Car insurance: Warning over drivers invalidating their cover with simple mistakes

3 mins read

As a result of the numerous lockdowns in 2020 and 2021, fewer drivers were on the roads, leaving car insurance rates to be lower. With driving habits now returning to pre-pandemic levels, and with more drivers on the roads, drivers are being warned to watch out for small mistakes which could affect their insurance.

Some policies also specifically exclude cover for car sharing, whether drivers make profit from it or not.

For those whose policies do allow lift sharing, it may be void if they make profit from giving lifts.

Many will state that motorists can only make enough to cover petrol and driving costs.

Earning money from giving lifts can identify the driver as a “taxi hire service”, thus making a policy which does not cover this void.

CarParts4Less commented on the potential for invalidated insurance by certain journeys.

They said: “There are three types of car usage that insurance covers; social only, social and commuting, and business.

“Social only insurance covers driving for social or leisure use; driving to and from friends’ houses, going to the supermarket, etc.

“The commute to and from work, or even to and from the train station, are not covered by this policy, so upgrading to a social and commuting is necessary, even if you only commute a few times a month.

“Insurance companies may dispute or refuse claims made during a commute if the policy is for social use only, even if it is claimed to be only a one-off.”

If you use your car for work purposes outside of commuting, for example using it to get to meetings, or carrying equipment, you will need to get business cover.

Drivers are also advised to avoid “fronting”.

Insurance for young drivers often costs more than groups deemed less of a risk, with some motorists looking to get around the higher premiums.

They do this by having a low-risk driver, such as a parent or parent, named as the main policy holder, and adding the real motorist as a named driver.

If drivers are caught fronting, their policy could immediately be cancelled, with any claims denied.

These cases are often taken to court, too, as it classes as insurance fraud. 

Potential outcomes include fines of up to £5,000 and six points on the offender’s licence.

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