senate Bill S4847A

2011-2012 Legislative Session

Enacts provisions to reduce the incidence of motor vehicle insurance fraud

download bill text pdf

Sponsored By

Archive: Last Bill Status - In Committee


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor

do you support this bill?

Actions

view actions (18)
Assembly Actions - Lowercase
Senate Actions - UPPERCASE
Jun 21, 2012 recommitted to rules
ordered to third reading cal.1458
committee discharged and committed to rules
Jun 20, 2012 print number 4847b
amend and recommit to codes
Mar 19, 2012 reported and committed to codes
Jan 30, 2012 print number 4847a
amend and recommit to insurance
Jan 04, 2012 referred to insurance
returned to senate
died in assembly
Jun 06, 2011 referred to insurance
delivered to assembly
passed senate
May 11, 2011 advanced to third reading
May 10, 2011 2nd report cal.
May 09, 2011 1st report cal.554
Apr 27, 2011 referred to insurance

Votes

view votes

Jun 21, 2012 - Rules committee Vote

S4847B
23
0
committee
23
Aye
0
Nay
2
Aye with Reservations
0
Absent
0
Excused
0
Abstained
show committee vote details

Mar 19, 2012 - Insurance committee Vote

S4847A
18
0
committee
18
Aye
0
Nay
0
Aye with Reservations
0
Absent
0
Excused
0
Abstained
show Insurance committee vote details

May 9, 2011 - Insurance committee Vote

S4847
13
1
committee
13
Aye
1
Nay
4
Aye with Reservations
0
Absent
0
Excused
0
Abstained
show committee vote details

Bill Amendments

Original
A
B (Active)
Original
A
B (Active)

Co-Sponsors

S4847 - Bill Details

Current Committee:
Law Section:
Insurance Law
Laws Affected:
Amd §§401, 405 & 2133, Ins L; amd §§170.10, 170.15, 176.05 & 176.15, add §175.50, Pen L; add §201-a, amd §§401 & 502, V & T L

S4847 - Bill Texts

view summary

Grants the superintendent of financial services authority to investigate fraudulent activities, such as motor vehicle operators who drive with no insurance coverage, and those who misrepresent their principal place of residence or where their motor vehicle is principally garaged and operated; authorizes such superintendent to accept reports of suspected fraudulent insurance actions; requires insurance companies and self-insurers to report incidents of insurance fraud to the department of financial services; includes within the class D felony of forgery in the second degree, the forgery of a certificate of insurance or an insurance identification card; includes within the class C felony of forgery in the first degree, the forgery of 10 or more written instruments; includes within the class E felony of insurance fraud in the fourth degree, the operation of a motor vehicle in this state when the vehicle is insured in another state, but it is actually garaged in this state or the owner principally resides in this state; requires applicants for motor vehicle registrations and driver's licenses to provide the department of motor vehicles with the address of their principal place of residence.

view sponsor memo
BILL NUMBER:S4847

TITLE OF BILL:

An act
to amend the insurance law,
the penal law,
and the vehicle and
traffic law, in relation to
insurance fraud

PURPOSE:

The purpose of this bill is reduce the incidence of auto insurance
fraud including fraud committed by those who misrepresent where they
live, operate their automobile, and garage such vehicle for insurance
coverage purposes. By misrepresenting where such automobile operators
truly live and operate their motor vehicle, these persons obtain
inappropriate reductions in their auto insurance premium rates and
such costs are shifted to other law abiding automobile owners.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:

Section 1: Adds a new Insurance Law section 401(d) to explicitly
expand the authority of the superintendent of Insurance, under the
Insurance Fraud prevention Article, to investigate fraudulent
activities with regard to motor vehicle operators who have not
secured automobile insurance coverage or who misrepresent the
principle place where such automobiles are garaged and operated.

Section 2: Amends Insurance Law section 405(a) to authorize the
Insurance Frauds Bureau to accept reports of suspected fraudulent
insurance transactions from any self insurer with regard to health
insurance coverage, motor vehicle liability coverage, or workers
compensation coverage.

Section 3: Amends Insurance Law section 2133 to expand the scope of
prohibition for any insurance company, insurance agent, broker, or
other person who knowingly possesses, transfers or uses a forged
insurance identification card to also include other false insurance
documents which purports to evince insurance coverage when it is not
in effect or is at limits less than those stated on the document.

Section 4: Amends Penal Law section 170.10 to add a new (6) to the
list of documents that the forgery of is considered to be forgery in
the Second Degree. The new document that, if forged, would be forgery
in the Second Degree are certificates of insurance or an insurance
identification card.

Section 5: Amends Penal Law section 170.15 (Forgery in the First
Degree) to include as forgery in the first degree, the fraudulent
making, completion, or alteration of 10 or more written instruments
such as certificates of insurance or insurance identification cards.

Section 6: Adds a new Penal Law section 175.50 to make it a class E
felony to offer a false application for motor vehicle insurance or


registration. Under this provision, anyone who submits to the
Department of Motor Vehicles or to an auto insurer (to obtain an auto
insurance policy or insurance identification card) any document that
contains a false statement or information with regard to where such
applicant resides or where such applicant's motor vehicle is garaged
or operated and such document is used directly or indirectly to
register an automobile shall be a class E felony.

Section 7: Amends Penal Law section 176.05 which defines the term
"insurance fraud". Under this bill, the term "insurance fraud" is
expanded to include any false document used to secure either
insurance coverage, file an insurance policy claim, or obtain payment
for personal lines insurance coverages (i.e. auto and homeowners
insurance). Under current law, only false documents that are used to
secure commercial lines policies or money for claims against a
commercial lines policy (i.e general liability or business property
policies) are considered to be insurance fraud. This bill expands the
types of insurance policies that persons cannot lie about to obtain
coverage or claims payment to include personal lines coverages such
as motor vehicle liability or homeowners insurance.

Section 8: Amends Penal Law section 176.15 to expand the scope of
insurance fraud in the 4th degree to include the operation of a motor
vehicle on a public highway when such operator is insured by a policy
issued under the laws of another state, but such person in fact
principally lives and garages their vehicle in New York.

Section 9: A new Vehicle & Traffic Law section 201-a is added to give
law enforcement personnel access to any individual's street address
provided to the Department of Motor Vehicles to register a motor
vehicle in this state or to obtain a driver's license in this State.
This information can be used to ensure that those who submit
information to the Department submit accurate information of their
residence and where they operate and garage their motor vehicle for
auto insurance premium rating purposes.

Section 10: Amends Vehicle & Traffic Law section 401(1) to require
that all those who file an application to register an automobile in
New York must provide their street address where they reside if such
person uses a Post Office box for their location of residence. The
purpose of this provision is to curtail those that submit fraudulent
information on where such applicants truly reside.

Section 11: Amends Vehicle & Traffic Law section 502(1) to require
that all those who file an application for a driver's license must
provide their street address where they reside if such person uses a
Post Office box for their location of residence.

JUSTIFICATION:

The purpose of this bill is to address the ever increasing incidence
of auto insurance fraud in this state. More particularly, this bill
seeks to address insurance fraud that is perpetrated against those
law abiding operators of motor vehicles that accurately and
truthfully disclose where they reside and operate and garage their
vehicles, regardless of where they live. Some who live in high auto
insurance rate areas, such as the New York City metropolitan area,


misrepresent where they live, garage and operate their automobiles
and fraudulently maintain that they live in low insurance premium
rate areas that are either up-state or out of state.

There is a prevalence of in-state residents misrepresenting their true
place of residence so that they can obtain much lower auto insurance
rates. Instead of disclosing their true address in high insurance
premium places such as, for example, Bronx or Kings Counties, they
state that they live in lower insurance premium rated territories
such as North Carolina, Pennsylvania, or upstate counties that have
much lower incidents of motor vehicle theft, car accidents and
judgments relegated to motor vehicle accidents. This issue was a
topic of a report released in 2006 by the State Commission on
Investigations. since 2006, the commission has sunsetted, however,
senator Klein is revising end updating this report. The new Report
"Auto Insurance Rate Evasion" was released in February 2011. This bill
implements many of the suggested changes contained in that Report.

This situation or rate evasion, while artificially lowering the
insurance rates of those who fraudulently do not disclose their true
residential address, substantially increases the insurance premiums
paid by those who truthfully disclose their actual place of residence
and where they operated and garaged their cars. This hill should
bring more equity to those who purchase auto insurance coverages in
this state and ensure that everyone pays their fair share for auto
insurance coverages that matches their actuarial risk of potential
physical damage or theft of their automobiles, risk of personal
injury or liability exposure due to judgments obtain in local courts.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
Similar to S.988 of 2011
Similar to S.7091 of 2010 - Referred to Insurance

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:
None.

EFFECTIVE DATE:
The same date as the merger of the Insurance and
Banking Departments.

view full text
download pdf
                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                  4847

                       2011-2012 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                             April 27, 2011
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sen.  KLEIN  -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
  printed to be committed to the Committee on Insurance

AN ACT to amend the insurance law, the penal law, and  the  vehicle  and
  traffic law, in relation to insurance fraud

  THE  PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section 1. Section 401 of the insurance law is amended by adding a new
subsection (d) to read as follows:
  (D) THE SUPERINTENDENT SHALL HAVE BROAD  AUTHORITY  PURSUANT  TO  THIS
CHAPTER  TO INVESTIGATE FRAUDULENT ACTIVITIES WITH REGARD TO MOTOR VEHI-
CLE DRIVERS THAT OPERATE AUTOMOBILES WITH  NO  INSURANCE  COVERAGE,  AND
MOTOR  VEHICLE  INSUREDS  WHO  MISREPRESENT  THE  PRINCIPAL  PLACE WHERE
INSURED MOTOR VEHICLES ARE GARAGED AND OPERATED. OPERATING  MOTOR  VEHI-
CLES WITHOUT PROPER INSURANCE IN VIOLATION OF ARTICLE SIX OF THE VEHICLE
AND  TRAFFIC  LAW  IS A SIGNIFICANT DANGER TO THE PUBLIC BECAUSE DRIVERS
ARE UNABLE TO COMPENSATE INDIVIDUALS FOR PERSONAL  INJURIES,  DEATH  AND
PROPERTY  DAMAGE  THEY  INFLICT UPON OTHERS.  FURTHERMORE, MOTOR VEHICLE
INSUREDS WHO MISREPRESENT THE PRINCIPAL PLACE WHERE  SUCH  VEHICLES  ARE
GARAGED  AND  OPERATED  IMPROPERLY  SHIFT  THEIR HIGH LIABILITY EXPOSURE
COSTS TO OTHER MOTOR VEHICLE INSUREDS THAT DO NOT FACE SUCH HIGH LIABIL-
ITY RISK AND INSURANCE PREMIUM COSTS.
  S 2. Subsection (a) of section 405 of the insurance law, as amended by
section 7 of part A of chapter 62 of the laws of  2011,  is  amended  to
read as follows:
  (a)  Any  person  licensed or registered pursuant to the provisions of
this chapter, and any person engaged in the  business  of  insurance  or
life  settlement  in this state who is exempted from compliance with the
licensing requirements of this chapter, including  the  state  insurance
fund  of  this state, who has reason to believe that an insurance trans-
action or life settlement act may be fraudulent, or has knowledge that a
fraudulent insurance transaction or fraudulent life  settlement  act  is

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD05004-04-1

S. 4847                             2

about  to take place, or has taken place shall, within thirty days after
determination by such person that the transaction appears to be  fraudu-
lent, send to the superintendent on a form prescribed by the superinten-
dent, the information requested by the form and such additional informa-
tion  relative  to  the factual circumstances of the transaction and the
parties involved as the superintendent may require.  The  superintendent
shall  accept  reports of suspected fraudulent insurance transactions or
fraudulent life settlement acts from any self insurer, including but not
limited to self insurers providing health insurance  coverage  or  those
defined  in  section  fifty  of the workers' compensation law, and shall
treat such reports as any other received pursuant to this section.   THE
SUPERINTENDENT  SHALL  ACCEPT  REPORTS OF SUSPECTED FRAUDULENT INSURANCE
TRANSACTIONS FROM ANY SELF INSURER INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED  TO,  SELF
INSURERS  PROVIDING  HEALTH  INSURANCE  COVERAGE,  THOSE PROVIDING MOTOR
VEHICLE LIABILITY INSURANCE OR THOSE DEFINED IN  SECTION  FIFTY  OF  THE
WORKERS'  COMPENSATION  LAW,  AND  SHALL TREAT SUCH REPORTS AS ANY OTHER
RECEIVED PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION.
  S 3. Section 2133 of the insurance law, as amended by  chapter  77  of
the laws of 1994, is amended to read as follows:
  S  2133. [Forged] FALSE INSURANCE DOCUMENTS AND FORGED insurance iden-
tification cards. Any  insurance  company,  insurance  agent,  insurance
broker  or  other person who or which, personally or by the action of an
employee or agent, KNOWINGLY possesses, transfers or uses: (A) ANY DOCU-
MENT WHICH PURPORTS TO EVINCE INSURANCE COVERAGE WHEN SUCH  COVERAGE  IS
NOT  IN  EFFECT  OR IS IN EFFECT AT LIMITS LESS THAN THOSE STATED IN THE
DOCUMENT; OR (B) a forged insurance  identification  card  for  a  motor
vehicle, having knowledge, personally or through such employee or agent,
of  the  fact  that such insurance identification card, when issued, did
not actually represent an owner's policy of  liability  insurance  or  a
financial  security  bond  issued by an insurance company licensed to do
business in this state covering the motor  vehicle  identified  on  such
card, shall be liable for payment to the people of this state of a civil
penalty  in  a sum not exceeding one thousand dollars for the first such
violation and a sum not exceeding five thousand dollars for each  subse-
quent  violation.  For  the  purposes  of  this section the term "forged
insurance identification card" means a written insurance  identification
card  which  has  been  falsely made, completed or altered, and the term
"falsely made, completed or altered" shall have the same meaning as  set
forth in section 170.00 of the penal law.
  S  4.  Subdivision 5 of section 170.10 of the penal law is amended and
a new subdivision 6 is added to read as follows:
  5. A prescription of a duly licensed physician or other person author-
ized to issue the same for any drug or any instrument or device used  in
the  taking  or  administering  of  drugs  for  which  a prescription is
required by law[.]; OR
  6. A CERTIFICATE OF INSURANCE OR AN INSURANCE IDENTIFICATION CARD,  AS
DEFINED IN SECTION THREE HUNDRED ELEVEN OF THE VEHICLE AND TRAFFIC LAW.
  S 5. Section 170.15 of the penal law is amended to read as follows:
S 170.15 Forgery in the first degree.
  A person is guilty of forgery in the first degree when, with intent to
defraud,  deceive  or injure another, he OR SHE falsely makes, completes
or alters [a]:
  1. TEN OR MORE WRITTEN INSTRUMENTS; OR
  2. A written instrument which is or purports to be, or which is calcu-
lated to become or to represent if completed:

S. 4847                             3

  [1.] (A) Part of an issue of money, stamps, securities or other  valu-
able instruments issued by a government or governmental instrumentality;
or
  [2.] (B) Part of an issue of stock, bonds or other instruments repres-
enting  interests in or claims against a corporate or other organization
or its property.
  Forgery in the first degree is a class C felony.
  S 6. The penal law is amended by adding a new section 175.50  to  read
as follows:
S 175.50 OFFERING  A  FALSE  APPLICATION  FOR MOTOR VEHICLE INSURANCE OR
           REGISTRATION.
  A PERSON IS GUILTY OF OFFERING A FALSE APPLICATION FOR  MOTOR  VEHICLE
INSURANCE OR REGISTRATION WHEN KNOWING THAT ANY DOCUMENT HE OR SHE FILES
WITH  THE DEPARTMENT OF MOTOR VEHICLES OR AN INSURER PROVIDING LIABILITY
INSURANCE FOR A MOTOR VEHICLE CONTAINS A FALSE STATEMENT OR FALSE INFOR-
MATION WITH REGARD TO WHERE HE OR SHE RESIDES OR WHERE HIS OR HER  MOTOR
VEHICLE IS GARAGED AND OPERATED.
  OFFERING  A FALSE APPLICATION FOR MOTOR VEHICLE INSURANCE OR REGISTRA-
TION IS A CLASS E FELONY.
  S 7. Subdivision 1 of section 176.05 of the penal law, as  amended  by
chapter  635  of  the laws of 1996 and as designated by chapter 2 of the
laws of 1998, is amended to read as follows:
  1. A fraudulent insurance act is committed by any person who, knowing-
ly and with intent to defraud  presents,  causes  to  be  presented,  or
prepares with knowledge  or belief that it will be presented to or by an
insurer,  self insurer, or purported insurer, or purported self insurer,
or any agent thereof, any written statement as part of,  or  in  support
of,  an  application  for the issuance of, or the rating of a commercial
insurance policy, or certificate  or  evidence  of  self  insurance  for
commercial  OR  PERSONAL insurance or commercial OR PERSONAL self insur-
ance, or a claim for payment or other benefit pursuant to  an  insurance
policy  or  self  insurance program for commercial or personal insurance
which he knows to: (i) contain materially false  information  concerning
any  fact material thereto; or (ii) conceal, for the purpose of mislead-
ing, information concerning any fact material thereto.
  S 8. Section 176.15 of the penal law, as amended by chapter 515 of the
laws of 1986, is amended to read as follows:
S 176.15 Insurance fraud in the fourth degree.
  A person is guilty of insurance fraud in the  fourth  degree  when  he
[commits] OR SHE:
  1.  COMMITS  a  fraudulent insurance act and thereby wrongfully takes,
obtains or withholds, or attempts to wrongfully take, obtain or withhold
property with a value in excess of one thousand dollars; OR
  2. OPERATES A MOTOR VEHICLE ON A PUBLIC HIGHWAY, WHEN SUCH MOTOR VEHI-
CLE IS INSURED BY A POLICY ISSUED UNDER THE LAWS OF ANOTHER STATE,  WHEN
SUCH  PERSON  MAINTAINS  HIS OR HER PRINCIPAL RESIDENCE IN THIS STATE OR
SUCH MOTOR VEHICLE IS PRINCIPALLY GARAGED IN THIS STATE, AND SUCH INSUR-
ANCE POLICY WAS ISSUED UPON ANY WRITTEN OR ORAL STATEMENT BY SUCH PERSON
THAT HE OR SHE PRINCIPALLY RESIDES IN SUCH  OTHER  STATE  OR  THAT  SUCH
MOTOR VEHICLE IS PRINCIPALLY GARAGED IN SUCH OTHER STATE.
  Insurance fraud in the fourth degree is a class E felony.
  S  9.  The  vehicle and traffic law is amended by adding a new section
201-a to read as follows:
  S 201-A.  ACCESS  TO  INFORMATION.  THE  DEPARTMENT  SHALL  ALLOW  LAW
ENFORCEMENT PERSONNEL ACCESS TO ANY INDIVIDUAL'S STREET ADDRESS PROVIDED

S. 4847                             4

PURSUANT  TO  PARAGRAPH B OF SUBDIVISION ONE OF SECTION FOUR HUNDRED ONE
AND SUBDIVISION ONE OF SECTION FIVE HUNDRED TWO OF THIS CHAPTER.
  S  10.  Paragraph b of subdivision 1 of section 401 of the vehicle and
traffic law, as amended by chapter 222 of the laws of 1996,  is  amended
to read as follows:
  b.  Every  owner  of a motor vehicle which shall be operated or driven
upon the public highways  of  this  state  shall,  except  as  otherwise
expressly  provided, cause to be presented, by mail or otherwise, to the
office or a branch office of the commissioner, or to any  agent  of  the
commissioner,  constituted  as  provided in this chapter, an application
for registration addressed to the commissioner, and on  a  blank  to  be
prepared  under  the  direction of and furnished by the commissioner for
that purpose, containing: (a) a brief description of the  motor  vehicle
to be registered, including the name and factory number of such vehicle,
and  such  other facts as the commissioner shall require; (b) the weight
of the vehicle upon which the registration fee is based if  the  fee  is
based  on  weight;  (c)  the name and residence, including county of the
owner of such motor vehicle, PROVIDED THAT IF THE APPLICANT USES A  POST
OFFICE BOX WHEN PROVIDING A RESIDENCE ADDRESS, SUCH APPLICANT SHALL ALSO
PROVIDE  THE  STREET  ADDRESS  AT  WHICH HE OR SHE RESIDES; (d) provided
that, if such motor vehicle is used or to be used  as  an  omnibus,  the
applicant  also  shall  so  certify,  and in the case of an omnibus also
certify as to the seating capacity, and if the omnibus is to be operated
wholly within a municipality pursuant to a franchise other than a  fran-
chise  express  or  implied  in  articles  of incorporation upon certain
streets designated in such franchise, those facts shall also  be  certi-
fied,  and  a  certified copy of such franchise furnished to the commis-
sioner; (e) provided, that, if such motor vehicle is an altered  livery,
the  applicant  shall  so  furnish a certified copy of the length of the
center panel of such vehicle, provided, however, that  the  commissioner
shall  require  such  proof, as he OR SHE may determine is necessary, in
the application for registration and provided  further,  if  the  center
panel of such vehicle exceeds one hundred inches, the commissioner shall
require  proof  that  such  vehicle is in compliance with all applicable
federal and state motor vehicle safety standards;  and  (f)  such  addi-
tional  facts  or evidence as the commissioner may require in connection
with the application for registration. Every owner of  a  trailer  shall
also  make application for the registration thereof in the manner herein
provided for an application to  register  a  motor  vehicle,  but  shall
contain a statement showing the manufacturer's number or other identifi-
cation satisfactory to the commissioner and no number plate for a trail-
er  issued  under  the  provisions  of subdivision three of section four
hundred two of this [chapter] ARTICLE shall be transferred  to  or  used
upon  any  other  trailer than the one for which number plate is issued.
The commissioner shall require proof, in the application  for  registra-
tion,  or  otherwise, as such commissioner may determine, that the motor
vehicle for which registration is applied for is  equipped  with  lights
conforming  in  all respects to the requirements of this chapter, and no
motor vehicle shall be registered unless it shall appear by such  proofs
that such motor vehicle is equipped with proper lights as aforesaid. The
said application shall contain or be accompanied by such evidence of the
ownership  of  the  motor vehicle described in the application as may be
required by the commissioner or his OR HER agent and which, with respect
to new vehicles, shall include, unless otherwise  specifically  provided
by  the  commissioner,  the manufacturer's statement of origin. Applica-
tions received by an agent of the commissioner shall be forwarded to the

S. 4847                             5

commissioner as he OR SHE shall direct for filing.  No  application  for
registration  shall be accepted unless the applicant is at least sixteen
years of age AND HAS SIGNED SUCH APPLICATION ATTESTING TO THE TRUTH  AND
VERACITY OF THE FACTS STATED THEREIN.
  S  11. Subdivision 1 of section 502 of the vehicle and traffic law, as
amended by section 2 of part CC of chapter 58 of the laws  of  2011,  is
amended to read as follows:
  1.  Application for license.  Application for a driver's license shall
be made to the commissioner.  The fee prescribed by law may be submitted
with such application. The applicant shall furnish such proof of identi-
ty, age, ADDRESS OF HIS OR HER RESIDENCE and fitness as may be  required
by the commissioner. WHEN PROVIDING HIS OR HER ADDRESS OF RESIDENCE, THE
APPLICANT  SHALL  PROVIDE THE STREET ADDRESS AT WHICH HE OR SHE RESIDES.
EACH APPLICANT SHALL SIGN HIS OR HER APPLICATION ATTESTING TO THE  TRUTH
AND  VERACITY  OF  THE  FACTS  STATED THEREIN. The commissioner may also
provide that the application procedure shall include  the  taking  of  a
photo  image  or  images  of  the applicant in accordance with rules and
regulations prescribed by the commissioner. In addition, the commission-
er also shall require that the applicant provide his or her social secu-
rity number and provide space on the application so that  the  applicant
may register in the New York state organ and tissue donor registry under
section  forty-three  hundred ten of the public health law. In addition,
an applicant for a  commercial  driver's  license  who  will  operate  a
commercial  motor vehicle in interstate commerce shall certify that such
applicant meets the requirements to operate a commercial motor  vehicle,
as  set  forth in public law 99-570, title XII, and title 49 of the code
of federal regulations, and all regulations promulgated  by  the  United
States  secretary of transportation under the hazardous materials trans-
portation act. In addition,  an  applicant  for  a  commercial  driver's
license shall submit a medical certificate at such intervals as required
by  the  federal  motor  carrier safety improvement act of 1999 and Part
383.71(h) of title 49 of the code of  federal  regulations  relating  to
medical  certification  and  in a manner prescribed by the commissioner.
For purposes of this section and sections five hundred  three  and  five
hundred ten-a of this title, the term "medical certificate" shall mean a
form  substantially  in  compliance  with  the  form  set  forth in Part
391.43(h) of title 49 of the code of federal regulations.  Upon a deter-
mination that the holder of a commercial driver's license has  made  any
false  statement,  with respect to the application for such license, the
commissioner shall revoke such license.
  S 12. This act shall take effect on the same  date  and  in  the  same
manner  as  part  A  of  chapter 62 of the laws of 2011 takes effect, as
provided in subdivision (a) of section 114 of such part,  provided  that
sections  nine, ten and eleven of this act shall take effect on the same
date and in the same manner as section 2 of part CC of chapter 58 of the
laws of 2011 takes effect.

Co-Sponsors

S4847A - Bill Details

Current Committee:
Law Section:
Insurance Law
Laws Affected:
Amd §§401, 405 & 2133, Ins L; amd §§170.10, 170.15, 176.05 & 176.15, add §175.50, Pen L; add §201-a, amd §§401 & 502, V & T L

S4847A - Bill Texts

view summary

Grants the superintendent of financial services authority to investigate fraudulent activities, such as motor vehicle operators who drive with no insurance coverage, and those who misrepresent their principal place of residence or where their motor vehicle is principally garaged and operated; authorizes such superintendent to accept reports of suspected fraudulent insurance actions; requires insurance companies and self-insurers to report incidents of insurance fraud to the department of financial services; includes within the class D felony of forgery in the second degree, the forgery of a certificate of insurance or an insurance identification card; includes within the class C felony of forgery in the first degree, the forgery of 10 or more written instruments; includes within the class E felony of insurance fraud in the fourth degree, the operation of a motor vehicle in this state when the vehicle is insured in another state, but it is actually garaged in this state or the owner principally resides in this state; requires applicants for motor vehicle registrations and driver's licenses to provide the department of motor vehicles with the address of their principal place of residence.

view sponsor memo
BILL NUMBER:S4847A

TITLE OF BILL:
An act
to amend the insurance law,
the penal law,
and the vehicle and
traffic law, in relation to
insurance fraud

PURPOSE:
The purpose of this bill is reduce the incidence of auto insurance
fraud including fraud committed by those who misrepresent where they
live, operate their automobile, and garage such vehicle for insurance
coverage purposes. By misrepresenting where such automobile operators
truly live and operate their motor vehicle, these persons obtain
inappropriate reductions in their auto insurance premium rates and
such costs are shifted to other law abiding automobile owners.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
Section 1: Adds a new Insurance Law section 401(d) to explicitly
expand the authority of the superintendent of Insurance, under the
Insurance Fraud prevention Article, to investigate fraudulent
activities with regard to motor vehicle operators who have not
secured automobile insurance coverage or who misrepresent the
principle place where such automobiles are garaged and operated.

Section 2: Amends Insurance Law section 405(a) to authorize the
Insurance Frauds Bureau to accept reports of suspected fraudulent
insurance transactions from any self insurer with regard to health
insurance coverage, motor vehicle liability coverage, or workers
compensation coverage.

Section 3: Amends Insurance Law section 2133 to expand the scope of
prohibition for any insurance company, insurance agent, broker, or
other person who knowingly possesses, transfers or uses a forged
insurance identification card to also include other false insurance
documents which purports to evince insurance coverage when it is not
in effect or is at limits less than those stated on the document.

Section 4: Amends Penal Law section 170.10 to add a new (6) to the
list of documents that the forgery of is considered to be forgery in
the Second Degree. The new document that, if forged, would be forgery
in the Second Degree are certificates of insurance or an insurance
identification card.

Section 5: Amends Penal Law section 170.15 (Forgery in the First Degree)
to include as forgery in the first degree, the fraudulent making,
completion, or alteration of 10 or more written instruments such as
certificates of insurance or insurance identification cards.

Section 6: Adds a new Penal Law section 175.50 to make it a class E
felony to offer a false application for motor vehicle insurance or
registration. Under this provision, anyone who submits to the
Department of Motor Vehicles or to an auto insurer (to obtain an auto
insurance policy or insurance identification card) any document that
contains a false statement or information with regard to where such
applicant resides or where such applicant's motor vehicle is garaged
or operated and such document is used directly or indirectly to
register an automobile shall be a class E felony.

Section 7: Amends Penal Law section 176.05 which defines the term
"insurance fraud". Under this bill, the term "insurance fraud" is
expanded to include any false document used to secure either
insurance coverage, file an insurance policy claim, or obtain payment
for personal lines insurance coverages {i.e. auto and homeowners
insurance}. Under current law, only false documents that are used to
secure commercial lines policies or money for claims against a
commercial lines policy (i.e general liability or business property
policies) are considered to be insurance fraud. This bill expands the
types of insurance policies that persons cannot lie about to obtain
coverage or claims payment to include personal lines coverages such
as motor vehicle liability or homeowners insurance.

Section 8: Amends Penal Law section 176.15 to expand the scope of
insurance fraud in the 4th degree to include the operation of a motor
vehicle on a public highway when such operator is insured by a policy
issued under the laws of another state, but such person in fact
principally lives and garages their vehicle in New York.

Section 9: A new Vehicle & Traffic Law section 201-a is added to give
law enforcement personnel access to any individual's street address
provided to the Department of Motor Vehicles to register a motor
vehicle in this state or to obtain a driver's license in this State.
This information can be used to ensure that those who submit
information to the Department submit accurate information of their
residence and where they operate and garage their motor vehicle for
auto insurance premium rating purposes.

Section 10: Amends Vehicle & Traffic Law section 401{1} to require
that all those who file an application to register an automobile in
New York must provide their street address where they reside if such
person uses a Post Office box for their location of residence. The
purpose of this provision is to curtail those that submit fraudulent
information on where such applicants truly reside.

Section 11: Amends Vehicle & Traffic Law section 502(1) to require
that all those who file an application for a driver's license must
provide their street address where they reside if such person uses a
Post Office box for their location of residence.

JUSTIFICATION:

The purpose of this bill is to address the ever increasing incidence
of auto insurance fraud in this state. More particularly, this bill
seeks to address insurance fraud that is perpetrated against those
law abiding operators of motor vehicles that accurately and
truthfully disclose where they reside and operate and garage their
vehicles, regardless of where they live. Some who live in high auto
insurance rate areas, such as the New York City metropolitan area,
misrepresent where they live, garage and operate their automobiles
and fraudulently maintain that they live in low insurance premium
rate areas that are either upstate or out of state.

There is a prevalence of in-state residents misrepresenting their true
place of residence so that they can obtain much lower auto insurance
rates. Instead of disclosing their true address in high insurance
premium places such as, for example, Bronx or Kings Counties, they
state that they live in lower insurance premium rated territories
such as North Carolina, Pennsylvania, or upstate counties that have
much lower incidents of motor vehicle theft, car accidents and
judgments relegated to motor vehicle accidents. This issue was a
topic of a report released in 2006 by the State Commission on
Investigations. since 2006, the commission has sunsetted, however,
senator Klein is revising end updating this report. The new Report
"Auto Insurance Rate Evasion" was released in February 2011. This
bill implements many of the suggested changes contained in that Report.

This situation or rate evasion, while artificially lowering the
insurance rates of those who fraudulently do not disclose their true
residential address, substantially increases the insurance premiums
paid by those who truthfully disclose their actual place of residence
and where they operated and garaged their cars. This hill should
bring more equity to those who purchase auto insurance coverages in
this state and ensure that everyone pays their fair share for auto
insurance coverages that matches their actuarial risk of potential
physical damage or theft of their automobiles, risk of personal
injury or liability exposure due to judgments obtain in local courts.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
Similar to S.988 of 2011
Similar to S.7091 of 2010 - Referred to Insurance

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:
None.

EFFECTIVE DATE:
Immediately.

view full text
download pdf
                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                 4847--A

                       2011-2012 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                             April 27, 2011
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sens. KLEIN, CARLUCCI, SAVINO, SQUADRON, VALESKY -- read
  twice and ordered printed, and when printed to  be  committed  to  the
  Committee on Insurance -- recommitted to the Committee on Insurance in
  accordance  with  Senate  Rule 6, sec. 8 -- committee discharged, bill
  amended, ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said  commit-
  tee

AN  ACT  to  amend the insurance law, the penal law, and the vehicle and
  traffic law, in relation to insurance fraud

  THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND  ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section 1. Section 401 of the insurance law is amended by adding a new
subsection (d) to read as follows:
  (D)  THE  SUPERINTENDENT  SHALL  HAVE BROAD AUTHORITY PURSUANT TO THIS
CHAPTER TO INVESTIGATE FRAUDULENT ACTIVITIES WITH REGARD TO MOTOR  VEHI-
CLE  DRIVERS  THAT  OPERATE  AUTOMOBILES WITH NO INSURANCE COVERAGE, AND
MOTOR VEHICLE  INSUREDS  WHO  MISREPRESENT  THE  PRINCIPAL  PLACE  WHERE
INSURED  MOTOR  VEHICLES ARE GARAGED AND OPERATED. OPERATING MOTOR VEHI-
CLES WITHOUT PROPER INSURANCE IN VIOLATION OF ARTICLE SIX OF THE VEHICLE
AND TRAFFIC LAW IS A SIGNIFICANT DANGER TO THE  PUBLIC  BECAUSE  DRIVERS
ARE  UNABLE  TO  COMPENSATE INDIVIDUALS FOR PERSONAL INJURIES, DEATH AND
PROPERTY DAMAGE THEY INFLICT UPON OTHERS.   FURTHERMORE,  MOTOR  VEHICLE
INSUREDS  WHO  MISREPRESENT  THE PRINCIPAL PLACE WHERE SUCH VEHICLES ARE
GARAGED AND OPERATED IMPROPERLY  SHIFT  THEIR  HIGH  LIABILITY  EXPOSURE
COSTS TO OTHER MOTOR VEHICLE INSUREDS THAT DO NOT FACE SUCH HIGH LIABIL-
ITY RISK AND INSURANCE PREMIUM COSTS.
  S 2. Subsection (a) of section 405 of the insurance law, as amended by
section  7  of  part  A of chapter 62 of the laws of 2011, is amended to
read as follows:
  (a) Any person licensed or registered pursuant to  the  provisions  of
this  chapter,  and  any  person engaged in the business of insurance or
life settlement in this state who is exempted from compliance  with  the

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD05004-08-2

S. 4847--A                          2

licensing  requirements  of  this chapter, including the state insurance
fund of this state, who has reason to believe that an  insurance  trans-
action or life settlement act may be fraudulent, or has knowledge that a
fraudulent  insurance  transaction  or fraudulent life settlement act is
about to take place, or has taken place shall, within thirty days  after
determination  by such person that the transaction appears to be fraudu-
lent, send to the superintendent on a form prescribed by the superinten-
dent, the information requested by the form and such additional informa-
tion relative to the factual circumstances of the  transaction  and  the
parties  involved  as the superintendent may require. The superintendent
shall accept reports of suspected fraudulent insurance  transactions  or
fraudulent life settlement acts from any self insurer, including but not
limited  to  self  insurers providing health insurance coverage or those
defined in section fifty of the workers'  compensation  law,  and  shall
treat  such reports as any other received pursuant to this section.  THE
SUPERINTENDENT SHALL ACCEPT REPORTS OF  SUSPECTED  FRAUDULENT  INSURANCE
TRANSACTIONS  FROM  ANY SELF INSURER INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, SELF
INSURERS PROVIDING HEALTH  INSURANCE  COVERAGE,  THOSE  PROVIDING  MOTOR
VEHICLE  LIABILITY  INSURANCE  OR  THOSE DEFINED IN SECTION FIFTY OF THE
WORKERS' COMPENSATION LAW, AND SHALL TREAT SUCH  REPORTS  AS  ANY  OTHER
RECEIVED PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION.
  S  3.  Section  2133 of the insurance law, as amended by chapter 77 of
the laws of 1994, is amended to read as follows:
  S 2133. [Forged] FALSE INSURANCE DOCUMENTS AND FORGED insurance  iden-
tification  cards.  Any  insurance  company,  insurance agent, insurance
broker or other person who or which, personally or by the action  of  an
employee or agent, KNOWINGLY possesses, transfers or uses: (A) ANY DOCU-
MENT  WHICH  PURPORTS TO EVINCE INSURANCE COVERAGE WHEN SUCH COVERAGE IS
NOT IN EFFECT OR IS IN EFFECT AT LIMITS LESS THAN THOSE  STATED  IN  THE
DOCUMENT;  OR  (B)  a  forged  insurance identification card for a motor
vehicle, having knowledge, personally or through such employee or agent,
of the fact that such insurance identification card,  when  issued,  did
not  actually  represent  an  owner's policy of liability insurance or a
financial security bond issued by an insurance company  licensed  to  do
business  in  this  state  covering the motor vehicle identified on such
card, shall be liable for payment to the people of this state of a civil
penalty in a sum not exceeding one thousand dollars for the  first  such
violation  and a sum not exceeding five thousand dollars for each subse-
quent violation. For the purposes  of  this  section  the  term  "forged
insurance  identification card" means a written insurance identification
card which has been falsely made, completed or  altered,  and  the  term
"falsely  made, completed or altered" shall have the same meaning as set
forth in section 170.00 of the penal law.
  S 4.  Subdivision 5 of section 170.10 of the penal law is amended  and
a new subdivision 6 is added to read as follows:
  5. A prescription of a duly licensed physician or other person author-
ized  to issue the same for any drug or any instrument or device used in
the taking or  administering  of  drugs  for  which  a  prescription  is
required by law[.]; OR
  6.  A CERTIFICATE OF INSURANCE OR AN INSURANCE IDENTIFICATION CARD, AS
DEFINED IN SECTION THREE HUNDRED ELEVEN OF THE VEHICLE AND TRAFFIC LAW.
  S 5. Section 170.15 of the penal law is amended to read as follows:
S 170.15 Forgery in the first degree.
  A person is guilty of forgery in the first degree when, with intent to
defraud, deceive or injure another, he OR SHE falsely  makes,  completes
or alters [a]:

S. 4847--A                          3

  1. TEN OR MORE WRITTEN INSTRUMENTS; OR
  2. A written instrument which is or purports to be, or which is calcu-
lated to become or to represent if completed:
  [1.]  (A) Part of an issue of money, stamps, securities or other valu-
able instruments issued by a government or governmental instrumentality;
or
  [2.] (B) Part of an issue of stock, bonds or other instruments repres-
enting interests in or claims against a corporate or other  organization
or its property.
  Forgery in the first degree is a class C felony.
  S  6.  The penal law is amended by adding a new section 175.50 to read
as follows:
S 175.50 OFFERING A FALSE APPLICATION FOR  MOTOR  VEHICLE  INSURANCE  OR
           REGISTRATION.
  A  PERSON  IS GUILTY OF OFFERING A FALSE APPLICATION FOR MOTOR VEHICLE
INSURANCE OR REGISTRATION WHEN KNOWING THAT ANY DOCUMENT HE OR SHE FILES
WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF MOTOR VEHICLES OR AN INSURER PROVIDING  LIABILITY
INSURANCE FOR A MOTOR VEHICLE CONTAINS A FALSE STATEMENT OR FALSE INFOR-
MATION  WITH REGARD TO WHERE HE OR SHE RESIDES OR WHERE HIS OR HER MOTOR
VEHICLE IS GARAGED AND OPERATED.
  OFFERING A FALSE APPLICATION FOR MOTOR VEHICLE INSURANCE OR  REGISTRA-
TION IS A CLASS E FELONY.
  S  7.  The opening paragraph of subdivision 1 of section 176.05 of the
penal law, as amended by chapter 211 of the laws of 2011, is amended  to
read as follows:
  any written statement as part of, or in support of, an application for
the  issuance  of,  or  the  rating of a commercial insurance policy, or
certificate or evidence of self insurance  for  commercial  OR  PERSONAL
insurance  or  commercial  OR  PERSONAL  self  insurance, or a claim for
payment or other benefit pursuant to an insurance policy or self  insur-
ance  program  for commercial or personal insurance that he or she knows
to:
  S 8. Section 176.15 of the penal law, as amended by chapter 515 of the
laws of 1986, is amended to read as follows:
S 176.15 Insurance fraud in the fourth degree.
  A person is guilty of insurance fraud in the  fourth  degree  when  he
[commits] OR SHE:
  1.  COMMITS  a  fraudulent insurance act and thereby wrongfully takes,
obtains or withholds, or attempts to wrongfully take, obtain or withhold
property with a value in excess of one thousand dollars; OR
  2. OPERATES A MOTOR VEHICLE ON A PUBLIC HIGHWAY, WHEN SUCH MOTOR VEHI-
CLE IS INSURED BY A POLICY ISSUED UNDER THE LAWS OF ANOTHER STATE,  WHEN
SUCH  PERSON  MAINTAINS  HIS OR HER PRINCIPAL RESIDENCE IN THIS STATE OR
SUCH MOTOR VEHICLE IS PRINCIPALLY GARAGED IN THIS STATE, AND SUCH INSUR-
ANCE POLICY WAS ISSUED UPON ANY WRITTEN OR ORAL STATEMENT BY SUCH PERSON
THAT HE OR SHE PRINCIPALLY RESIDES IN SUCH  OTHER  STATE  OR  THAT  SUCH
MOTOR VEHICLE IS PRINCIPALLY GARAGED IN SUCH OTHER STATE.
  Insurance fraud in the fourth degree is a class E felony.
  S  9.  The  vehicle and traffic law is amended by adding a new section
201-a to read as follows:
  S 201-A.  ACCESS  TO  INFORMATION.  THE  DEPARTMENT  SHALL  ALLOW  LAW
ENFORCEMENT PERSONNEL ACCESS TO ANY INDIVIDUAL'S STREET ADDRESS PROVIDED
PURSUANT  TO  PARAGRAPH B OF SUBDIVISION ONE OF SECTION FOUR HUNDRED ONE
AND SUBDIVISION ONE OF SECTION FIVE HUNDRED TWO OF THIS CHAPTER.

S. 4847--A                          4

  S 10. Paragraph b of subdivision 1 of section 401 of the  vehicle  and
traffic  law,  as amended by chapter 222 of the laws of 1996, is amended
to read as follows:
  b.  Every  owner  of a motor vehicle which shall be operated or driven
upon the public highways  of  this  state  shall,  except  as  otherwise
expressly  provided, cause to be presented, by mail or otherwise, to the
office or a branch office of the commissioner, or to any  agent  of  the
commissioner,  constituted  as  provided in this chapter, an application
for registration addressed to the commissioner, and on  a  blank  to  be
prepared  under  the  direction of and furnished by the commissioner for
that purpose, containing: (a) a brief description of the  motor  vehicle
to be registered, including the name and factory number of such vehicle,
and  such  other facts as the commissioner shall require; (b) the weight
of the vehicle upon which the registration fee is based if  the  fee  is
based  on  weight;  (c)  the name and residence, including county of the
owner of such motor vehicle, PROVIDED THAT IF THE APPLICANT USES A  POST
OFFICE BOX WHEN PROVIDING A RESIDENCE ADDRESS, SUCH APPLICANT SHALL ALSO
PROVIDE  THE  STREET  ADDRESS  AT  WHICH HE OR SHE RESIDES; (d) provided
that, if such motor vehicle is used or to be used  as  an  omnibus,  the
applicant  also  shall  so  certify,  and in the case of an omnibus also
certify as to the seating capacity, and if the omnibus is to be operated
wholly within a municipality pursuant to a franchise other than a  fran-
chise  express  or  implied  in  articles  of incorporation upon certain
streets designated in such franchise, those facts shall also  be  certi-
fied,  and  a  certified copy of such franchise furnished to the commis-
sioner; (e) provided, that, if such motor vehicle is an altered  livery,
the  applicant  shall  so  furnish a certified copy of the length of the
center panel of such vehicle, provided, however, that  the  commissioner
shall  require  such  proof, as he OR SHE may determine is necessary, in
the application for registration and provided  further,  if  the  center
panel of such vehicle exceeds one hundred inches, the commissioner shall
require  proof  that  such  vehicle is in compliance with all applicable
federal and state motor vehicle safety standards;  and  (f)  such  addi-
tional  facts  or evidence as the commissioner may require in connection
with the application for registration. Every owner of  a  trailer  shall
also  make application for the registration thereof in the manner herein
provided for an application to  register  a  motor  vehicle,  but  shall
contain a statement showing the manufacturer's number or other identifi-
cation satisfactory to the commissioner and no number plate for a trail-
er  issued  under  the  provisions  of subdivision three of section four
hundred two of this [chapter] ARTICLE shall be transferred  to  or  used
upon  any  other  trailer than the one for which number plate is issued.
The commissioner shall require proof, in the application  for  registra-
tion,  or  otherwise, as such commissioner may determine, that the motor
vehicle for which registration is applied for is  equipped  with  lights
conforming  in  all respects to the requirements of this chapter, and no
motor vehicle shall be registered unless it shall appear by such  proofs
that such motor vehicle is equipped with proper lights as aforesaid. The
said application shall contain or be accompanied by such evidence of the
ownership  of  the  motor vehicle described in the application as may be
required by the commissioner or his OR HER agent and which, with respect
to new vehicles, shall include, unless otherwise  specifically  provided
by  the  commissioner,  the manufacturer's statement of origin. Applica-
tions received by an agent of the commissioner shall be forwarded to the
commissioner as he OR SHE shall direct for filing.  No  application  for
registration  shall be accepted unless the applicant is at least sixteen

S. 4847--A                          5

years of age AND HAS SIGNED SUCH APPLICATION ATTESTING TO THE TRUTH  AND
VERACITY OF THE FACTS STATED THEREIN.
  S  11. Subdivision 1 of section 502 of the vehicle and traffic law, as
amended by section 2 of part CC of chapter 58 of the laws  of  2011,  is
amended to read as follows:
  1.  Application for license.  Application for a driver's license shall
be made to the commissioner.  The fee prescribed by law may be submitted
with such application. The applicant shall furnish such proof of identi-
ty, age, ADDRESS OF HIS OR HER RESIDENCE and fitness as may be  required
by the commissioner. WHEN PROVIDING HIS OR HER ADDRESS OF RESIDENCE, THE
APPLICANT  SHALL  PROVIDE THE STREET ADDRESS AT WHICH HE OR SHE RESIDES.
EACH APPLICANT SHALL SIGN HIS OR HER APPLICATION ATTESTING TO THE  TRUTH
AND  VERACITY  OF  THE  FACTS  STATED THEREIN. The commissioner may also
provide that the application procedure shall include  the  taking  of  a
photo  image  or  images  of  the applicant in accordance with rules and
regulations prescribed by the commissioner. In addition, the commission-
er also shall require that the applicant provide his or her social secu-
rity number and provide space on the application so that  the  applicant
may register in the New York state organ and tissue donor registry under
section  forty-three  hundred ten of the public health law. In addition,
an applicant for a  commercial  driver's  license  who  will  operate  a
commercial  motor vehicle in interstate commerce shall certify that such
applicant meets the requirements to operate a commercial motor  vehicle,
as  set  forth in public law 99-570, title XII, and title 49 of the code
of federal regulations, and all regulations promulgated  by  the  United
States  secretary of transportation under the hazardous materials trans-
portation act. In addition,  an  applicant  for  a  commercial  driver's
license shall submit a medical certificate at such intervals as required
by  the  federal  motor  carrier safety improvement act of 1999 and Part
383.71(h) of title 49 of the code of  federal  regulations  relating  to
medical  certification  and  in a manner prescribed by the commissioner.
For purposes of this section and sections five hundred  three  and  five
hundred ten-a of this title, the term "medical certificate" shall mean a
form  substantially  in  compliance  with  the  form  set  forth in Part
391.43(h) of title 49 of the code of federal regulations.  Upon a deter-
mination that the holder of a commercial driver's license has  made  any
false  statement,  with respect to the application for such license, the
commissioner shall revoke such license.
  S 12. This act shall take effect immediately.

Co-Sponsors

S4847B (ACTIVE) - Bill Details

Current Committee:
Law Section:
Insurance Law
Laws Affected:
Amd §§401, 405 & 2133, Ins L; amd §§170.10, 170.15, 176.05 & 176.15, add §175.50, Pen L; add §201-a, amd §§401 & 502, V & T L

S4847B (ACTIVE) - Bill Texts

view summary

Grants the superintendent of financial services authority to investigate fraudulent activities, such as motor vehicle operators who drive with no insurance coverage, and those who misrepresent their principal place of residence or where their motor vehicle is principally garaged and operated; authorizes such superintendent to accept reports of suspected fraudulent insurance actions; requires insurance companies and self-insurers to report incidents of insurance fraud to the department of financial services; includes within the class D felony of forgery in the second degree, the forgery of a certificate of insurance or an insurance identification card; includes within the class C felony of forgery in the first degree, the forgery of 10 or more written instruments; includes within the class E felony of insurance fraud in the fourth degree, the operation of a motor vehicle in this state when the vehicle is insured in another state, but it is actually garaged in this state or the owner principally resides in this state; requires applicants for motor vehicle registrations and driver's licenses to provide the department of motor vehicles with the address of their principal place of residence.

view sponsor memo
BILL NUMBER:S4847B

TITLE OF BILL:
An act
to amend the insurance law,
the penal law,
and the vehicle and
traffic law, in relation to
insurance fraud

PURPOSE:
The purpose of this bill is reduce the incidence of auto insurance
fraud including fraud committed by those who misrepresent where they
live, operate their automobile, and garage such vehicle for insurance
coverage purposes. By misrepresenting where such automobile operators
truly live and operate their motor vehicle, these persons obtain
inappropriate reductions in their auto insurance premium rates and
such costs are shifted to other law abiding automobile owners.

This bill was amended to reflect that the Insurance Department is now
called the Department of Financial Services.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
Section 1: Adds a new Insurance Law section 401(d) to explicitly
expand the authority of the Superintendent of Financial Services,
under the Insurance Fraud prevention Article, to investigate
fraudulent activities with regard to motor vehicle operators who have
not secured automobile insurance coverage or who misrepresent the
principle place where such automobiles are garaged and operated.

Section 2: Amends Insurance Law section 405(a) to authorize the
Insurance Frauds Bureau to accept reports of suspected fraudulent
insurance transactions from any self insurer with regard to health
insurance coverage, motor vehicle liability coverage, or workers
compensation coverage.

Section 3: Amends Insurance Law section 2133 to expand the scope of
prohibition for any insurance company, insurance agent, broker, or
other person who knowingly possesses, transfers or uses a forged
insurance identification card to also include other false insurance
documents which purports to evince insurance coverage when it is not
in effect or is at limits less than those stated on the document.

Section 4: Amends Penal Law section 170.10 to add a new (6) to the
list of documents that the forgery of is considered to be forgery in
the Second Degree. The new document that, if forged, would be forgery
in the Second Degree are certificates of insurance or an insurance
identification card.

Section 5: Amends Penal Law section 170.15 (Forgery in the First
Degree) to include as forgery in the first degree, the fraudulent
making, completion, or alteration of 10 or more written instruments
such as certificates of insurance or insurance identification cards.

Section 6: Adds a new Penal Law section 175.50 to make it a class E
felony to offer a false application for motor vehicle insurance or


registration. Under this provision, anyone who submits to the
Department of Motor Vehicles or to an auto insurer (to obtain an auto
insurance policy or insurance identification card) any document that
contains a false statement or information with regard to where such
applicant resides or where such applicant's motor vehicle is garaged
or operated and such document is used directly or indirectly to
register an automobile shall be a class E felony.

Section 7: Amends Penal Law section 176.05 which defines the term
"insurance fraud". Under this bill, the term "insurance fraud" is
expanded to include any false document used to secure either
insurance coverage, file an insurance policy claim, or obtain payment
for personal lines insurance coverages {i.e. auto and homeowners
insurance}. Under current law, only false documents that are used to
secure commercial lines policies or money for claims against a
commercial lines policy (i.e general liability or business property
policies) are considered to be insurance fraud. This bill expands the
types of insurance policies that persons cannot lie about to obtain
coverage or claims payment to include personal lines coverages such
as motor vehicle liability or homeowners insurance.

Section 8: Amends Penal Law section 176.15 to expand the scope of
insurance fraud in the 4th degree to include the operation of a motor
vehicle on a public highway when such operator is insured by a policy
issued under the laws of another state, but such person in fact
principally lives and garages their vehicle in New York.

Section 9: A new Vehicle & Traffic Law section 201-a is added to give
law enforcement personnel access to any individual's street address
provided to the Department of Motor Vehicles to register a motor
vehicle in this state or to obtain a driver's license in this Stat,e.
This information can be used to ensure that those who submit
information to the Department submit accurate information of their
residence and where they operate and garage their motor vehicle for
auto insurance premium rating purposes.

Section 10: Amends Vehicle & Traffic Law section 401{1} to require
that all those who file an application to register an automobile in
New York must provide their street address where they reside if such
person uses a Post Office box for their location of residence. The
purpose of this provision is to curtail those that submit fraudulent
information on where such applicants truly reside.

Section 11: Amends Vehicle & Traffic Law section 502(1) to require
that all those who file an application for a driver's license must
provide their street address where they reside if such person uses a
Post Office box for their location of residence.

JUSTIFICATION:
The purpose of this bill is to address the ever increasing incidence
of auto insurance fraud in this state. More particularly, this bill
seeks to address insurance fraud that is perpetrated against those
law abiding operators of motor vehicles that accurately and
truthfully disclose where they reside and operate and garage their
vehicles, regardless of where they live. Some who live in high auto
insurance rate areas, such as the New York City metropolitan area,
misrepresent where they live, garage and operate their automobiles


and fraudulently maintain that they live in low insurance premium
rate areas that are either upstate or out of state.

There is a prevalence of in-state residents misrepresenting their true
place of residence so that they can obtain much lower auto insurance
rates. Instead of disclosing their true address in high insurance
premium places such as, for example, Bronx or Kings Counties, they
state that they live in lower insurance premium rated territories
such as North Carolina, Pennsylvania, or upstate counties that have
much lower incidents of motor vehicle theft, car accidents ~1d
judgments relegated to motor vehicle accidents. This issue was a
topic of a report released in 2006 by the State Commission on
Investigations. since 2006, the commission has sunsetted, however,
senator Klein is revising end updating this report. The new Report
"Auto Insurance Rate Evasion" was released in February 2011. This
bill implements many of the suggested changes contained in that Report.

This situation or rate evasion, while artificially lowering the
insurance rates of those who fraudulently do not disclose their true
residential address, substantially increases the insurance premiums
paid by those who truthfully disclose their actual place of residence
and where they operated and garaged their cars. This hill should
bring more equity to those who purchase auto insurance coverages in
this state and ensure that everyone pays their fair share for auto
insurance coverages that matches their actuarial risk of potential
physical damage or theft of their automobiles, risk of personal
injury or liability exposure due to judgments obtain in local courts.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
Similar to S.988 of 2011
Similar to S.7091 of 2010 - Referred to Insurance

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:
None.

EFFECTIVE DATE:
Immediately.

view full text
download pdf
                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                 4847--B

                       2011-2012 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                             April 27, 2011
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sens. KLEIN, CARLUCCI, SAVINO, SQUADRON, VALESKY -- read
  twice and ordered printed, and when printed to  be  committed  to  the
  Committee on Insurance -- recommitted to the Committee on Insurance in
  accordance  with  Senate  Rule 6, sec. 8 -- committee discharged, bill
  amended, ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said  commit-
  tee  --  reported  favorably  from said committee and committed to the
  Committee on Codes --  committee  discharged,  bill  amended,  ordered
  reprinted as amended and recommitted to said committee

AN  ACT  to  amend the insurance law, the penal law, and the vehicle and
  traffic law, in relation to insurance fraud

  THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND  ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section 1. Section 401 of the insurance law is amended by adding a new
subsection (d) to read as follows:
  (D)  THE  SUPERINTENDENT  SHALL  HAVE BROAD AUTHORITY PURSUANT TO THIS
CHAPTER TO INVESTIGATE FRAUDULENT ACTIVITIES WITH REGARD TO MOTOR  VEHI-
CLE  DRIVERS  THAT  OPERATE  AUTOMOBILES WITH NO INSURANCE COVERAGE, AND
MOTOR VEHICLE  INSUREDS  WHO  MISREPRESENT  THE  PRINCIPAL  PLACE  WHERE
INSURED  MOTOR  VEHICLES ARE GARAGED AND OPERATED. OPERATING MOTOR VEHI-
CLES WITHOUT PROPER INSURANCE IN VIOLATION OF ARTICLE SIX OF THE VEHICLE
AND TRAFFIC LAW IS A SIGNIFICANT DANGER TO THE  PUBLIC  BECAUSE  DRIVERS
ARE  UNABLE  TO  COMPENSATE INDIVIDUALS FOR PERSONAL INJURIES, DEATH AND
PROPERTY DAMAGE THEY INFLICT UPON OTHERS.   FURTHERMORE,  MOTOR  VEHICLE
INSUREDS  WHO  MISREPRESENT  THE PRINCIPAL PLACE WHERE SUCH VEHICLES ARE
GARAGED AND OPERATED IMPROPERLY  SHIFT  THEIR  HIGH  LIABILITY  EXPOSURE
COSTS TO OTHER MOTOR VEHICLE INSUREDS THAT DO NOT FACE SUCH HIGH LIABIL-
ITY RISK AND INSURANCE PREMIUM COSTS.
  S 2. Subsection (a) of section 405 of the insurance law, as amended by
section  7  of  part  A of chapter 62 of the laws of 2011, is amended to
read as follows:

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD05004-10-2

S. 4847--B                          2

  (a) Any person licensed or registered pursuant to  the  provisions  of
this  chapter,  and  any  person engaged in the business of insurance or
life settlement in this state who is exempted from compliance  with  the
licensing  requirements  of  this chapter, including the state insurance
fund  of  this state, who has reason to believe that an insurance trans-
action or life settlement act may be fraudulent, or has knowledge that a
fraudulent insurance transaction or fraudulent life  settlement  act  is
about  to take place, or has taken place shall, within thirty days after
determination by such person that the transaction appears to be  fraudu-
lent, send to the superintendent on a form prescribed by the superinten-
dent, the information requested by the form and such additional informa-
tion  relative  to  the factual circumstances of the transaction and the
parties involved as the superintendent may require.  The  superintendent
shall  accept  reports of suspected fraudulent insurance transactions or
fraudulent life settlement acts from any self insurer, including but not
limited to self insurers providing health insurance  coverage  or  those
defined  in  section  fifty  of the workers' compensation law, and shall
treat such reports as any other received pursuant to this section.   THE
SUPERINTENDENT  SHALL  ACCEPT  REPORTS OF SUSPECTED FRAUDULENT INSURANCE
TRANSACTIONS FROM ANY SELF INSURER INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED  TO,  SELF
INSURERS  PROVIDING  HEALTH  INSURANCE  COVERAGE,  THOSE PROVIDING MOTOR
VEHICLE LIABILITY INSURANCE OR THOSE DEFINED IN  SECTION  FIFTY  OF  THE
WORKERS'  COMPENSATION  LAW,  AND  SHALL TREAT SUCH REPORTS AS ANY OTHER
RECEIVED PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION.
  S 3. Section 2133 of the insurance law, as amended by  chapter  77  of
the laws of 1994, is amended to read as follows:
  S  2133. [Forged] FALSE INSURANCE DOCUMENTS AND FORGED insurance iden-
tification cards. Any  insurance  company,  insurance  agent,  insurance
broker  or  other person who or which, personally or by the action of an
employee or agent, KNOWINGLY possesses, transfers or uses: (A) ANY DOCU-
MENT WHICH PURPORTS TO EVINCE INSURANCE COVERAGE WHEN SUCH  COVERAGE  IS
NOT  IN  EFFECT  OR IS IN EFFECT AT LIMITS LESS THAN THOSE STATED IN THE
DOCUMENT; OR (B) a forged insurance  identification  card  for  a  motor
vehicle, having knowledge, personally or through such employee or agent,
of  the  fact  that such insurance identification card, when issued, did
not actually represent an owner's policy of  liability  insurance  or  a
financial  security  bond  issued by an insurance company licensed to do
business in this state covering the motor  vehicle  identified  on  such
card, shall be liable for payment to the people of this state of a civil
penalty  in  a sum not exceeding one thousand dollars for the first such
violation and a sum not exceeding five thousand dollars for each  subse-
quent  violation.  For  the  purposes  of  this section the term "forged
insurance identification card" means a written insurance  identification
card  which  has  been  falsely made, completed or altered, and the term
"falsely made, completed or altered" shall have the same meaning as  set
forth in section 170.00 of the penal law.
  S  4.  Subdivision 5 of section 170.10 of the penal law is amended and
a new subdivision 6 is added to read as follows:
  5. A prescription of a duly licensed physician or other person author-
ized to issue the same for any drug or any instrument or device used  in
the  taking  or  administering  of  drugs  for  which  a prescription is
required by law[.]; OR
  6. A CERTIFICATE OF INSURANCE OR AN INSURANCE IDENTIFICATION CARD,  AS
DEFINED IN SECTION THREE HUNDRED ELEVEN OF THE VEHICLE AND TRAFFIC LAW.
  S 5. Section 170.15 of the penal law is amended to read as follows:
S 170.15 Forgery in the first degree.

S. 4847--B                          3

  A person is guilty of forgery in the first degree when, with intent to
defraud,  deceive  or injure another, he OR SHE falsely makes, completes
or alters [a]:
  1. TEN OR MORE WRITTEN INSTRUMENTS; OR
  2. A written instrument which is or purports to be, or which is calcu-
lated to become or to represent if completed:
  [1.]  (A) Part of an issue of money, stamps, securities or other valu-
able instruments issued by a government or governmental instrumentality;
or
  [2.] (B) Part of an issue of stock, bonds or other instruments repres-
enting interests in or claims against a corporate or other  organization
or its property.
  Forgery in the first degree is a class C felony.
  S  6.  The penal law is amended by adding a new section 175.50 to read
as follows:
S 175.50 OFFERING A FALSE APPLICATION FOR  MOTOR  VEHICLE  INSURANCE  OR
           REGISTRATION.
  A  PERSON  IS GUILTY OF OFFERING A FALSE APPLICATION FOR MOTOR VEHICLE
INSURANCE OR REGISTRATION WHEN KNOWING THAT ANY DOCUMENT HE OR SHE FILES
WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF MOTOR VEHICLES OR AN INSURER PROVIDING  LIABILITY
INSURANCE FOR A MOTOR VEHICLE CONTAINS A FALSE STATEMENT OR FALSE INFOR-
MATION  WITH REGARD TO WHERE HE OR SHE RESIDES OR WHERE HIS OR HER MOTOR
VEHICLE IS GARAGED AND OPERATED.
  OFFERING A FALSE APPLICATION FOR MOTOR VEHICLE INSURANCE OR  REGISTRA-
TION IS A CLASS E FELONY.
  S  7.  Subdivision 1 of section 176.05 of the penal law, as amended by
chapter 211 of the laws of 2011, is amended to read as follows:
  1. any written statement as part of, or in support of, an  application
for  the issuance of, or the rating of a commercial insurance policy, or
certificate or evidence of self insurance  for  commercial  OR  PERSONAL
insurance  or  commercial  OR  PERSONAL  self  insurance, or a claim for
payment or other benefit pursuant to an insurance policy or self  insur-
ance  program  for commercial or personal insurance that he or she knows
to:
  (a) contain materially false information concerning any fact  material
thereto; or
  (b) conceal, for the purpose of misleading, information concerning any
fact material thereto; or
  S 8. Section 176.15 of the penal law, as amended by chapter 515 of the
laws of 1986, is amended to read as follows:
S 176.15 Insurance fraud in the fourth degree.
  A  person  is  guilty  of insurance fraud in the fourth degree when he
[commits] OR SHE:
  1. COMMITS a fraudulent insurance act and  thereby  wrongfully  takes,
obtains or withholds, or attempts to wrongfully take, obtain or withhold
property with a value in excess of one thousand dollars; OR
  2. OPERATES A MOTOR VEHICLE ON A PUBLIC HIGHWAY, WHEN SUCH MOTOR VEHI-
CLE  IS INSURED BY A POLICY ISSUED UNDER THE LAWS OF ANOTHER STATE, WHEN
SUCH PERSON MAINTAINS HIS OR HER PRINCIPAL RESIDENCE IN  THIS  STATE  OR
SUCH MOTOR VEHICLE IS PRINCIPALLY GARAGED IN THIS STATE, AND SUCH INSUR-
ANCE POLICY WAS ISSUED UPON ANY WRITTEN OR ORAL STATEMENT BY SUCH PERSON
THAT  HE  OR  SHE  PRINCIPALLY  RESIDES IN SUCH OTHER STATE OR THAT SUCH
MOTOR VEHICLE IS PRINCIPALLY GARAGED IN SUCH OTHER STATE.
  Insurance fraud in the fourth degree is a class E felony.
  S 9. The vehicle and traffic law is amended by adding  a  new  section
201-a to read as follows:

S. 4847--B                          4

  S  201-A.  ACCESS  TO  INFORMATION.  THE  DEPARTMENT  SHALL  ALLOW LAW
ENFORCEMENT PERSONNEL ACCESS TO ANY INDIVIDUAL'S STREET ADDRESS PROVIDED
PURSUANT TO PARAGRAPH B OF SUBDIVISION ONE OF SECTION FOUR  HUNDRED  ONE
AND SUBDIVISION ONE OF SECTION FIVE HUNDRED TWO OF THIS CHAPTER.
  S  10.  Paragraph b of subdivision 1 of section 401 of the vehicle and
traffic law, as amended by chapter 222 of the laws of 1996,  is  amended
to read as follows:
  b.  Every  owner  of a motor vehicle which shall be operated or driven
upon the public highways  of  this  state  shall,  except  as  otherwise
expressly  provided, cause to be presented, by mail or otherwise, to the
office or a branch office of the commissioner, or to any  agent  of  the
commissioner,  constituted  as  provided in this chapter, an application
for registration addressed to the commissioner, and on  a  blank  to  be
prepared  under  the  direction of and furnished by the commissioner for
that purpose, containing: (a) a brief description of the  motor  vehicle
to be registered, including the name and factory number of such vehicle,
and  such  other facts as the commissioner shall require; (b) the weight
of the vehicle upon which the registration fee is based if  the  fee  is
based  on  weight;  (c)  the name and residence, including county of the
owner of such motor vehicle, PROVIDED THAT IF THE APPLICANT USES A  POST
OFFICE BOX WHEN PROVIDING A RESIDENCE ADDRESS, SUCH APPLICANT SHALL ALSO
PROVIDE  THE  STREET  ADDRESS  AT  WHICH HE OR SHE RESIDES; (d) provided
that, if such motor vehicle is used or to be used  as  an  omnibus,  the
applicant  also  shall  so  certify,  and in the case of an omnibus also
certify as to the seating capacity, and if the omnibus is to be operated
wholly within a municipality pursuant to a franchise other than a  fran-
chise  express  or  implied  in  articles  of incorporation upon certain
streets designated in such franchise, those facts shall also  be  certi-
fied,  and  a  certified copy of such franchise furnished to the commis-
sioner; (e) provided, that, if such motor vehicle is an altered  livery,
the  applicant  shall  so  furnish a certified copy of the length of the
center panel of such vehicle, provided, however, that  the  commissioner
shall  require  such  proof, as he OR SHE may determine is necessary, in
the application for registration and provided  further,  if  the  center
panel of such vehicle exceeds one hundred inches, the commissioner shall
require  proof  that  such  vehicle is in compliance with all applicable
federal and state motor vehicle safety standards;  and  (f)  such  addi-
tional  facts  or evidence as the commissioner may require in connection
with the application for registration. Every owner of  a  trailer  shall
also  make application for the registration thereof in the manner herein
provided for an application to  register  a  motor  vehicle,  but  shall
contain a statement showing the manufacturer's number or other identifi-
cation satisfactory to the commissioner and no number plate for a trail-
er  issued  under  the  provisions  of subdivision three of section four
hundred two of this [chapter] ARTICLE shall be transferred  to  or  used
upon  any  other  trailer than the one for which number plate is issued.
The commissioner shall require proof, in the application  for  registra-
tion,  or  otherwise, as such commissioner may determine, that the motor
vehicle for which registration is applied for is  equipped  with  lights
conforming  in  all respects to the requirements of this chapter, and no
motor vehicle shall be registered unless it shall appear by such  proofs
that such motor vehicle is equipped with proper lights as aforesaid. The
said application shall contain or be accompanied by such evidence of the
ownership  of  the  motor vehicle described in the application as may be
required by the commissioner or his OR HER agent and which, with respect
to new vehicles, shall include, unless otherwise  specifically  provided

S. 4847--B                          5

by  the  commissioner,  the manufacturer's statement of origin. Applica-
tions received by an agent of the commissioner shall be forwarded to the
commissioner as he OR SHE shall direct for filing.  No  application  for
registration  shall be accepted unless the applicant is at least sixteen
years of age AND HAS SIGNED SUCH APPLICATION ATTESTING TO THE TRUTH  AND
VERACITY OF THE FACTS STATED THEREIN.
  S  11. Subdivision 1 of section 502 of the vehicle and traffic law, as
amended by section 1 of part D of chapter 58 of the  laws  of  2012,  is
amended to read as follows:
  1.  Application for license.  Application for a driver's license shall
be made to the commissioner.  The fee prescribed by law may be submitted
with such application. The applicant shall furnish such proof of identi-
ty, age, ADDRESS OF HIS OR HER RESIDENCE and fitness as may be  required
by  the  commissioner.   WHEN PROVIDING HIS OR HER ADDRESS OF RESIDENCE,
THE APPLICANT SHALL PROVIDE THE  STREET  ADDRESS  AT  WHICH  HE  OR  SHE
RESIDES.  EACH  APPLICANT SHALL SIGN HIS OR HER APPLICATION ATTESTING TO
THE TRUTH AND VERACITY OF THE FACTS STATED THEREIN. The commissioner may
also provide that the application procedure shall include the taking  of
a  photo  image  or images of the applicant in accordance with rules and
regulations prescribed by the commissioner. In addition, the commission-
er also shall require that the applicant provide his or her social secu-
rity number and provide space on the application so that  the  applicant
may register in the New York state organ and tissue donor registry under
section  forty-three  hundred ten of the public health law. In addition,
an applicant for a  commercial  driver's  license  who  will  operate  a
commercial  motor vehicle in interstate commerce shall certify that such
applicant meets the requirements to operate a commercial motor  vehicle,
as  set  forth in public law 99-570, title XII, and title 49 of the code
of federal regulations, and all regulations promulgated  by  the  United
States  secretary of transportation under the hazardous materials trans-
portation act. In addition,  an  applicant  for  a  commercial  driver's
license shall submit a medical certificate at such intervals as required
by  the  federal  motor  carrier safety improvement act of 1999 and Part
383.71(h) of title 49 of the code of  federal  regulations  relating  to
medical  certification  and  in a manner prescribed by the commissioner.
For purposes of this section  and  sections  five  hundred  three,  five
hundred ten-a, and five hundred ten-aa of this title, the terms "medical
certificate" and "medical certification" shall mean a form substantially
in  compliance  with the form set forth in Part 391.43(h) of title 49 of
the code of federal regulations. Upon a determination that the holder of
a commercial driver's license has made any false statement, with respect
to the application for such license, the commissioner shall revoke  such
license.
  S 12. This act shall take effect immediately.

Comments

Open Legislation comments facilitate discussion of New York State legislation. All comments are subject to moderation. Comments deemed off-topic, commercial, campaign-related, self-promotional; or that contain profanity or hate speech; or that link to sites outside of the nysenate.gov domain are not permitted, and will not be published. Comment moderation is generally performed Monday through Friday.

By contributing or voting you agree to the Terms of Participation and verify you are over 13.