With car insurance a legal necessity in the UK, if you want to drive, experts over at Leasing Options are warning about the common habits that could invalidate your insurance.
Not having valid insurance could see you receive an on-the-spot fine of £300 and 6 points on your licence.
If the case were to go to court, you could receive an unlimited fine and be barred from driving.
Mike Thompson, COO at Leasing Options warns: "Many drivers’ circumstances may have changed since they last renewed their car insurance, such as a change of address or jobs. We must remember to update our policies to ensure everything is still accurate.
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“Failing to do this could invalidate your policy and leave you in a difficult situation if a reason arises that you need to put in a claim to your insurance provider.
“We recommend motorists check their car insurance policy regularly to make sure it is up to date with their current circumstances before getting behind the wheel again. Or they could be breaking the law by driving a vehicle on a road or in a public place without insurance.”
Here are the 10 ways you could be invalidating your car insurance:
1. Exchanging money for lifts
Making money from giving your peers a lift could invalidate your insurance with some policies not accepting any sort of payment for this.
This is because they may see this as your car being used for hire and profits.
However, accepting money for petrol is generally ok as you are unlikely to make a profit from this.
2. Inaccurately naming the main driver
Naming someone else as the main driver in your insurance account is called 'fronting' and is illegal.
This is often done to reduce a young driver's insurance premiums and usually involves someone older being named.
3. Not updating your address
When moving house or changing address it can be very easy to forget to update the address associated with your insurance.
However, this can invalidate your insurance as policies take into account high-risk postcodes.
4. Not informing your insurer about a new career
Insurance companies collect occupation data to find out which occupations are most likely to make a claim.
Not informing them of a career change could therefore invalidate your insurance.
5. Where you park your car
There's a difference in insurance premiums if you use off-street parking compared to parking on a street.
If you tell your insurer that your car is parked off-street when it’s not, your claim, if it were broken into, would not be valid.
6. Lying about what the car is used for
Insurers will ask if you use your car for social, social and commuting, commuting and/or business.
7. Underestimating the mileage
Mileage is used to calculate your premiums so if your mileage is higher than you have stated, your policy could be at risk.
8. Having an obstructed windscreen
If your screen is obstructed, whether that be by frost, dirt or too many air fresheners, your insurance could be void if it hinders your view in an accident.
9. Not telling your insurer about accidents
You must let your insurer know about any accidents your car is involved in, no matter how big or small.
10. Modifying your car
If you plan to modify your car, tell your insurer beforehand so they can tell you how much your policy would increase.
Changing your car in any way could mean a number of changes to your insurance premiums.