Is my car insured? How to check your car insurance
Ever wake up in a cold sweat wondering whether your car has valid insurance? Wonder no longer!
It’s your legal responsibility to make sure your car has valid insurance at all times. Driving without insurance is an offence that can land you in hot water - known in the biz as an IN10.
But with car insurance auto-renewal in place, it can be confusing to know who you’re insured with. Or even if you’re insured at all.
So for peace of mind, here's how you find out if your car has insurance.
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How can I check if my car is insured?
The quickest way to check if your car has insurance is to use the Motor Insurer’s Database (MID). This service has information of all cars insured in the UK.
It's free to use and tells you whether the car is insured as well as the make and model.
How do I check who I'm insured with?
You can check your bank or credit card statements for payments to an insurance company. Then you can try to contact them for more information.
You can also look through all your emails as you may have had confirmation from the insurer. Don't forget to look through your junk and spam folders!
If that doesn't work, you can ask for a Subject Access Request from the Motor Insurers' Bureau (MIB).
These are usually free, but the MIB can charge a 'reasonable fee' for some admin costs.
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What if my car doesn't have insurance?
If you're caught driving uninsured on any public road, you could get a fine of £300 and have six penalty points. And if your case goes to court, you could get a driving ban and an unlimited fine.
This offence is an IN10, and it can hamper your chances of getting cheaper car insurance in the future.
Even if your car is in your garage gathering dust, you still have to pay for insurance. This is because of the Continuous Insurance Enforcement legislation.
The only way around this is to declare your car off the road with the DVLA. You do this with a Statutory Off-Road Notification (SORN).
If you’re uninsured and haven’t made a SORN, you could still get a penalty - even if you aren't using your car
READ MORE: Tips for cheaper car insurance
Saving money on a new car insurance policy
We keep an eye car insurance prices so you can see when prices go up and down. If it turns out you need to buy a new policy, you can do a few things to save money.
Here’s what the price depends on and what you can do about it:
What car you drive – smaller cars tend to have cheaper insurance.
What security you have – better security can lower your premium.
How you use your car - using your car for commuting or business can jack up the price.
The type of cover you choose – third-party cover isn't always cheaper than comprehensive. It's worth looking at both.
To drive the cost down you can also increase your voluntary excess, as this tends to keep premiums down.
READ MORE: Car insurance traps to avoid