The person on whose behalf such proof was filed has died or has become permanently incapacitated to operate a motor vehicle; or
The person who has given proof surrenders the person's license to the secretary.
Subject to the exceptions set forth in sub. (2)
, the secretary shall, upon request, consent to the immediate cancellation of any bond or certification of insurance, return to the person entitled thereto any money or securities deposited pursuant to this chapter as proof of financial responsibility and shall waive any requirement of the filing of proof of financial responsibility under s. 344.18 (1m)
or 344.19 (3m)
whenever any of the following events has occurred:
The period during which proof of financial responsibility is required has expired.
The person who has given proof surrenders all of the person's registrations to the secretary.
The secretary shall not consent to the cancellation of any bond or the return of any money or securities if any action for damages upon a liability covered by such proof is then pending or any judgment upon any such liability is then unsatisfied, or if the person who filed the bond or deposited the money or securities has, within one year immediately preceding the request for cancellation of the bond or return of the money or securities, been involved as an operator or owner in any motor vehicle accident resulting in injury or damage to the person or property of others. An affidavit of the applicant as to the nonexistence of such facts, or that the person has been released from all liability, or has been finally adjudicated not to be liable for such injury or damages is sufficient evidence thereof in the absence of evidence to the contrary in the records of the secretary.
Whenever any person whose proof has been canceled or returned under sub. (1) (c)
desires reinstatement of that person's operating privilege prior to the expiration of the period during which proof of financial responsibility is required, that person shall again furnish proof of financial responsibility. Thereupon that person's operating privilege is reinstated as provided in s. 343.38
Whenever any person whose proof has been canceled or returned under sub. (1m) (b)
desires reinstatement of his or her registrations prior to the expiration of the period during which proof of financial responsibility is required, he or she shall again furnish proof of financial responsibility. Thereupon his or her registrations may be renewed or reinstated upon payment of the fee required under s. 341.36 (1m)
Submission of certifications and recertifications by insurers.
If the sum of certifications and recertifications under ss. 344.31
that are submitted by an insurer to the department in any year exceeds 1,000, the insurer shall pay to the department a transaction fee of $1.50 per certification or recertification that is not transmitted electronically to the department. The department shall promulgate rules establishing procedures for the collection of transaction fees under this section.
History: 1997 a. 27
; 2009 a. 245
See also ch. Trans 197
, Wis. adm. code.
PENALTIES FOR VIOLATIONS OF CHAPTER
Surrender of license and registration upon suspension. 344.45(1)(1)
Whenever a person's operating privilege or registration is suspended under this chapter, the department may order the person to surrender to the department his or her operator's license and the registration plates of the vehicle or vehicles for which registration was suspended. If the person fails immediately to return the operator's license or registration plates to the department, the department may direct a traffic officer to take possession thereof and return them to the department.
Any person who intentionally fails or refuses to return a license and registration plate or plates as required by this section may be required to forfeit not more than $100.
Transfer of vehicle ownership to defeat purpose of chapter. 344.46(1)(1)
No owner of a motor vehicle involved in an accident in this state which is reportable under s. 346.70
shall transfer the ownership or registration of any vehicle whose registration is subject to suspension or revocation under this chapter until all of the applicable provisions of this chapter has been complied with or until the secretary is satisfied that such transfer is proposed in good faith and not for the purpose or with the effect of defeating the purposes of this chapter.
Any person violating this section may be required to forfeit not more than $200.
This section does not apply to or affect the registration of any vehicle sold by a person who, under the terms or conditions of any written instrument giving a right of repossession, has exercised such right and has repossessed such vehicle from a person whose registration has been suspended or revoked under this chapter.
Forge or, without authority, sign any notice provided for in s. 344.14
or 344.15 (4)
, or both, to the effect that a policy or bond is in effect or, knowing or having reason to believe that the notice has been forged or signed without authority, file or offer the notice for filing; or
Forge or, without authority, sign any evidence of proof of financial responsibility or, knowing or having reason to believe that such evidence has been forged or signed without authority, file or offer such evidence for filing.
Sign or file the affidavit mentioned in s. 344.15 (4)
, knowing that it contains a false statement.
Any person violating this section may be fined not more than $10,000 or imprisoned for not more than 9 months or both.
FINANCIAL RESPONSIBILITY FOR RENTED AND HUMAN SERVICES VEHICLES
Financial responsibility for domestic rented or leased vehicles. 344.51(1g)(a)
“Lessor" means a person who, for compensation, leases a motor vehicle to a lessee to be operated by or with the consent of the lessee or who acquires a contract for the leasing of a motor vehicle from another person.
“Motor vehicle" means a self-propelled vehicle.
“Rental company" means a person who, for compensation, rents a motor vehicle to a renter to be operated by or with the consent of the renter or who acquires a contract for the renting of a motor vehicle from another person.
No lessor or rental company may for compensation rent or lease any motor vehicle unless there is filed with the department on a form prescribed by the department a certificate for a good and sufficient bond or policy of insurance issued by an insurer authorized to do an automobile liability insurance or surety business in this state. The certificate shall provide that the insurer which issued it will be liable for damages caused by the negligent operation of the motor vehicle in the amounts set forth in s. 344.01 (2) (d)
. No lessor or rental company complying with this subsection, and no lessor or rental company entering into or acquiring an interest in any contract for the rental or leasing of a motor vehicle for which any other lessor or rental company has complied with this subsection, is liable for damages caused by the negligent operation of the motor vehicle by another person.
Any lessor or rental company failing to comply with this section is directly liable for damages caused by the negligence of the person operating such rented or leased vehicle, but such liability may not exceed the limits set forth in s. 344.01 (2) (d)
with respect to the acceptable limits of liability when furnishing proof of financial responsibility.
Any person violating this section may be required to forfeit not more than $200.
A lessor is not liable to the lessee's insurer for monies that the insurer paid to a victim of the lessee's negligence. American Family Mutual Insurance Co. v. Reciprocal Ins. Service Exchange Mgt. Co. 111 Wis. 2d 308
, 330 N.W.2d 223
(Ct. App. 1983).
When a lessee's insurance was insufficient to cover all damages, the lessor's errors and omissions policy was required to cover remaining damages. Germanotta v. National Indemnity Co. 119 Wis. 2d 293
, 349 N.W.2d 733
(Ct. App. 1984).
No statute requires a self-insured entity under s. 344.16 to provide uninsured motorist coverage as part of the optional insurance it offers to its customers. Prophet v. Enterprise Rent-A-Car Company, Inc. 2000 WI App 171
, 238 Wis. 2d 150
, 617 N.W.2d 225
A car-rental company issued a certificate of self-insurance under s. 344.16 and subject to liability limits under s. 344.01 (2) (d) and this section was not a self-insurer for purposes of an underinsured motorist clause that excluded coverage for a vehicle owned or operated by a “self-insurer." Bethke v. Auto-Owners Insurance Company, 2013 WI 16
, 345 Wis. 2d 533
, 825 N.W.2d 482
Financial responsibility for foreign rented vehicles. 344.52(1g)(1g)
In this section, “motor vehicle" means a self-propelled vehicle.
Whenever any motor vehicle rented for compensation outside this state is operated in this state, the lessor of the motor vehicle is directly liable for all damages to persons or property caused by the negligent operation of the rented vehicle unless, at the time when the damage or injury occurs, the operation of the rented vehicle is effectively covered by a policy of insurance that provides coverage at least in the amounts specified in s. 344.01 (2) (d)
for property damage, personal injury, or death suffered by any person on account of the negligent operation of the rented vehicle. The amount of liability imposed upon the lessor by this section in the absence of insurance coverage shall not exceed the limits set forth in s. 344.01 (2) (d)
with respect to the acceptable limits of liability when furnishing proof of financial responsibility. The fact that the rented vehicle is operated in this state contrary to any understanding or agreement with the lessor is not a defense to any liability imposed by this section.
If a motor vehicle rented for compensation outside this state is operated in this state, the lessor of the vehicle is considered to have irrevocably appointed the secretary as the agent or attorney upon whom legal process may be served in any action or proceeding against the lessor or the lessor's personal representative, successors, or assigns, growing out of the operation of the rented motor vehicle in this state, which appointment is binding upon the lessor's personal representative, successors, or assigns. The operation of the rented motor vehicle in this state is a signification of the lessor's agreement that legal process or notice may be served upon the lessor or the lessor's personal representative, successors, or assigns and that process or notice so served has the same legal force as if personally served upon them in this state.
Service of process or notice under par. (a)
shall be made as provided in s. 345.09
. This section does not affect the right to serve process or notice on the nonresident operator of the rented motor vehicle as provided in s. 345.09
Unlike the domestic financial responsibility statute, s. 344.51, this section does not require a lessor to file a bond or insurance policy with the state, but instead requires that some insurance policy provide coverage up to the statutorily required amount. If such a policy exists, the lessor will be held directly liable for damages caused by the negligent operation of the vehicle up to the statutory amount. This section explicitly covers any motor vehicle rented outside this state but operated in this state. It is irrelevant that a vehicle was maintained and operated in Wisconsin because both statutes contemplate that possibility. Casper v. American International South Insurance Co. 2010 WI App 2
, 323 Wis. 2d 82
, 779 N.W.2d 445
, decided on other grounds 2011 WI 81
, 336 Wis. 2d 267
, 800 N.W.2d 880
Insurance for human service vehicles. 344.55(1)(1)
No motor vehicle may be used as a human service vehicle unless a policy of bodily injury and property damage liability insurance, issued by an insurer authorized to transact business in this state, is maintained thereon. The policy shall provide property damage liability coverage with a limit of not less than $10,000. The policy also shall provide bodily injury liability coverage with limits of not less than $75,000 for each person and, subject to such limit for each person, total limits as follows:
$150,000 for each accident for each motor vehicle having a seating capacity of 7 passengers or less.
$200,000 for each accident for each motor vehicle having a seating capacity of 8 to 15 passengers.
$250,000 for each accident for each motor vehicle having a seating capacity of 16 to 24 passengers.
$375,000 for each accident for each motor vehicle having a seating capacity of 25 to 36 passengers.
$500,000 for each accident for each motor vehicle having a seating capacity of 37 to 49 passengers.
$500,000 plus not less than $10,000 for each accident for each passenger seat accommodation for each motor vehicle having a seating capacity of 50 or more passengers.
The department may not issue registration plates for such a vehicle unless there is on file with the department a certificate of insurance showing that the vehicle is insured in compliance with sub. (1)
. No such policy may be terminated prior to its expiration or canceled for any reason unless a notice thereof is filed with the department at least 30 days prior to the date of termination or cancellation. The department shall suspend the registration of a vehicle on which the insurance policy has been terminated or canceled, effective on the date of termination or cancellation.
History: 1983 a. 175
; Stats. 1983 s. 344.55; 1997 a. 84
; 2009 a. 28
; 2011 a. 14
“Accident" means collision of a private passenger vehicle with another object or other upset of the private passenger vehicle not caused intentionally by the renter.
“Authorized driver" means, in connection with a private passenger vehicle under a rental agreement, all of the following:
The spouse of the renter, if the spouse is a licensed driver and meets any minimum age requirement in the rental agreement.
A person listed in the rental agreement as an authorized driver.
The renter's employer, employee or co-worker, if the employer, employee or co-worker engages in a business activity with the renter, is a licensed driver and meets the rental company's minimum age requirement.
A person who operates the private passenger vehicle during an emergency or while parking the private passenger vehicle at a commercial or private establishment.
“Damage waiver" means a contractual provision under which a rental company agrees for a charge not to hold a renter or authorized driver liable for damage or loss related to a private passenger vehicle rented by the renter.
“Private passenger vehicle" means a type 1 automobile.
“Rental agreement" means a written agreement setting forth the terms and conditions governing the use of a private passenger vehicle provided for rent by a rental company.
“Rental company" means a person in the business of providing private passenger vehicles for rent to the public.
“Renter" means the person who rents a private passenger vehicle from a rental company under a rental agreement.
History: 1989 a. 328
; 2005 a. 173
Applicability to rental agreements. 344.572(1)(1)
Except as provided in sub. (2)
, ss. 344.574
apply to all rental agreements concerning private passenger vehicles rented from locations in this state for a period of 30 consecutive days or less.
do not apply to a rental agreement under which a person rents from a motor vehicle dealer licensed under ss. 218.0101
a private passenger vehicle owned by the dealer if the private passenger vehicle is rented only for use while a vehicle owned or leased by the person or which the person has agreed to purchase is being serviced, repaired, manufactured or delivered.
History: 1989 a. 328
; 1999 a. 31
Limited liability for damage. 344.574(1)(1)
Damage to private passenger vehicle. 344.574(1)(a)
Unless a renter purchases a damage waiver offered in accordance with s. 344.576
, a rental company may hold the renter liable to the extent permitted under subs. (2)
for physical or mechanical damage to the rented private passenger vehicle that is caused by any of the following:
An accident occurring while the private passenger vehicle is under the rental agreement.
The renter or an authorized driver who is using the private passenger vehicle, intentionally or by his or her reckless or wanton misconduct.
Theft of the private passenger vehicle intentionally caused by the renter. A renter is presumed not to have caused the theft intentionally if all of the following apply:
The renter or authorized driver has possession of the ignition key furnished by the rental company or establishes that the ignition key furnished by the rental company was not in the vehicle at the time of the theft.