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Is protecting your no claims bonus worth the cost?

View profile for Barry Sutton
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Is protecting your no claims bonus worth the cost?

I was interested to see that Swinton Insurance had put out a social media post referring to how insurance premiums can still be affected should you make a claim as a result of a collision.

Swinton seem to suggest that if an individual is involved in a collision it may mean (from the perspective of an insurer) that they become a higher risk to insure thereafter.

From a legal perspective a claimant can generally have peace of mind that they are not legally obliged to use their own insurance cover following a non- fault collision.

The well-trodden path in case law does not allow the defendant (opposition driver) to demand that you should use your own insurance policy and in many cases which I am instructed in my clients do not wish to use their own policy of insurance exactly because of the risk that their premium could increase whilst waiting for their claim to be resolved (especially if their insurance renews during this period).

Quite often an insurer or defendant solicitor on behalf of a defendant driver will complain about a claimant failing to use their own policy of insurance and refer to this in a formal defence. This argument is routinely rejected and is not pursued by the defendant at trial.

A claimant should be measured about whether they wish to make a claim on their own policy following a non-fault collision as quite often (in my experience) insurers are usually unable to specifically account for the sums which a premium may increase by directly as a result of a claim being made on the policy as I am told that other market factors (inflation, competition between suppliers, other underwriting principles, supply and demand etc.) may impact on the cost of renewal also. As such even after the claim is resolved in favour of the claimant (following a claim on their own policy) there is no guarantee that their insurance premium will return to the level of that of before the collision.

That said, should a claimant be involved in a fault collision then they may have no choice but to use their own policy of insurance, but at the very least this is hopefully with the knowledge that a protected no claims bonus may not avoid an insurance premium price rise at renewal.

I suppose the question which follows is whether the cost associated with protected no claims bonus is worth it…?

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