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New law lets motorists provide proof of insurance by giving cellphones to police

Posted May 9, 2013 10:24 AM CDT
By Martha Neil

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A new law signed by the Washington state governor Tuesday is intended to make it easier for motorists stopped for traffic offenses to provide proof of insurance by allowing them to pull up the information on their cellphones.

However, those who do so assume the risk of any damage to the electronic device while it is in the police officer's hands, the Seattle Times reports.

There's no word from the newspaper about how handing over one's cellphone to police during a traffic stop might impact the controversial issue of whether and, if so, under what circumstances, police have a right to search an individual's cellphone without a warrant.

See also:

ABA Journal: "Unlikely allies join in a push to require warrants for access to digital communications"

ABAJournal.com: "6th Circuit OKs Warrantless Tracking of Cellphones"

ABAJournal.com: "Cops can’t search cellphone seized at arrest, Florida Supreme Court says; will case go to SCOTUS?"

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