What follows is the full text of the bill. Autobody News has prepared an attention-getting sign with the text of this important bill. The sign can be posted in a body shop as proof that a customer has the right to choose where his or her vehicle is repaired. For copies of the sign, fax a request to Autobody News at (760) 721-0253 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Be sure to include your mailing address.
House Bill 2468
Amending Section 20-456, Arizona Revised Statutes; Amending Title 20, Chapter 2, Article 6, Arizona Revised Statutes, by adding Section 20-468; Relating to Motor Vehicle Insurers.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Arizona:
Section 1. Section 20-456, Arizona Revised Statutes, is amended to read:
20-456. Cease and desist order for defined or prohibited practices; civil penalty
A. If after a hearing the director finds that the person charged has engaged or is engaging in any act or practice defined in or prohibited under this article as an illegal or unfair method of competition or an unfair or deceptive act or practice, the director shall order the person to cease and desist from the proscribed acts or practices.
B. If the act or practice is a violation of section 20-443, 20-443.01, 20-444, 20-445, 20-446, 20-447, 20-448, 20-448.01, 20- 448.02, 20-449, 20-451, 20-452 or 20-467 or a general business practice of committing or performing acts or omissions proscribed by SECTIONS 20-461 AND 20-468, the director may also impose a civil penalty of not more than one thousand dollars for each act or violation but not to exceed an aggregate penalty of ten thousand dollars unless the person intentionally violates any section enumerated in this subsection, in which case the director may impose a civil penalty of up to five thousand dollars for each act or violation but not to exceed an aggregate penalty of fifty thousand dollars in any six month period.
C. No order of the director pursuant to this section or order of a court to enforce it, or holding of a hearing, may in any manner relieve or absolve any person affected by the order or hearing from any other liability, penalty or forfeiture under law.
Sec. 2. Title 20, chapter 2, article 6, Arizona Revised Statutes, is amended by adding section 20-468, to read:
20-468. Policyholder choice of repair facility; conditions; cease and desist order; civil penalty
A. FOR REPAIR FACILITIES OTHER THAN GLASS REPAIR FACILITIES AND SUBJECT TO THE RIGHTS OF AN INSURER TO RECEIVE NOTICE OF LOSS OR CLAIM CONSISTENT WITH THE PROVISIONS OF ITS POLICY, A PERSON IN THIS STATE HAS THE RIGHT TO CHOOSE ANY REPAIR FACILITY FOR THE REPAIR OF A MOTOR VEHICLE LOSS. IF AN INSURER PROVIDES INFORMATION ABOUT A REPAIR FACILITY, THE INSURER SHALL INFORM THE PERSON OF THIS RIGHT AT THE SAME TIME AS MAKING THE RECOMMENDATION OR PROVIDING THE INFORMATION. THIS SECTION DOES NOT CREATE A PRIVATE RIGHT OR CAUSE OF ACTION TO OR ON BEHALF OF ANY PERSON.
B. IF AN INSURED OR CLAIMANT SELECTS A REPAIR FACILITY TO REPAIR THE INSURED'S OR CLAIMANT'S MOTOR VEHICLE IN WHICH THE INSURER OWNS AN INTEREST IN THAT REPAIR FACILITY, THE ADJUSTER FOR THE MOTOR VEHICLE SHALL NOT BE EMPLOYED BY THE REPAIR FACILITY OR HAVE ANY DIRECT AUTHORITY OVER THAT FACILITY'S RECOMMENDATIONS OR DECISIONS RELATING TO THE REPAIR OF THE INSURED'S OR CLAIMANT'S MOTOR VEHICLE.
Sec. 3. Tied repair facility reports
A. Through January 10, 2008, a repair facility in which an insurer owns an interest in the repair facility and that engages in the business of repairing or replacing the nonmechanical exterior or interior body parts of a damaged motor vehicle, on or before the tenth day following each calendar year, shall file with the director of the department of insurance:
1. A statement delineating the number of motor vehicles repaired and the dollar values of those repairs by each such repair facility for the previous calendar year for which the motor vehicle owners were insured by or claimants of the insurer that owns an interest in the repair facility.
2. The total number of motor vehicles repaired and the dollar values by that repair facility that the motor vehicle owners were insured by or claimants of the insurer that owns an interest in the repair facility as a percentage of the total number of motor vehicles repaired or the total dollar values in that repair facility for that calendar year.
B. The department of insurance shall maintain the information received pursuant to subsection A of this section as confidential information. The department shall make this information available to the president of the senate or the speaker of the house of representatives upon request.