Missouri Revised Statutes Title XIX. Motor Vehicles, Watercraft and Aviation § 303.025. Duty to maintain financial responsibility, residents and nonresidents, misdemeanor penalty for failure to maintain--exception, methods--court to notify department of revenue, additional punishment, right of appeal

1. No owner of a motor vehicle registered in this state, or required to be registered in this state, shall operate, register or maintain registration of a motor vehicle, or permit another person to operate such vehicle, unless the owner maintains the financial responsibility which conforms to the requirements of the laws of this state.  No nonresident shall operate or permit another person to operate in this state a motor vehicle registered to such nonresident unless the nonresident maintains the financial responsibility which conforms to the requirements of the laws of the nonresident's state of residence.  Furthermore, no person shall operate a motor vehicle owned by another with the knowledge that the owner has not maintained financial responsibility unless such person has financial responsibility which covers the person's operation of the other's vehicle;  however, no owner or nonresident shall be in violation of this subsection if he or she fails to maintain financial responsibility on a motor vehicle which is inoperable or being stored and not in operation.  The director may prescribe rules and regulations for the implementation of this section.

2. A motor vehicle owner shall maintain the owner's financial responsibility in a manner provided for in section 303.160 , or with a motor vehicle liability policy which conforms to the requirements of the laws of this state.  A nonresident motor vehicle owner shall maintain the owner's financial responsibility which conforms to the requirements of the laws of the nonresident's state of residence.

3. Any person who violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor.  A first violation of this section shall be punishable as a class D misdemeanor.  A second or subsequent violation of this section shall be punishable by imprisonment in the county jail for a term not to exceed fifteen days and/or a fine not to exceed five hundred dollars.  Prior pleas of guilty and prior findings of guilty shall be pleaded and proven in the same manner as required by section 558.021 .  However, no person shall be found guilty of violating this section if the operator demonstrates to the court that he or she met the financial responsibility requirements of this section at the time the peace officer, commercial vehicle enforcement officer or commercial vehicle inspector wrote the citation.  In addition to any other authorized punishment, the court shall notify the director of revenue of any person convicted pursuant to this section and shall do one of the following:

(1) Enter an order suspending the driving privilege as of the date of the court order.  If the court orders the suspension of the driving privilege, the court shall require the defendant to surrender to it any driver's license then held by such person.  The length of the suspension shall be as prescribed in subsection 2 of section 303.042 .  The court shall forward to the director of revenue the order of suspension of driving privilege and any license surrendered within ten days;

(2) Forward the record of the conviction for an assessment of four points;

(3) In lieu of an assessment of points, render an order of supervision as provided in section 302.303 .  An order of supervision shall not be used in lieu of points more than one time in any thirty-six-month period.  Every court having jurisdiction pursuant to the provisions of this section shall forward a record of conviction to the Missouri state highway patrol, or at the written direction of the Missouri state highway patrol, to the department of revenue, in a manner approved by the director of the department of public safety.  The director shall establish procedures for the record keeping and administration of this section;  or

(4) For a nonresident, suspend the nonresident's driving privileges in this state in accordance with section 303.030 and notify the official in charge of the issuance of licenses and registration certificates in the state in which such nonresident resides in accordance with section 303.080 .

4. Nothing in sections 303.010 to 303.050 , 303.060 , 303.140 , 303.220 , 303.290 , 303.330 and 303.370 shall be construed as prohibiting the department of insurance, financial institutions and professional registration from approving or authorizing those exclusions and limitations which are contained in automobile liability insurance policies and the uninsured motorist provisions of automobile liability insurance policies.

5. If a court enters an order of suspension, the offender may appeal such order directly pursuant to chapter 512 and the provisions of section 302.311 shall not apply.


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