Did you know three new Virginia driving laws go into effect on July 1, 2021? This new legislation includes updates to the law banning handheld cellphones while driving, new requirements for student driver safety courses and an increase in the minimum coverage limits for vehicle liability insurance.
Driving Law #1: Update to Use of Handheld Cellphone Ban
Those who hold a provisional driver’s license will no longer be able to operate a vehicle while using a wireless communication device. All drivers, including those with a learner’s permit or restricted license, may not hold a cellphone while operating a vehicle.
Driving Law #2: Additional Instruction Required for Student Driver Safety Courses
All driver education programs must include in the agenda the dangers of distracted driving and speeding. The Department of Education also developed an application process where students will be screened for having a valid driver’s license or privilege card before being issued a pass to park a vehicle on high school property.
Driving Law #3: Increase in Minimum Limits of Liability Insurance Coverage
Liability insurance coverage for vehicles has now increased the minimum amounts for policies, effective between January 1, 2022 and January 1, 2025. These increases go from $25,000 to $30,000 in cases of bodily injury or death to one person and from $50,000 to $60,000 in cases of bodily injury or death of two or more persons from any one accident. For policies effective after January 1, 2025, the liability amounts increase to $50,000 in cases of bodily injury or death to one person, $100,000 in cases of bodily injury or death of two or more persons from any one accident, and from $20,000 to $25,000 for injury or destruction of property of others as a result of any one accident. Additionally, this new Virginia driving law requires that self-insured taxicab operators maintain a policy against uninsured and underinsured drivers with limits of $25,000, $50,000, and $20,000, respectively, for each vehicle.
This bill has a delayed effective date of January 1, 2022.