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Car Insurance and Coronavirus: 5 Things You Need to Know

24 Apr

It seems that in some way, the COVID-19 pandemic is impacting every aspect of our daily lives, from our careers and education to our lifestyles and relationships. The use of our vehicles is no exception.

In this article, we hope to answer some of the questions or concerns that you have with regards to how Coronavirus might affect your car insurance.

1. Volunteer Work

Whether you are an NHS volunteer responder or volunteering to deliver food and other supplies within your community during the Coronavirus outbreak, you will be glad to know that your car insurance will not be affected. There is no need to worry about taking time out to contact your insurer either, as you do not need to extend your insurance cover or update your documents.

2. Self-Isolating

We hope that you are well and remain so. However, if you must self-isolate and need someone to drive your car to pick up supplies for you, you will need to add them to your insurance policy as a named driver. Then your vehicle will be covered in the event of damage whilst someone else uses it. To add someone else to your comprehensive insurance, you will need to contact your insurance provider.

On the other hand, if the person who is helping you has a ‘Driving Other Cars’ section on their own car insurance policy and they have your permission, they can drive your car. Please note, this is intended for short-term, emergency use only and they will only get third-party cover.

If you are wondering whether you can pause your car insurance if you must self-isolate, the answer is, unless you apply for a SORN (Statutory Off Road Notification) and register your vehicle off the road, it is a legal requirement to have valid car insurance. If you would like to keep your car but do not intend to drive it for a while, we advise that you contact your insurance provider to find out how they can support you.

3. Commuting to Work

If your circumstances have changed and you now need to drive to work as a result of the impact of Coronavirus, or you would feel more comfortable driving yourself rather than commuting using public transport, your car insurance will still be valid.

Your cover also will not be affected if you work for one of the critical sectors listed by the government and need to drive your own car to different locations for work purposes. In both cases, you do not need to contact your insurance provider to update your documents or extend your cover.

4. Vehicle Repairs and Claims

Whilst insurance providers are doing all in their power to ensure that customers can continue to have their claims paid during this challenging time, it’s worth bearing in mind that it may take longer to get your vehicle replaced or repaired if you have an accident. Because of the disruption to manufacturing and international transport at the moment, getting the necessary parts for repairs is slower than it would be under usual circumstances.

5. MOT Extensions

Last month, the government announced that with effect from 30th March 2020, all cars will receive a 6-month exemption from MOT testing to allow for essential travel. The exemption is valid for 12 months.

Insurers have also reassured drivers that they will not be penalised if you cannot get a MOT and it will not invalidate a claim should you have an accident. Having said that, it is essential that your vehicle is kept in a roadworthy condition, and so you need to make sure that you check your brakes, tyres and lights before you set off.

Can We Help?

Whether you are using your vehicle for volunteering within your community, driving to work to avoid public transport or are not currently using it at all, Thomas Carroll Private Clients are here to support you and are on hand to answer any questions that you may have.

If you need advice, your Account Executive is available to help. You can also contact the team on 02920 853788 or at contact@thomas-carroll.co.uk.

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