New York auto insurers will find it easier to defer or waive the mandatory photo inspection and to store the records under rules proposed by the Insurance Department on Dec. 12. If the department adopts the proposals, insurance producers and clients will have more time to get the inspections done, and in some cases may be able to dispense with the inspections altogether. The result may be that fewer drivers will endure physical damage coverage suspensions due to failure to get an inspection.
The rules increase the permissible period for an insurer to defer the inspection from five calendar days to five business days. They also allow insurers to consider waiving more inspections. Under current rules, an insurer can consider waiving inspection of a vehicle that is replacing a vehicle continuously insured with the same company for at least four years, or of a vehicle that the client is adding to a policy written with the same insurer for four years. The proposed rule would lower that time requirement to two years.
The proposed regulations, published in the Dec. 12 issue of New York State Register, also clarify the rules regarding the use of digital photography, allow for the use of different storage media, and introduce requirements for securely maintaining and storing inspection reports and photos. Insurers will have the ability to outsource report storage to third-party firms.
The public has 45 days from the date of publication to comment on the proposed changes. The department has not scheduled a hearing on them.