BE CAREFUL what you tell your insurance company. Llttle white lies can get you into big trouble.
GoCompare car insurance has highlighted five of the most common ‘white lies’ used by motorists.
- How the car is used: There are three types of car usage: social; social and commuting; business use. Social usage excludes any travel to and from work or other business use so, if you use your car to get to work then you need to make sure your policy covers commuting. Insurers tend to charge a higher premium for commuting and business use because drivers are more likely to be on the road at the busiest times of day.
- ‘Fronting’: To get cheaper cover for a young driver, some parents arrange insurance for their son or daughter, listing them as an additional driver as opposed to the main driver. This is known as ‘fronting’ and insurers consider it fraud. The person who uses the car most often should be listed as the main driver on the policy, additional drivers should only be added if they drive the car occasionally.
- Occupation: Occupation and the way you describe it will impact on the price you pay for car insurance.
- Withholding information about previous claims or damage: In addition to more serious accidents, you should declare details of minor knocks and dents – even if you didn’t claim for the accident.
- Failing to own-up to penalty points or other driving convictions: Deliberately failing to disclose driving offences is fraudulent. Drivers should declare penalty points and other motoring convictions when applying for a policy. Drivers should also notify their insurer immediately of any penalty points received during the term of their cover – rather than waiting until it comes up for renewal.
Last year 449,000 confirmed or suspected dishonest insurance applications were detected by insurers. Of these, most were for car insurance where drivers either lied or withheld information in an attempt to get cheaper cover.
The consequences for drivers caught being economical with the truth are severe. Depending on the circumstances, their insurer may cancel the policy, refuse to pay a claim or prosecute them for fraud.
Lee Griffin, Founder and President at GoCompare said: “Honesty is always the best policy when applying for or renewing your car insurance. To make decisions about your application and the terms they offer you – insurers require information about any drivers who use a car.
“The consequences of withholding or giving false information to obtain cheaper car insurance can be severe. Far from saving money, being untruthful can be costly should you need to make a claim and may even lead to your policy being cancelled or invalidated.”