What can invalidate my car insurance policy?

When you take out car insurance, your insurer will highlight your policy’s key facts and exclusions and you should check your policy document when you receive it.

To help you stay covered we’ve also put together a list of the most common ways drivers invalidate their car insurance.

Modifications

Thinking about adding some tinted windows, a body kit or even a new suspension to your car? Let your insurer know.

Any changes to the car – whether they’re cosmetic or to improve performance – can affect the cost of your insurance.

Contact your insurer before making any changes to check how this will affect your premiums. If you go ahead without checking with your insurance company, your cover could be void.

Driving penalties

Make sure you tell your insurer about any convictions for driving offences or points on your licence you may have had in the past.

It helps them make a judgement about how safe a driver you are and how much your premiums should cost.

Declare any points which have disappeared from your licence. After 3 years they might not apply to your licence, but your insurer may want to know details of any points in the last 5 years.

Inaccurate information

Having the right information on your insurance policy will help to make sure it stays valid. Some common errors include:

  • insuring your vehicle in someone else’s name with yourself as a named driver
  • saying the car is for ‘personal use only’ and then using it for business

Make sure you’re honest about the main driver and what the car’s purpose is. Otherwise your insurer could invalidate your cover and you won’t be able to make a claim if you have an accident.

Protecting your car

Most car insurance policies will cover you against theft. But if you don’t pay attention to security, it could invalidate your policy.

Leaving the keys in the ignition while you pay for petrol at a garage for example, is just one way you could invalidate your cover. Similarly, if you leave it unlocked in a car park, it’s more likely to be stolen and your insurer could refuse to pay out.

All the precautions you’ll need to take are detailed in your policy documents so read them carefully to make sure you know what you need to do.

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