Police estimates suggest there are 1 million uninsured drivers on Britain’s roads today, creating dangerous and costly situations for law-abiding motorists.
According to its figures, 200 people each year are killed by uninsured drivers, and the resulting cost of medical bills and compensation claims is thought to be adding as much as £30 to every car insurance policy.
As well as extra cost across the board, being involved in a collision with an uninsured driver can create an insurance nightmare.
How do you claim? Who do you claim from? Will it cost you money? Will your no-claims bonus be affected?
These are all questions you’re likely to ask if the worst happens so we’ve put together the answers. Read on to find out what to do if you find yourself in a stand-off with an uninsured motorist.
Fully comprehensive cover
If you have fully comprehensive car insurance you can claim from your insurer. Although, be aware that your no claims bonus is likely to be affected unless you have protected it.. Legal cover is also worth considering – it will cover the cost of a solicitor if you decide to pursue the claim through the courts.
Third party fire and theft
If you only have third party cover the situation is far more difficult.
You won’t be able to claim from your insurer but you will be able to submit a claim to the Motor Insurers' Bureau (MIB).
Motor Insurance Bureau
The MIB is an organisation that exists to compensate the victims of negligent uninsured and untraced motorists. If you choose to seek compensation via the MIB, then you will need an accident report.
You also have to be certain that the other driver is uninsured so it is essential to take a note of the make, model and registration number of the other car or cars involved in an accident.
But bear in mind that any claim through the MIB will be reduced by £300 – a bit like an excess payment. So if someone claims for damage to the value of £500, then they will receive £200 in compensation.
What do I do at the time of the accident?
Remember to make a note of the following:
- The other driver’s vehicle make and model, and registration number. This is really the most important piece of information to collect, as if the driver is uninsured, then any name or address that they give you could be false.
- The driver’s name and address. Your insurance company will require this for all accidents.
- Take notes regarding the damage to the other vehicle involved.
- Take note of as much detail about the accident scene itself as you can – including road markings, weather and light conditions, whether the cars had their lights on, signals being made by cars at the time etc.
- If there are any independent witnesses, be sure to get their contact details in order to collect statements.
- If you have a camera, take lots of shots of the scene – and try to get the other driver in there. Remember, your mobile phone can be handy for this too.
Should I call the police?
You should call the police as a matter of course if any of the vehicles are causing an obstruction, there is bodily injury, damage to animals or you have hit third-party property such as a wall. They will file an accident report, which your insurance company will need to process a claim, and in the event that a driver is uninsured, you’ll need an accident report to claim through the MIB.
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