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Rs 32:397.1 Accident Reports; Citizens Right To Privacy

§397.1. Accident reports; citizens right to privacy

A. The Legislature of Louisiana hereby finds that the provisions of Title 44 of the Louisiana Revised Statutes of 1950, relating to public records, were enacted to serve the public purpose of providing the citizens of this state with access to information which affects the citizens of the state. The Legislature of Louisiana further finds that the salutory purpose which underlies the provisions of Title 44 has become subverted by certain businesses which use information which appears in the public record solely because a citizen had the misfortune to become involved in a traffic accident as a means of aggressively soliciting that citizen for the commercial gain of that business. The legislature further finds that this aggressive commercial solicitation violates the provisions of Article I, Section 5 of the Constitution of Louisiana, which establishes the right of the citizens of this state to be free from unreasonable invasions of privacy.

B. The Legislature of Louisiana hereby declares that the provisions of this Section are enacted for the purpose of implementing the right to privacy found in Article I, Section 5 of the Constitution of Louisiana, by establishing a procedure by which citizens who are involved in traffic accidents can prohibit commercial solicitation connected with that accident.

C. The office of motor vehicles shall establish a form which shall be made available, at cost, to all law enforcement agencies. The form shall provide each person who is involved in a traffic accident with a method of stating that the person does not wish to be solicited by specific commercial businesses. The businesses shall include but shall not be limited to attorneys, health care providers, motor vehicle repair businesses, and insurance businesses. The form shall allow the person who was involved in the accident to state that the person does not wish to be solicited by specific businesses or does not wish to be solicited by any businesses.

D. Each law enforcement officer who investigates and writes up a traffic accident shall furnish a form provided for in this Section to each person whose name appears in the accident report.

E. Each such form which is returned to the law enforcement officer shall be filed with the accident report.

F. Upon filing, the form shall become public record, and under the "public records doctrine" shall become binding on all businesses which are listed on the form.

G. When a form has been executed by a person who was involved in a traffic accident, and the form has been filed with an accident report, the solicitation of that citizen by a business with regard to any commercial activity which is reasonably related to the accident which is the subject of the report, in contravention of the statement on the form, is hereby declared to be an unreasonable invasion of privacy as denounced by the provisions of Article I, Section 5 of the Constitution of Louisiana, and is hereby prohibited.

H. Whoever violates the prohibition of Subsection G of this Section shall be fined not more than one thousand dollars, or imprisoned for not more than six months, or both.

I. In addition to the criminal penalties of Subsection H of this Section, a violation of the prohibition of Subsection G of this Section may be considered a violation of the ethical requirements of any profession or business which is regulated by a governing body which is created or recognized by law, and may subject the violator to sanctions by that governing body, including suspension or revocation of any license, permit, certificate, or similar document held by the offender.

J. The provisions of this Section shall not prohibit the sale of police accident reports or other driving record information to consumers of on-line driving records under written contracts with the Department of Public Safety and Corrections. The department shall include a clause in all such contracts which precludes the release of information in contravention of this Section.

Acts 1993, No. 924, §1.

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Local Government
Louisiana
3
1
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John Bel Edwards
John Bel Edwards
January 11, 2016 -
Democratic
1-225-342-4404
900 North 3rd Street, Baton Rouge, LA, 70802

Keywords
business
citizen
accident
form
traffic
commercial
involved
businesses
information
legislature