(Period Covered: 1/1/1998 through 1/1/2007)
This policy topic covers laws that prohibit insurance carriers from excluding coverage where claims arise from collisions resulting from driver intoxication.
In 1950, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) developed a model law, entitled the Uniform Accident and Sickness Policy Provision Law. If enacted by the States, it would permit insurers to include a provision in insurance policies that reads as follows:
The insurer shall not be liable for any loss sustained or contracted in consequence of the insured's being intoxicated or under the influence of any narcotic unless administered on the advice of a physician.
A separate category of insurance exclusion concerns motor vehicle collisions. In some States, insurance statutes and regulations permit companies that provide motor vehicle insurance to exclude losses sustained by motorists if the driver of the insured vehicle was intoxicated or under the influence of narcotics. In contrast, in other States, insurers are prohibited from using such exclusions.
Under Vehicular Insurance Exclusion, a driver of an insured vehicle who is involved in a collision while intoxicated or under the influence of alcohol, within the meaning of applicable State law, may not be covered for his or her own injuries or for property damage to the insured vehicle resulting from the collision. Variations across State provisions could conceivably exclude drivers, passengers, or third parties from coverage for personal injury and/or property damage, although presently these States exclude only personal injury benefits to the driver who operates the insured vehicle while intoxicated. Coverage variations within States are also possible because each insurance company is permitted to exclude coverage in situations of intoxication, but is not required to do so. Insurance companies may vary in the extent to which they exclude coverage in situations of intoxication.
In some jurisdictions, insurance companies are expressly prohibited from excluding coverage where claims arise from collisions resulting from driver intoxication. In those cases, drivers, passengers, and/or third parties (depending on the extent of the statutory prohibition and the specific coverage of particular policies) will be covered for property damage and/or personal injury claims even if alcohol was a factor in the collisions.
 National Association of Insurance Commissioners, 1950. Proceedings of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, 1950. 81st Annual Session, Québec, Canada, June 131950-2,161,950. 1950 NAIC Proc. 398.