2005 Wisconsin Act 411
(effective date: June 3, 2006)
This act creates s. 346.675, which imposes liability upon
the owner of a vehicle operated in the commission of a failure-to-stop
violation under s. 346.67(1), 346.68 or 346.69. Under this act, if
within 72 hours of receiving a report from a person who observed a
failure-to-stop violation, an officer investigates the violation,
verifies certain information, and determines there is probable cause to
believe that a violation has occurred, he or she may prepare a uniform
traffic citation and serve it upon the owner of the vehicle being
operated in the commission of the violation.
An owner has a defense to
liability if: (1) a report that the vehicle was stolen was given to an
officer before the violation occurred or within a reasonable time after
the violation occurred; or (2) the owner provides an officer with the
name and address of the person operating the vehicle at the time of the
violation and sufficient information to determine that probable cause
does not exist to believe that the owner was operating the vehicle at
the time of the violation.
An owner may also avoid liability if the
vehicle operator has been convicted of the failure-to-stop violation.
(Lessors and dealers of vehicles are provided similar defenses under
this act.) A vehicle owner found liable may be required to forfeit
not more than $100 for striking an unattended vehicle or property and
not more than $1,000 for striking a person or occupied vehicle.