Car Sharing industry
Photo credit: Phuengsuwan

“Peer-to-peer car sharing” refers to sharing privately-owned vehicles for money over an internet platform such as Turo, Getaround, or Zipcar. Similar to Airbnbs where individuals can rent out their homes, car sharing allows participating vehicle owners to rent out their vehicles when they are not using them. The car sharing industry has bloomed in the United States, prompting states to enact legislation regulating the nascent industry.

Alabama: Legislation Establishing the Peer-to-Peer Car Sharing Program Act

In May 2023, HB459 was introduced and referred to the House Economic Development & Tourism Committee. The bill would establish the Peer-to-Peer Car Sharing Program Act, allowing for the operation of peer-to-peer car-sharing programs throughout the state and excluding the lesser of peer-to-peer car-sharing vehicles from liability for certain taxes on the profit made from vehicle rental and leasing. The bill would define peer-to-peer car-sharing programs as businesses that connect vehicle owners with drivers to allow for the sharing of vehicles in the interest of financial gain. The bill did not advance in the 2023 legislative session.

Hawaii: Legislation Clarifying “Car-Sharing Termination Time” For Purpose of Motor Vehicle Insurance

In January 2023, HB639 was introduced and passed its first reading in the House. This bill concerns insurance regarding car-sharing programs; it would clarify when peer-to-peer car-sharing programs are terminated for motor vehicle insurance. “Car sharing termination time” would occur when the shared vehicle is returned to an agreed-upon location outlined in the car-sharing program agreement. This bill would also apply peer-to-peer car-sharing insurance laws to other entities that make rental vehicles available under state law. The bill did not advance in the 2023 legislative session.

Massachusetts: Legislation That Establishes Regulations for Car Sharing Programs

In February 2023, S2252 was introduced to the Senate and referred to the Joint Committee on Transportation. The purpose of this bill is to establish regulations for peer-to-peer car-sharing programs. An example of such regulations would be that programs provide customers with precise transportation cost estimates, including additional charges. The bill would also require local law enforcement and the Department of Public Utilities to inspect vehicles used for car-sharing programs to ensure consumer safety.

Rhode Island: Governor Signs Bill Clarifying That Peer-to-Peer Car Sharing is Not Considered Rental Vehicles

In January 2023, S0001 was introduced to the Senate and referred to the Judiciary Committee. The bill would clarify that peer-to-peer car sharing, peer-to-peer car sharing programs, and peer-to-peer car sharing agreements are not considered rental vehicles, provided that the vehicle owner does not share more than five vehicles through one or more peer-to-peer car sharing programs in a year. On June 22, 2023, S0001 was passed and signed by Rhode Island Governor Dan McKee.

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