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FRIDAY, JUNE 8, 2007
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Legislature OKs higher insurance requirements

MONTGOMERY (AP) — The Alabama Legislature has agreed overwhelmingly to raise the minimum amount of liability insurance that motorists must buy.

The Alabama House voted 96-0 Thursday for legislation raising the minimum amount of insurance to put Alabama in line with about half the country. The bill, which passed the Senate 31-0 last week, now goes to Gov. Bob Riley.

Riley’s communications director, Jeff Emerson, said the governor needs to study the bill and has not indicated whether he will sign the bill into law.

The Legislature passed a law eight years ago requiring motorists to carry liability insurance.

The minimum amount has been $20,000 for a single injury or death, $40,000 for multiple injuries or deaths, and $10,000 for property damage.

The legislation raises the requirements to $25,000 in coverage for a single injury or death, $50,000 for multiple injuries or deaths, and $25,000 for property damage.

The legislation was a compromise between plaintiff lawyers, who wanted motorists to carry twice that much, and insurance companies, which said raising the limits too high would increase the number of drivers who risk driving without coverage.

The bill’s sponsor, Sen. Roger Bedford, D-Russellville, said the old limits were long outdated.

Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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