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1976 South Carolina Code of Laws
Unannotated
Updated through the end of the 2001 Session

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The State of South Carolina owns the copyright to the Code of Laws of South Carolina, 1976, as contained herein. Any use of the text, section headings, or catchlines of the 1976 Code is subject to the terms of federal copyright and other applicable laws and such text, section headings, or catchlines may not be reproduced in whole or in part in any form or for inclusion in any material which is offered for sale or lease without the express written permission of the Chairman of the South Carolina Legislative Council or the Code Commissioner of South Carolina.

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Title 56 - Motor Vehicles

CHAPTER 10.

MOTOR VEHICLE REGISTRATION AND FINANCIAL SECURITY

ARTICLE 1.

VEHICLE FINANCIAL SECURITY AND OTHER MATTERS

SECTION 56-10-10. Security required on registered vehicles.

Every owner of a motor vehicle required to be registered in this State shall maintain the security required by Section 56-10-20 with respect to each motor vehicle owned by him throughout the period the registration is in effect. No certificate of registration may be issued or transferred to an owner by the director of the department unless the owner or prospective owner produces satisfactory evidence that the security is in effect, including the name of the owner's automobile liability insurer, and his signed statement, subject to this state's perjury statutes, that insurance is in place as required by this section.

SECTION 56-10-20. Type of security required.

The security required under this chapter is a policy or policies written by insurers authorized to write such policies in South Carolina providing for at least (1) the minimum coverages specified in Sections 38-77-140 through 38-77-230 and (2) the benefits required under Sections 38-77-240, 38-77-250, and 38-77-260. However, the director or his designee may approve and accept another form of security in lieu of such a liability insurance policy if he finds that such other form of security is adequate to provide and does in fact provide the benefits required by this chapter.

SECTION 56-10-30. Automatic suspension of registration upon lapse or termination of security.

If at any time the security required of any person under Section 56-10-20 lapses or terminates, the certificate of registration of the motor vehicle for which the security was in effect is, as of the date the security lapses or terminates, automatically suspended and must remain suspended until the security is replaced.

SECTION 56-10-40. Providers of insurance or security to notify department of termination or lapse; notice to person holding registration.

Every insurer writing automobile liability insurance in this State and every provider of other security approved and accepted by the director or his designee in lieu of such insurance shall immediately notify the department of the lapse or termination of any such insurance or security issued to or provided for a resident of this State in the following circumstances:

(1) the lapse or termination of such insurance or security occurs within three months of issuance provided that this subsection only applies to new policies, and not renewal or replacement policies; or

(2) the lapse or termination occurs after three months for a resident who fails one or more of the objective standards prescribed in Section 38-73-455.

This notification must be in writing or magnetic media in a manner considered satisfactory to the department. Upon receipt of any such notice the department shall make a reasonable effort to notify the person that his certificate of registration has been suspended and shall recover the certificate from such person and the motor vehicle registration plates from the vehicles concerned.

SECTION 56-10-45. Confiscation of registration certificates and license plates.

(A) The Department of Public Safety may enter into agreements with other municipal and county law enforcement agencies for the collection of suspended or revoked drivers' licenses, motor vehicle registrations, and motor vehicle plates. The department must assess a fifty dollar fine for each item recovered pursuant to this section in addition to any other fines assessed. Upon collection, this fine must be returned on a quarterly basis to the general fund of the municipality or county which initiated the enforcement action.

(B) All motor vehicle registration certificates, motor vehicle plates, and drivers' licenses confiscated or seized pursuant to this section must be returned to the department within fifteen days.

(C) The department shall collect and keep the reinstatement fee as provided in Section 56-10-240 and the per diem fine as provided in Section 56-10-245 upon the reinstatement of tags confiscated by local law enforcement agencies pursuant to this section. Fines collected pursuant to Section 56-10-240, referring to the monetary penalty of a person who is guilty of a misdemeanor for wilful failure to return his motor vehicle license plates and registration, must be paid to the governing body of the local law enforcement agency confiscating the tags and deposited in the general fund of the local governing body. The director or his designee shall monthly provide information to local law enforcement agencies, upon request of the local law enforcement agency, on uninsured vehicles.

SECTION 56-10-50. Suspension of registration not to affect title to vehicle.

No suspension of a certificate of registration hereunder affects the status of title to the motor vehicle or any property rights in such motor vehicle, but the provisions of Section 56-3-110 are applicable with respect to the operation of such motor vehicle.

ARTICLE 3.

INSURANCE REQUIREMENTS RELATING TO MOTOR VEHICLE REGISTRATION

SECTION 56-10-210. Definitions.

As used in this article:

(1) The term "insured motor vehicle" means a motor vehicle as to which there is maintained the security required by Section 56-10-20.

(2) The term "operator" means every person who drives or is in actual physical control of a motor vehicle or who is exercising control over or steering a vehicle being towed by a motor vehicle.

(3) [Deleted]

SECTION 56-10-220. Requirement that vehicle sought to be registered be insured; proof.

Every person applying for registration for a motor vehicle shall at the time of such registration and licensing declare the vehicle to be an insured motor vehicle under the penalty set forth in Section 56-10-260 and shall execute and furnish to the department his certificate that such motor vehicle is an insured motor vehicle, and that he will maintain insurance thereon during the registration period. The certificate must be in the form prescribed by the department. The department may require any registered owner or any applicant for registration and licensing of a motor vehicle declared to be an insured motor vehicle to submit a certificate of insurance executed by an authorized agent or representative of an insurance company authorized to do business in this State. Such certificate must also be in a form prescribed by the department.

SECTION 56-10-225. Proof of insurance and financial responsibility in vehicle; penalties.

(A) A person whose application for registration and licensing of a motor vehicle has been approved by the department must maintain in the motor vehicle at all times proof that the motor vehicle is an insured vehicle in conformity with the laws of this State and Section 56-10-510.

(B) The owner of a motor vehicle must maintain proof of financial responsibility in the motor vehicle at all times and it must be displayed upon demand of a police officer or any other person duly authorized by law.

(C) A person who fails to maintain the proof in his motor vehicle as required by subsection (A) is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, is subject to the same punishment as provided by law for failure of the person driving or in control of a motor vehicle to carry the vehicle registration card and to display the registration card upon demand. However, a charge of failing to maintain proof that a motor vehicle is insured must be dismissed if the person provides proof that the motor vehicle was insured at the time of the violation to the court on or before the date this matter is set to be disposed of by the court. A person failing to maintain in his vehicle the proof required pursuant to subsection (A), within thirty days of being cited for this failure, shall provide proof of insurance or have his driver's license suspended until satisfactory proof is provided. Further, this proof must be provided every quarter for one year after being cited for driving without proof of liability insurance. Failure to provide this proof when required shall cause his driver's license to be suspended until satisfactory proof is provided.

(D) The penalties provided in subsection (C) are in addition to, and not in lieu of, any other penalty, of whatever nature, provided by law for failing to act as required in subsection (A).

SECTION 56-10-230. Notice of termination of insurance.

Prior to the termination of insurance by cancellation or refusal to renew by the insurer notice thereof must be given as required by Sections 38-77-110 and 38-77-120.

SECTION 56-10-240. Requirement that upon loss of insurance, insured obtain new insurance or surrender registration and plates; written notice by insurer; suspension of registration and plates; appeal of suspension; enforcement; penalties.

(A) If, during the period for which it is licensed, a motor vehicle is or becomes an uninsured motor vehicle, then the vehicle owner immediately shall obtain insurance on the vehicle or within five days after the effective date of cancellation or expiration of his liability insurance policy surrender the motor vehicle license plates and registration certificates issued for the motor vehicle. If an automobile liability insurance premium is not paid within five working days after the last day to pay the premium, whether it is the premium due date or a grace period that is granted customarily or contractually, a motor vehicle is an uninsured motor vehicle, and the insurer shall give written notice, or notice by magnetic or electronic media in a manner considered satisfactory to the department, within ten days after the five-day period ends, in addition to that notice previously given in accordance with law, by delivery under United States Post Office bulk certified mail, return receipt requested, to the department of the cancellation or refusal to renew if the lapse or termination of such insurance or security occurs within three months of issuance, provided that this subsection only applies to new policies, and not renewal or replacement policies.

(B) The department, in its discretion, may authorize insurers to utilize alternative methods of providing notice of cancellation of or refusal to renew to the department. The department may not reissue registration certificates and license plates for that vehicle until satisfactory evidence has been filed by the owner or by the insurer who gave the cancellation or refusal to renew notice to the department that the vehicle is insured. Upon receiving information to the effect that a policy is canceled or otherwise terminated on a motor vehicle registered in South Carolina, the department shall suspend the license plates and registration certificate and shall initiate action as required within fifteen days of the notice of cancellation to pick up the license plates and registration certificate. A person who has had his license plates and registration certificate suspended by the department, but who at the time of suspension possesses liability insurance coverage sufficient to meet the financial responsibility requirements as set forth in this chapter, has the right to appeal the suspension immediately to the Director of the Department of Insurance. If the Director of the Department of Insurance determines that the person has sufficient liability insurance coverage, he shall notify the department, and the suspension is voided immediately. The department shall give notice by first class mail of the cancellation or suspension of registration privileges to the vehicle owner at his last known address. However, when license plates are surrendered pursuant to this section, they must be forwarded to the Department of Revenue office in the county where the person who surrenders the plates resides.

(C) If the vehicle owner unlawfully refuses to surrender the suspended items as required in this article, the department through its designated agents or by request to a county or municipal law enforcement agency may take possession of the suspended license plates and registration certificate and may not reissue the registration until proper proof of liability insurance coverage is provided and until the owner has paid a reinstatement fee of two hundred dollars. A person who voluntarily surrenders his license plates and registration certificate before their suspension shall only be charged a reinstatement fee of five dollars.

(D) A person wilfully failing to return his motor vehicle license plates and registration certificates as required in this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be punished as follows:

(1) for a first offense, fined not less than one hundred dollars nor more than two hundred dollars or imprisoned for thirty days;

(2) for a second offense, fined two hundred dollars or imprisoned for thirty days, or both;

(3) for a third and subsequent offense, imprisoned for not less than forty-five days nor more than six months.

(E) Only convictions which occurred within ten years including and immediately preceding the date of the last conviction constitute prior convictions within the meaning of this section.

SECTION 56-10-245. Per diem fine for lapse in required coverage.

Whenever a person furnishes proof of liability insurance, or surrenders or has his registration or license tags confiscated for failure to produce proof of insurance, after the department receives notice of the lapse or termination of the required liability insurance, the department shall compare the effective date of the lapse or termination with the date of the proof of insurance or the date of the confiscation or surrender. If the department determines there was a lapse in the required coverage the department shall assess, in addition to other fines or penalties imposed by the law, a per diem fine in the amount of five dollars. The department shall collect and keep this fine to defer the costs of the financial responsibility program. The fine provided for in this section and the two hundred dollar reinstatement fee pursuant to Section 56-10-240 of the 1976 Code must not be assessed if the person furnishes proof, as documented by his sworn statement, that the motor vehicle upon which the coverage has lapsed or been terminated has not been operated upon the roads, streets, or highways of this State during the lapse or termination, and the lapse or termination is due to military service or illness as documented by a signed physician's statement. The total amount of the fine provided for in this section may not exceed two hundred dollars for a first offense.

SECTION 56-10-250. Unlawful to sell vehicle with suspended registration to family member.

It is unlawful for any vehicle owner to sell or otherwise dispose of any motor vehicle, for which the registration and license plates have been suspended, to any member of his family residing in the same household. Any person violating the provisions of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not less than one hundred dollars nor more than two hundred dollars or imprisoned for thirty days and, upon conviction of a second offense, be fined two hundred dollars or imprisoned for thirty days, or both, and for a third and subsequent offenses must be imprisoned for not less than forty-five days nor more than six months. Only convictions which occurred within five years including and immediately preceding the date of the last conviction constitute prior convictions within the meaning of this section.

SECTION 56-10-260. False certificate or false evidence of insurance; penalties; special restricted driver's licenses.

(A) Any person who knowingly makes a false certificate as to whether a motor vehicle is an insured motor vehicle or presents to the department false evidence that any motor vehicle sought to be registered is insured is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not less than one hundred dollars nor more than two hundred dollars or imprisoned for thirty days and, upon conviction of a second offense, be fined two hundred dollars or imprisoned for thirty days, or both, and for a third or subsequent offense must be imprisoned for not less than forty-five days nor more than six months. Only convictions which occurred within five years including and immediately preceding the date of the last conviction constitute prior convictions within the meaning of this section. The department shall deny, for a period of six months, registration of any motor vehicle for which a false certificate or false evidence is presented that the vehicle is insured and shall revoke, and may not thereafter reissue for a period of six months, the driver's license of any person making a false certificate or offering false evidence, and then only when all other provisions of law have been complied with by that person.

(B)(1) If a person is employed or enrolled in a college or university at any time while his driver's license is suspended pursuant to this section, he may apply for a special restricted driver's license permitting him to drive only to and from work or his place of education and in the course of his employment or education during the period of suspension. The department may issue the special restricted driver's license only upon a showing by the person that he is employed or enrolled in a college or university, and that he lives further than one mile from his place of employment or place of education. The department may not issue the special restricted driver's license until proof of financial responsibility has been filed.

(2) If the department issues a special restricted driver's license, it shall designate reasonable restrictions on the times during which and routes on which the person may operate a motor vehicle. A change in the employment hours, place of employment, status as a student, or residence must be reported immediately to the department by the licensee.

(3) The fee for each special restricted driver's license is one hundred dollars, but no additional fee is due because of changes in the place and hours of employment, education, or residence. Of this fee, twenty dollars must be distributed to the general fund and eighty dollars must be placed by the Comptroller General into a special restricted account to be used by the department to defray the expenses of the Division of Motor Vehicles.

(4) The operation of a motor vehicle outside the time limits and route imposed by a special restricted license by the person issued that license is a violation of Section 56-1-460.

SECTION 56-10-270. Operation of uninsured vehicle; penalties; special restricted driver's licenses.

(a) Any person knowingly operating an uninsured motor vehicle subject to registration in this State or any person knowingly allowing the operation of an uninsured motor vehicle subject to registration in this State is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must: for a first offense, be fined not less than one hundred dollars nor more than two hundred dollars or imprisoned for thirty days; for a second offense, be fined two hundred dollars or imprisoned for thirty days, or both; and for a third or subsequent offense must be imprisoned for not less than forty-five days nor more than six months. Only convictions which occurred within five years including and immediately preceding the date of the last conviction constitute prior convictions within the meaning of this section. An uninsured motor vehicle includes an insured vehicle with respect to which the operator has been excluded from coverage pursuant to the provisions of Section 38-77-340.

(b) The department upon receipt of information to the effect that any person has been convicted of violating subsection (a) of this section shall suspend the driving privilege and all license plates and registration certificates issued in the person's name for a period of thirty days and may not reinstate that person's privileges until proof of financial responsibility has been filed.

(c)(1) If a person is employed or enrolled in a college or university at any time while his driver's license is suspended pursuant to this section, he may apply for a special restricted driver's license permitting him to drive only to and from work or his place of education and in the course of his employment or education during the period of suspension. The department may issue the special restricted driver's license only upon a showing by the person that he is employed or enrolled in a college or university, and that he lives further than one mile from his place of employment or place of education. The department may not issue the special restricted driver's license until proof of financial responsibility has been filed.

(2) If the department issues a special restricted driver's license, it shall designate reasonable restrictions on the times during which and routes on which the person may operate a motor vehicle. A change in the employment hours, place of employment, status as a student, or residence must be reported immediately to the department by the licensee.

(3) The fee for each special restricted driver's license is one hundred dollars, but no additional fee is due because of changes in the place and hours of employment, education, or residence. Of this fee, twenty dollars must be distributed to the general fund and eighty dollars must be placed by the Comptroller General into a special restricted account to be used by the department to defray the expenses of the Division of Motor Vehicles.

(4) The operation of a motor vehicle outside the time limits and route imposed by a special restricted license by the person issued that license is a violation of Section 56-1-460.

(d) Any person whose license plates and registration certificates which are suspended as provided in this section, which are not suspended for any other reason, may have them immediately restored if he files proof of financial responsibility with the department.

SECTION 56-10-280. Insurance not to be issued for period less than six months; contract or policy valid for at least sixty days; cancellation within sixty days.

(A) Contracts or policies of insurance issued to meet the financial responsibility requirements prescribed in this chapter must be issued for not less than six months. A contract or policy of insurance remains in effect at least sixty days notwithstanding a power of attorney which may purport to give the attorney-in-fact the right to effect cancellation on behalf of the insured. However, a contract or policy may be canceled within the first sixty days only under one or more of the following circumstances:

(1) a check or bank draft tendered by the insured for payment to an agent, an insurance company, or a premium finance company is returned unpaid for insufficient funds or other reason by the insured's financial institution. If the check or draft is an initial payment made by an applicant for insurance or a payment made by an insured to renew a policy, the cancellation is effective as of the policy inception or renewal date.

(2) the insured produces satisfactory proof from the department that he has sold or otherwise disposed of the insured vehicle or surrendered its tags and registration.

(3) the insured has secured another policy that meets the financial responsibility requirements prescribed in this chapter.

(B) This section does not prohibit refunds to the insured for cancellations after sixty days resulting from causes other than nonpayment of premium. Where an insurance company or premium finance company cancels a contract or policy pursuant to this section for nonpayment of premium under the circumstances in subsection (A) which occurs within the first sixty days, the insurance company, premium finance company, or agent may charge and collect a fifteen-dollar penalty in addition to that otherwise provided by law, and the penalty charge is not a premium charge.

SECTION 56-10-290. [Former 1976 Code Section 56-11-790: 1962 Code Section 46-750.153; 1974 (58) 2718; Am 1977 Act No. 80, Section 7; repealed by 1987 Act No. 155, Section 25 and recodified as Section 56-10-290 by 1987 Act No. 155, Section 9; 1993 Act No. 181, Section 1482, eff July 1, 1993] Repealed by 1996 Act No. 459, Section 246A, eff June 5, 1996.

SECTION 56-10-300. [Former 1976 Code Section 56-11-800: 1962 Code Section 46-750.150; 1974 (58) 2718; repealed by 1987 Act No. 155, Section 25, and recodified as Section 56-10-300 by 1987 Act No. 155, Section 9] Repealed by 1996 Act No. 459, Section 246A, eff June 5, 1996.

ARTICLE 5.

ESTABLISHMENT OF UNINSURED MOTORIST FUND

SECTION 56-10-510. Registration of uninsured motor vehicle; fee; use of fee; certificate of insurance; penalties for failure to submit certificate of insurance.

In addition to any other fees prescribed by law, every person registering an uninsured motor vehicle, as defined in Section 56-9-20, at the time of registering or reregistering the uninsured vehicle, shall pay a fee of five hundred and fifty dollars. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, fifty dollars of the uninsured motor vehicle fee is nonrefundable and is directed to be paid to the South Carolina Reinsurance Facility for the recoupment of assessments or losses of the South Carolina Reinsurance Facility pursuant to Section 56-10-554 until otherwise ordered by the director of the Department of Insurance. However, if the uninsured motor vehicle is being registered for a period of less than a full year, the uninsured motor vehicle fee exclusive of any nonrefundable portion must be prorated to conform to the registration period. This uninsured motor vehicle fee shall be increased annually based upon and in relation to the average rate level increases for private passenger automobile insurance coverages by insurers in this State. The director of the Department of Insurance, by annual order, will set this exact fee. The application for registering an uninsured vehicle must have the following statements printed on or attached to the first page of the form, boldface, twelve point type: "THIS $550 FEE IS NOT AN INSURANCE PREMIUM AND YOU ARE NOT PURCHASING ANY INSURANCE BY PAYING THIS FEE. THIS $550 UNINSURED MOTORIST FEE IS FOR THE PRIVILEGE TO DRIVE AND OPERATE AN UNINSURED MOTOR VEHICLE ON THE SOUTH CAROLINA ROADS." This uninsured motorist notice required by this section must also be given to the person registering an uninsured motor vehicle. The director shall prescribe the exact format of this notice by regulation and shall adjust the amount of this fee annually as part of the order by the director of the Department of Insurance adjusting the uninsured motorist fee in relation to the average rate level increases for private passenger automobile insurance coverages by insurers in this State. Every person applying for registration of a motor vehicle and declaring it to be an insured motor vehicle, under the penalties set forth in Section 56-10-520, shall execute and furnish to the director his certificate that the motor vehicle is an insured motor vehicle as defined by the laws of this State, or that the director has issued to its owner, in accordance with Section 56-9-60, a certificate of self-insurance applicable to the vehicle sought to be registered. The director, or his designee, may require any registered owner of a motor vehicle declared to be insured or any applicant for registration of a motor vehicle to be an insured to submit a certificate of insurance on a form prescribed by the director. The director must forward the certificate of insurance or bond to the insurance company or surety company, whichever is applicable, for verification as to whether the policy or bond named in the certificate is currently in force. At that time, and not later than thirty days following receipt of the certificate of insurance, the insurance company or surety company must cause to be filed with the director a written notice if the policy or bond was not applicable as to the named insured. The director must prescribe the manner in which the written notice must be made. The refusal or neglect of any owner within thirty days to submit the certificate of insurance when required by the director or his designee or the notification by the insurance company or surety company that the policy or bond named in the certificate of insurance is not in effect, must require the director to suspend any driver's license and all registration certificates and license plates issued to the owner of the motor vehicle until the person:

(1) has paid to the director of the Department of Public Safety a fee of three hundred dollars to be disposed of as provided for in Sections 56-10-550 and 56-10-552 with respect to the motor vehicle determined to be uninsured; and

(2) furnishes proof of financial responsibility for the future in the manner prescribed in Section 56-10-10, et seq. of this chapter. An order of suspension required by this section is not effective until the director has offered the person an opportunity for an administrative hearing to show cause why the order should not be enforced. Notice of the opportunity for an administrative hearing may be included in the order of suspension. When three years have elapsed from the effective date of the suspension required in this section, the director may relieve the person of the requirement of furnishing proof of future financial responsibility. If the director determines that the fee applicable to the registration of an uninsured motor vehicle has been paid on the vehicle in question on or before the date that the insurance certificate was requested, no suspension action must be taken. The director shall suspend the driver's license and all registration certificates and license plates of any person on receiving a record of his conviction of a violation of any provisions of Section 56-10-520, but the director shall dispense with the suspension when the person is convicted for a violation of Section 56-10-520 and the department's records show conclusively that the motor vehicle was insured or that the fee applicable to the registration of an uninsured motor vehicle has been paid by the owner before the date and time of the alleged offense.

SECTION 56-10-520. Operating or permitting operation of motor vehicle without first paying uninsured motor vehicle fee; misdemeanor violation; record of conviction for violations of this section; suspension of license, registration certificates and license plates.

A person who owns an uninsured motor vehicle:

(1) licensed in the State; or

(2) subject to registration in the State;

who operates or permits the operation of that motor vehicle without first having paid to the director the uninsured motor vehicle fee required by Section 56-10-510, to be disposed of as provided by Section 56-10-550, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.

A person who is the operator of such an uninsured motor vehicle and not the titled owner, who knows that the required fee has not been paid to the director, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.

The director or his designee, having reason to believe that a motor vehicle is being operated or has been operated on any specified date, may require the owner of such motor vehicle to submit the certificate of insurance provided for by Section 56-10-510. The refusal or neglect of the owner who has not, before the date of operation, paid the uninsured motor vehicle fee required by Section 56-10-510 as to such motor vehicle, to furnish such certificate must be prima facie evidence that the motor vehicle was an uninsured motor vehicle at the time of such operation. A person who presents or causes to be presented to the director a false certificate that a motor vehicle is an insured motor vehicle or false evidence that a motor vehicle sought to be registered is an insured motor vehicle, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

However, the foregoing portions of this section must not be applicable if it is established that the owner had good cause to believe and did believe that such motor vehicle was an insured motor vehicle, in which event the provisions of Section 56-10-245 must be applicable.

Abstracts of records of conviction, as defined in this title, of any violation of any of the provisions of this section must be forwarded to the director as prescribed by Section 56-9-330. The director shall suspend the driver's license and all registration certificates and license plates of any titled owner of an uninsured motor vehicle upon receiving a record of his conviction of a violation of any provisions of this section, and he shall not thereafter reissue the driver's license and the registration certificates and license plates issued in the name of such person until such person pays the fee applicable to the registration of an uninsured motor vehicle as prescribed in Section 56-10-510 and furnishes proof of future financial responsibility as prescribed by this section. Notice of such suspension shall be made in the form provided for in Section 56-1-465. However, when three years have elapsed from the date of the suspension herein required, the director may relieve such person of the requirement of furnishing proof of future financial responsibility. When such suspension results from a conviction for presenting or causing to be presented to the director a false certificate as to whether a motor vehicle is an insured motor vehicle or false evidence that any motor vehicle sought to be registered is insured, then the director shall not thereafter reissue the driver's license and the registration certificates and license plates issued in the name of such person so convicted for a period of one hundred eighty days from the date of such order of suspension, and only then when all other provisions of law have been complied with by such person. The director shall suspend the driver's license of any person who is the operator but not the titled owner of a motor vehicle upon receiving a record of his conviction of a violation of any provisions of this section, and he shall not thereafter reissue the driver's license until thirty days from the date of such order of suspension.

SECTION 56-10-530. Involvement in accident resulting in death, injury or property damage when uninsured motor vehicle fee unpaid; suspension of driver's license, license plates and registration certificates; administrative hearing.

When it appears to the director from the records of his office that an uninsured motor vehicle as defined in Section 56-9-20, subject to registration in the State, is involved in a reportable accident in the State resulting in death, injury, or property damage with respect to which motor vehicle the owner thereof has not paid the uninsured motor vehicle fee as prescribed in Section 56-10-510, the director shall, in addition to enforcing the applicable provisions of Section 56-10-10, et seq. of this chapter, suspend such owner's driver's license and all of his license plates and registration certificates until such person has complied with those provisions of law and has paid to the director of the Department of Public Safety a reinstatement fee as provided by Section 56-10-510, to be disposed of as provided by Section 56-10-550, with respect to the motor vehicle involved in the accident and furnishes proof of future financial responsibility in the manner prescribed in Section 56-9-350, et seq. However, no order of suspension required by this section must become effective until the director has offered the person an opportunity for an administrative hearing to show cause why the order should not be enforced. Notice of the opportunity for an administrative hearing may be included in the order of suspension. Notice of such suspension shall be made in the form provided for in Section 56-1-465. However, when three years have elapsed from the effective date of the suspension herein required, the director may relieve such person of the requirement of furnishing proof of future financial responsibility. The presentation by a person subject to the provisions of this section of a certificate of insurance, executed by an agent or representative of an insurance company qualified to do business in this State, showing that on the date and at the time of the accident the vehicle was an insured motor vehicle as herein defined or, presentation by such person of evidence that the additional fee applicable to the registration of an uninsured motor vehicle had been paid to the department before the date and time of the accident, is sufficient bar to the suspension provided for in this section.

SECTION 56-10-535. Conviction of certain traffic violations; requirement of furnishing proof of financial responsibility.

The director, upon receiving notice at the time of application or at any time during participation in the fund that a titled owner of a motor vehicle has been convicted of one of the following violations: disobedience of any official traffic device; failure to stop for law enforcement officer when signaled; disobedience to any officer directing traffic; failure to stop for a school bus; leaving the scene of an accident where injury to a person or damage to property results; theft or unlawful taking of a vehicle; racing on public highways; driving under the influence of intoxicating liquor or narcotic drugs or where injury to a person of over six hundred dollars per person or damage to property of the insured or other person of over one thousand dollars results; reckless driving where injury to a person of over six hundred dollars per person or damage to property of the insured or other person of over one thousand dollars results, homicide or assault arising out of the operation of a motor vehicle; any felony involving the use of a motor vehicle; the transporting of illegal whiskey or unlawful drugs or other controlled or narcotic substances; reckless homicide; wilful making of false statements in the application for license or registration; impersonating an applicant for license or registration or procuring a license or registration through impersonation whether for himself or another; any three or more moving traffic convictions; any two or more accidents for which the owner is responsible and where injury to a person of over six hundred dollars per person or damage to property of the insured or other persons of over one thousand dollars results, or if any household driver has been licensed for less than three years; then the director shall require the owner to furnish proof of financial responsibility in the manner prescribed by the director.

However, when three years have elapsed from the effective date of any conviction for the above offenses, the director may relieve such person of the requirement of furnishing proof of future financial responsibility.

SECTION 56-10-540. Other proof of financial responsibility; suspension and return of driver's license, registration, certificates, and license plates and decals.

Whenever any proof of financial responsibility filed by any person as required by this chapter no longer fulfills the purpose for which required, the director shall require other proof of financial responsibility as required by this chapter and shall suspend such person's driver's license, registration, certificates, and license plates and decals pending the furnishing of proof in a manner prescribed by the director. Notice of such suspension shall be made in the form provided for in Section 56-1-465.

A person whose driver's license or registration certificates, or license plates and decals have been suspended as provided in this chapter and have not been reinstated shall immediately return every such license, registration certificate, and set of license plates and decals held by him to the director. A person failing to comply with this requirement shall be guilty of a traffic infraction and, upon conviction, shall be punished as provided in Section 56-9-310, et seq.

SECTION 56-10-550. Deposit of funds collected in Uninsured Motorists Fund.

Except as provided in Sections 56-10-552 and 56-10-554, funds collected by the director of the Department of Public Safety under the provisions of this chapter must be placed on deposit with the State Treasurer and held in a special fund to be known as the "Uninsured Motorists Fund" to be disbursed as provided by law. The director of the Department of Insurance as provided in Sections 38-77-151 and 38-77-154 may expend monies from such funds for the administration of Title 38.

SECTION 56-10-551. Cancellation or termination of insurance policy certified under this chapter; notice to director.

When any insurance policy certified under this chapter is canceled or terminated, the insurer shall report the fact to the director within fifteen days after the cancellation on a form prescribed by the director.

SECTION 56-10-552. Uninsured Enforcement Fund; use of reinstatement fee.

(A) All funds collected as provided in Section 38-73-470 must be directed to the director of the Department of Public Safety for the establishment and maintenance of a special fund, to be known as the "Uninsured Enforcement Fund", to be used by the Department of Public Safety for the purpose of enforcement and administration of Article 3, Chapter 10, Title 56.

(B) Fifty percent of the reinstatement fee as provided by Section 56-10-510(1) must be transferred by the Department of Public Safety and recorded to the Uninsured Enforcement Fund to be used by the Department of Public Safety as provided by subsection (A) of this section. The remaining fifty percent of the reinstatement fee as provided by Section 56-10-510 must be retained in the Uninsured Motorist Fund to be used as provided in Sections 56-10-550, 38-77-151, and 38-77-154.

SECTION 56-10-553. Collection of data and maintenance of statistics; implementation of programs designed to ensure compliance with financial responsibility laws; request forms for random verification of liability insurance coverage; annual report.

(A) The Department of Public Safety must collect data and maintain statistics on the total number of vehicles registered in the State as of June thirtieth of each year, the number of motorists who voluntarily paid the five hundred and fifty dollar fee at the time of registration during the fiscal year, the number of motorists who paid the penalty fee after being detected by the Department of Public Safety as being uninsured during the fiscal year, the number of certificates of insurance filed during the fiscal year, the net revenue collections for these fees by the fiscal year, the net funds available in the Uninsured Motorist Fund, and the net funds received from the Department of Insurance from the uninsured motorist fee during the fiscal year.

(B) The Department of Public Safety must implement programs designed to ensure full compliance with the financial responsibility laws. These programs must include random sampling of licensed drivers with moving violations requesting proof of insurance. Other programs may be added.

(C) The Department of Public Safety must on a daily basis select a computerized random sample of five hundred of the registered vehicles in the State and mail to each owner a written request form to be completed by him and his insurance company or the agent issuing the policy to verify liability insurance coverage. The form must be in a manner prescribed by regulation of the department. The completed and verified form must be returned by the owner to the department within fifteen days from the date he receives it. Failure to return the form verified in the proper manner is prima facie evidence that the vehicle is uninsured, and vehicles determined to be uninsured under this section are subject to the provisions of state law dealing with uninsured vehicles.

(D) The Department of Public Safety must provide an annual report to the General Assembly containing the information required in subsections (A) and (B) of this section.

SECTION 56-10-554. Recoupment Fund; recoupment of facility assessments or losses; discontinuance of collection for recoupment of facilities losses.

As provided in Section 56-10-510, fifty dollars of the uninsured motor vehicle fee paid per vehicle is nonrefundable and must be used to recoup assessments or losses of the South Carolina Reinsurance Facility. Upon collection by the director of the Department of Public Safety from any person registering an uninsured vehicle, this money must be placed by the director of the Department of Public Safety on deposit with the State Treasurer to be held in a special account called the "Recoupment Fund", payable on a quarterly basis, to provide for the recoupment of facility assessments or losses. Upon final recoupment of facility losses as the South Carolina Reinsurance Facility ceases to exist, the director of the Department of Insurance shall by order (1) set the uninsured motor vehicle fee which does not include the fifty dollars dedicated for the recoupment of facility assessments or losses; (2) inform the director of the Department of Public Safety that the facility assessments or losses have been recouped and when the Department of Public Safety must cease collection from every person registering an uninsured motor vehicle, as well as transmittal to the State Treasurer, of this fifty dollar portion; and (3) direct the State Treasurer to transfer any used portion of the "Recoupment Fund" to the "Uninsured Motorist Fund". The director of the Department of Public Safety must cease collection of this fifty dollars as part of the uninsured motor vehicle fee which has been dedicated for the recoupment of facility assessments or losses as provided in the order issued by the director of the Department of Insurance.





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