Insuring your car is a legal requirement, no matter how frustrating your latest renewal quote may have been. That doesn’t stop some people from trying to get away without the annual premium leaving their bank accounts and trying to pull a fast one on the authorities. Unfortunately for you, if you’re involved in an accident with an uninsured driver then it could mean you end up losing out big time.
What Happens if I Drive Without Insurance?
Driving without insurance is a serious crime, and you could be saying goodbye to your driving career fairly quickly if you try to get away without paying your latest premium. The chances of you getting caught is highly likely thanks to Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) systems, used by the police, which are directly linked to the Motor Insurance Database (MID). ANPR systems catch approximately 125,000 uninsured drivers each year.
If you are caught driving uninsured, your car will be confiscated immediately, and if you cannot prove that the car has insurance, it will either be sold on or sent to the scrapyard – with about a third of all uninsured cars ending up crushed. Not only that, but you will receive a £300 fixed penalty notice, 6 points on your licence and you could even find yourself banned from driving altogether. While these may seem extreme punishments on the face of it, when you factor in that uninsured drivers are estimated to kill approximately 120 people a year and cause injuries to a further 29,000, those punishments become wholly understandable.
What Happens if I Hit an Uninsured Car?
If you are involved in a collision where you are at fault then having third-party insurance would only cover the cost towards the other car’s damage, although if you were involved in an accident with an uninsured car, your insurers are unlikely to pay out on the uninsured car. You will only be covered for damages to your own car if you have comprehensive insurance.
What Happens if an Uninsured Car Hit me?
If you are hit by an uninsured car, the issue comes in that there is no-one for your insurance company to claim against for any damages or injuries as a result of the incident. If you are fully comprehensive then, while tricky, you should still be able to make a claim. If you only have third party or third party, fire and theft insurance, your insurers will put you in touch with the Motor Insurer’s Bureau, who will help you attempt to claim compensation, although there is no guarantee that you will get any money from them.
How do I Check if I Have Insurance?
Checking your insurance couldn’t be easier, thanks to the askMID website. The website has all of the information at its fingertips direct from the MID database, which is also systematically cross-referenced to the DVLA database, meaning it can inform you of any vehicle’s insurance status at the click of a few buttons. To do this for your own car bears no charge.
Can I Check Another Car’s Insurance Status?
If you’ve had an accident and suspect the other car has no insurance, you can once again use the askMID website, but will have to pay a £10 one-off fee to be able to check on the other car. The website will ask for a few details surrounding the accident, and once it has its information to hand it will identify the insurer of the other vehicle, meaning you can begin your claim.
Can I Report an Uninsured Driver?
If you suspect that a car is being driven without insurance, then you should make sure it is reported to the police as soon as possible. Not only will the roads be safer if there are fewer uninsured drivers on the road, but insurance premiums as a whole could see a reduction in the long term.
What to do if my Insurance is Going to Run Out?
If you know that your insurance is going to run out before you have a chance to renew, then you must ensure that it is taken off the road – this can be as simple as a driveway, garage or a patch of private land – and a Statutory Off Road Notice (SORN) is applied for. SORNing a car allows you to keep it off the road without insurance or tax, but you cannot drive it again until tax and insurance are taken care of. Failure to SORN a car that’s kept off the road can result in an £100 fine, although this could rise to £1,000 with a court prosecution and the car could be impounded.
Why are There so Many Uninsured Cars on the Road with Such Hefty Fines?
Driving without insurance isn’t always an elaborate plot to avoid paying insurance premiums and to get around the law, accidentally driving without insurance is a common mistake that even the most law-abiding drivers can easily fall foul of.
The most common instances for accidentally driving without insurance are when buying a new car – although most dealers now offer “driveaway insurance”, which insures the car for the first few days after purchase – and when driving a friend’s car. Driving others’ cars (DOC) used to be a standard feature in comprehensive insurance policies, but is less common now, so it is best to check your own insurance certificate just to be certain. There are also a wide range of companies now offering single day insurance policies, so you can be absolutely sure that you are covered while in someone else’s car.
Have you recently been in an accident with an uninsured driver that has left your car on its last legs? Now could well be the time to let it go and look towards your next set of wheels – and that’s where we at Scrap Car Comparison can help. Get in touch with our team of expert advisors and we’ll be able to give you the very best price going for your car, guaranteed. Get started today and begin your scrap car journey now.