As 2020 begins, Missouri lawmakers are geared up for a busy year, and residents should be aware of the law changes that could impact their everyday lives.
While new laws will be decided upon throughout the year, there are a few that will start in January that you should know about. The new law changes coming to Missouri in 2020 include changes to motor vehicle inspection requirements, punitive damages caps, and extended summer vacation for school districts.
Motor Vehicle Inspection Changes
Senate Bill 89 was signed into law in July 2019. Taking effect January 2020, this law adds five years to motor vehicle biannual inspection requirements. Prior to this law, motor vehicles were exempt from biannual inspections for a period of five years following their model year. Now, motor vehicles are exempt for a period of ten years following their model year, proving the vehicle has fewer than 150,000 miles on the odometer.
For example, if you purchased a brand new vehicle in 2014, you would be due for an inspection in 2020. Now, however, you’ll have until 2025 or 150,000 miles. This affects approximately 1.1 million vehicles in Missouri. The act also requires the collection of odometer information for vehicles 10 years old or newer with fewer than 150,000. That information should be retained for ten years.
Inspections are important because they ensure a vehicle’s braking, steering, exhaust systems, lights, turn signals, wipers, seat belts, tires, and horn are in proper working condition. Roadworthy vehicles are less likely to breakdown or cause accidents because of faulty parts.
In addition to the motor vehicle inspection changes, Senate Bill 89 includes the following new laws:
- If a driver hits an emergency responder or highway worker, the Director of the Department of Revenue will revoke the driver’s license. This is because a number of workers are injured and killed in roadside accidents every year because of speeding and distracted drivers.
- All homemade trailers are required to be inspected. The inspection fee is now $25.
- Entities engaged in the business of renting or leasing vehicles are now required to pay the Director of the Department of Revenue an annual $250 fee.
Extended Summer Vacation
Parents and guardians should be aware that Missouri Governor Mike Parson approved a bill in July 2019 that gives some students a lengthened summer vacation in 2020. The bill moves the earliest possible start day for public school by four days. Schools are allowed to start no sooner than ten days before the first Monday in September. The goal is to help the state’s tourism industry and give families another week of summer vacation.
Deciphering new laws can be confusing and may seem overwhelming if you know they could have an impact on your future or your personal injury claim. That’s where we come in. Thomas Law Offices stays up-to-date on all the state’s law changes, so we can help our clients understand their impacts.
If you have concerns or questions about the laws discussed above or other laws in Missouri, we can help you find answers. If you’ve been injured and think you may need to file a personal injury claim, we can also evaluate your situation and help you determine how best to proceed.
We want all Missouri residents to enter into 2020 with confidence and ease. Injuries can hinder that. To learn more about the law changes, personal injury claims, or your legal rights and options after being wrongfully harmed, schedule a consultation with our attorneys today.