Mandatory liability insurance will likely need to be paid for more types of vehicles. It is now expected to apply to electric scooters, segways, snowmobiles, and motorized golf carts. The obligation to pay this liability insurance for operating a vehicle will also shift from the owner to the actual operator. This is outlined in a proposal for a new law, which the Chamber of Deputies supported in the initial round on Tuesday. After lengthy discussions on the program, politicians approved several norms in the first reading on Tuesday evening.
The regulation transposes the European directive into Czech law and is expected to be effective from Christmas. The law still needs to go through readings in the Chamber of Deputies, final voting, then the Senate, and obtain the President’s signature. It is set to take effect from December 23.
The law, which deputies approved around nine o’clock in the evening, redefines the concept of a vehicle, expanding the range of vehicles for which mandatory liability insurance must be paid. This obligation will now apply to all motor vehicles with a design speed exceeding 25 kilometers per hour and to motor vehicles with a design speed exceeding 14 kilometers per hour and weighing more than 25 kilograms. The law also establishes that motor vehicles are those where the engine is the primary source of propulsion.
Suppose a police officer discovers during a check that a vehicle subject to mandatory insurance does not have the required liability insurance. In that case, the officer will have the right to order the driver to park such a vehicle.
Deputies approve the program after five hours of deliberation
Exceptions will be made for electric bicycles, as their primary energy source is pedaling, not just an auxiliary motor. Exceptions will also apply to garden tractors that operate exclusively on private property. As soon as they venture onto the road, they become vehicles and must be insured, as the Ministry of Finance noted.
According to the law, mandatory liability insurance should be paid by the operator of the vehicle, not its owner. According to the draft law’s explanatory report, this change is based on negative experiences with the current legal regulation in dealing with offenses, termination of insurance, or the use of bonus and malus systems in determining insurance premiums.
The new law also abolishes the so-called green card for providing paid compulsory liability insurance in the Czech Republic. According to the explanatory report, the card loses its significance given the digitalization of insurance control systems. The green card will now serve only as an international proof of liability insurance payment if drivers travel abroad.
The law is expected to increase the minimum insurance coverage limits in the event of personal injury, death, or property damage. In all cases, the limit will be raised from 25 million Czech crowns to 50 million Czech crowns. The limitation applies to each affected person in the case of personal injury or death. In the case of property damage, the limit applies to each separate event regardless of the number of damaged parties.
Wave of Approvals After Five Hours of Deliberation
Deputies approved the law after nine o’clock in the evening as they were allowed to deliberate into the night. Before that, they spent five hours discussing the program during the day. During the discussion, the opposition proposed addressing issues such as the encrypted phone of Minister of the Interior Vít Rakušan.
After approving the program, additional norms were passed, such as the expedited proceedings for the electronic system of legislative creation, e-Legislativa. It is expected to be launched in the pilot operation next year.
Another bill, which passed the first reading, regulates the conditions of telemedicine and the rules for maintaining electronic health records.