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Motorists cutting corners risk driving illegally warns the ABI

Thousands of motorists are putting their motor insurance cover at risk and driving illegally by knowingly giving false information or failing to disclose important facts, such as motoring convictions, according to survey findings published today (19 January) by the ABI. They face not only a criminal conviction, but a lifetime of more expensive and harder to obtain insurance, and difficulties in accessing other financial products, such as credit.

The number one temptation to get cheaper car insurance is for a parent to insure a vehicle in their name as the main driver, with their son or daughter down as an occasional driver, when in fact they are the main user - commonly known as ‘fronting'. Over a half of motorists surveyed said they would not rule out doing this, despite the fact that it is fraud and could invalidate their insurance and led to a criminal conviction.

ABI-commissioned research among 2,600 adults highlights the lengths some would go to get cheaper motor insurance by trying to deceive insurers:
• Over half (53%) think it is acceptable or borderline behaviour for an older, lower-risk person to insure a vehicle in their name when a younger higher-risk driver is the actual main driver.
• One in five drivers would not rule out exaggerating the number of years since they last claimed.
• 12% might be tempted not to disclose relevant motoring convictions.
• One in ten would not rule out changing details, such as their age, address or occupation, in order to get cheaper car insurance.

Nick Starling, the ABI's Director of General Insurance and Health, said:

"Trying to deceive your insurer is a false economy that will cost you dear. Of course everyone wants to get the best motor insurance deal, but being less than truthful is not the way to do it. Not being honest with your insurer could lead not only to you driving illegally, but to financially crippling bills if involved in an accident, harder to obtain and more expensive future insurance, and difficulties in accessing other financial products".

ABI's tips for getting cheaper motor insurance legally are:
• Shop around as premium rates will vary between insurers. Comparison websites may also be able to help. Insurance brokers can also assist, especially if you have a specialist need.
• If purchasing a car think about the insurance costs, as smaller lower-powered cars will be cheaper to insure. This is especially important for young, newly-qualified drivers.
• Consider taking the Pass Plus post driving test course (passplus@dsa.gsi.gov.uk), especially if you are a young driver.
• Fit an approved immobiliser, as this can often earn you a discount on the premium.
• Consider opting for a higher voluntary excess (the first part of each claim that you pay yourself), as the higher the excess, the lower the premium.

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Last updated 01/07/2016