Car insurance is a legal obligation for every driver.
Driving without it can earn you a fixed fine of £300 and six points on your licence, and if the matter goes to court the situation could escalate, with an unlimited fine and possibly a driving ban. And, in some cases, the vehicle can be destroyed.
It is therefore extremely important that drivers are insured before they get behind the wheel, and it is essential that you do not invalidate or restrict your cover – unintentionally or otherwise – and allow yourself to be driven without it.
READ MORE:How where you park at night can affect your insurance premium
Here are some ways drivers could accidentally invalidate their insurance. You can get more Swansea news and other story updates by subscribing to our newsletters here.
A job change
When changing jobs, it is important to remember to inform your insurer when you start your new position. Title and type of occupation are factors that insurers take into account when setting premiums, as well as whether you use the vehicle to get around. Failure to notify your insurer of these changes could invalidate your coverage and leave you uninsured. You could even face a fine for using a mobile phone as a passenger – find out more here.
Insurers consider postcodes when setting a car insurance premium, as some areas are deemed riskier than others. A move could make your policy cheaper or more expensive, but you should let your provider know.
Leave the windshield obstructed
If a windshield is covered in frost, mud, and dirt, or even if there are too many air fresheners hanging from your rearview mirror, if it’s clogged in any way, you could invalidate your cover. If you are involved in an accident and your car is deemed to be in an “unsafe condition”, not only could your policy be invalidated, but you could also face a £60 fine. Check out the little-known “yellow box junction rule” here.
If you’ve told your insurer that you leave your car in a garage, driveway or private parking lot, but then leave it on the road, this could invalidate your coverage. Insurers take into account where you leave your car overnight, as this will impact the risk of theft or damage. So if you change where you keep your car, let your insurer know.
Invoicing of journeys
If you start charging people for rides, not only will you be left without cover, but you could also be fined up to £2,500 and have your vehicle impounded.
Driving too many friends
Overloading your vehicle – whether with people or goods – will likely invalidate your auto insurance policy. All passengers must be restrained in the car by their own seat belt – to do otherwise is against the law.
Valet parking services are popular at airports, hotels and entertainment venues across the UK, but this could leave you without insurance cover, as many policies won’t cover you if your car is damaged while driving. she’s in the care of a valet.
If you enter your own car in a racing event or off-road rally, you will likely invalidate your coverage. These are the rules of the highway code on priority at roundabouts.
Parking near where planes land or take off
Some insurance policies do not cover loss or damage from pressure waves caused by aircraft traveling at or above the speed of sound, so think carefully before parking near an airport runway .
When a parent presents himself as the main driver of his child’s car, this is called a “frontage”, aNot only could this see you and your child’s policies invalidated, but you could also be convicted of fraud. Young drivers can lower their insurance premiums by purchasing black box insurance the price of which depends on your own driving style and not only on your age.
Pimping your vehicle with modifications that change the look and performance of the car could well mean an increase in the cost of coverage.
Driving during a natural disaster
Many insurance policies do not cover natural disasters (or “acts of God”). The UK has no active volcanoes to avoid, and earthquakes and tornadoes are rare. But if you’re traveling across Europe, you could encounter natural disaster zones – if you were to drive up the side of Mount Etna during an eruption, for example, your policy is unlikely to cover you.