliver the statutorily required safety content outside of a classroom. 
    • An online class is now available for you to take as of April 6, 2020.  Your online course participation will count as your in-person class requirement.
    • Individuals scheduled for a class through May 31, 2020 should expect to receive communication directly from NSC, via emails and automated phone calls, on their specific next steps for online course completion.
    • For anyone with a deadline to complete an NSC course between March 1, 2020 and April 30, 2020 the RMV has provided an additional 90 days to complete the NSC requirement.
    • You may check your license status by accessing your profile at Mass.Gov/RMV to determine your current license status.  
    • The National Safety Council website contains additional information on how to register for the online course.

    Irene Morrill:  The policy as written by ISO/AIB has no exclusion … but … as Kathy responded …getting caught will make things worse for him

    This document is not a legal opinion and should not be relied upon as such. The intent of this document is to provide a general background regarding the topic or topics discussed, not to provide legal advice. Producers and agencies should consult an attorney regarding specific situations and specific questions with respect to the topic or topics covered in this document. Neither the Massachusetts Association of Insurance Agents, Number One Insurance Agency nor any of its employees shall be responsible for any errors or omissions regarding any statements made in this document, nor any errors or omissions regarding any statutes, regulations, court rules, and/or any other government documents cited in this document.

    Topics: Registry, 2020

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