New Law Approves Proof of Insurance on Mobile Devices - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

New Law Approves Proof of Insurance on Mobile Devices

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KENNEWICK, Wash.-- Registration and proof of insurance is now at your finger tips on your smart phone.

Washington is joining other states across the country to allow people to show their documents on a mobile device to officers if they get pulled over.

Officers and insurance agents say it's convenient and safe, but poses some liability.

Mobile proof of insurance or e-proof, gives drivers a convenient way to keep it handy and provide back-up if you lose your paper copy.

"When our clients lose their cards, we can now just email them a card that they can have on their phone right then and there," said Gary Paulson, Mid-Columbia Insurance.

The instant e-proof could also save you from a pricey ticket.

"With this it'll allow one more way you can avoid getting that ticket and having to go to court and prove that you really did have insurance and having them reduce the ticket," Paulson said.

But if you use your mobile device, the law emphasizes the liability is on you if it gets damaged when handed over to law enforcement.

Police aren't concerned about counterfeit e-proof and say it's just as easy for scammers make fake paper copies.

"Your insurance, you could counterfeit those by scanning the image and modifying it. You can do that. So I don't see it would be any more of a problem than it is now," said Capt. Jim Raymond, Pasco Police Department.

But technical difficulties aren't a good excuse for an officer so convenience might not be consistent.

"Better hope that your device is working when you're asked to have proof of that insurance because without it you end up with a citation which is a rather spendy citation," Raymond said.

Insurance companies are expected to come out with app's for e-proof as the trend grows nationwide.

Twenty states are currently considering e-proof, including Oregon.

Washington's law goes into effect on July 26th.