Are You Unknowingly Invalidating Your Car Insurance?

Are You Unknowingly Invalidating Your Car Insurance?

It doesn’t take much to invalidate your car insurance policy; simply failing to inform your insurer of something that might not seem relevant to the terms of your cover, such as a change of job, could be enough to render your policy void.

And failure to have your vehicle adequately insured is against the law, and the Continuous Insurance Enforcement laws mean that you can still be prosecuted even if you are keeping your car off the road. The only exception is if you have registered a statutory off road notification (SORN) with the DVLA.

That’s why it’s always worth keeping on top of the latest developments in the world of insurance and finding out what the experts have to say on sites such as www.autoline.co.uk.

But, in the meantime, in order to try and help make sure you don’t fall foul of the law, here are some ways in which you could unknowingly be invalidating your car insurance…

Driving to work
If your insurance policy covers you for social, domestic and pleasure (SDP) and you’re involved in an accident while driving to work then your insurer will not be under any obligation to pay out any subsequent claim.

This is because ‘commuting’ has not been specified on the policy, so if you do drive to work make sure that your policy covers SDP and commuting to and from a place of work.

Being a taxi for your mates
It’s unlikely that your insurer will have a problem with you giving people lifts here and there or car sharing to save on the daily commute (provided you’re covered for commuting, of course) – however, if any money changes hands then it could be a different story.

Once you’ve been ‘paid’ for providing a lift then you could be seen as operating a ‘taxi service’ which, unless you’re a cabbie, will be a breach of your policy.

Being ill
If you take regular, prescribed medication then you have to inform your insurer as your terms of cover could change depending upon the type of medicine you’re taking.

Oddly, though, you don’t have to inform your insurer if you’re taking any over-the-counter remedies, even those that may make you drowsy – though, obviously, you shouldn’t be driving your car anyway in that case!

Having nice new wheels
So, you’ve just bought a car but it’s missing that certain something that will complete the look – a nice set of alloys – so, without further ado, you go and fit a set.

However, if you then fail to inform your insurer then you’ll be contravening the terms of your cover by not declaring that your car has been modified.

Modifications aren’t confined to engine tweaks and mad spoilers, and include anything that will add value to your car – but that doesn’t include fluffy dice or headlight eyelashes!

Being cagey about a named driver
Adding an older, named driver to a policy is a technique that will usually shave some money off your premium. However, when filling in details of any named driver, you must ensure that you fill in any claims, accidents or motoring convictions they’ve had, usually in the last five years.

In truth though, to make any sort of saving the named driver will most likely need to have a clean licence and have stayed accident free.

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