Car insurance firms may refuse to pay for vandal damage leaving owners liable for repairs

Car insurance firms may refuse to pay for vandal damage leaving owners liable for repairs

Car insurance agreements are usually separated into two classes, comprehensive cover and third party fire and theft. Motorists who wish to receive cover for most incidents will purchase comprehensive cover but this is usually expensive and out of the budgets of some younger motorists.

However, those on third party insurance may not be covered for vehicle damage caused by others which could see owners forced to pay for repairs themselves. 

Depending on the damage caused, this could hit motorists with thousands of pounds worth of damage in an uneasy financial period. 

The AA says although road users cannot be blamed for their car being vandalised this is usually covered as an at-fault claim. 

This is because it is unlikely motorists can identify the vandal, so an insurance provider cannot recover costs from them.

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Speaking to Mark Greening, motoring expert at GoCompare said: “Fully comprehensive cover is necessary if your car is ever vandalised.

“Unlike in an accident where the driver isn’t at fault, vandalism and theft leave no other party for the insurer to claim from. 

“Without comprehensive cover, even though the vandalism isn’t your fault, you’ll be liable for the damage caused. Likewise, with third party cover, which only covers claims made by others against you.”

Shockingly, experts at the AA have also warned road users could be at risk of losing their no claims bonus which could see monthly premiums rise. 

Some car insurance companies do offer protection against a no claims bonus for vandalism but this is not standard. 

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In a stunning revelation, the AA says motorists may save in the long run if they pay for any vehicle damage themselves instead of going through an insurance company. 

However, failing to declare any vehicle damage to an insurer is also against the rules of many policies and can lead to cover being invalidated. 

This is because your overall perceived road risk would increase if your car was previously damaged. 

Mr Greening told “Another thing to consider is your no claims bonus. Claiming for vandalism could likely affect this.

“Just claiming could put your premiums up but remember you could also lose your bonus altogether, making your premiums more expensive next year. 

“A fully comprehensive policy could make it more likely for your insurer to cover you, so it’s important you understand the level of cover you need before taking out a policy.”

The Metropolitan Police has warned motorists that vehicles parked in dark and quiet areas are more liable to be damaged. 

They advise road users to park somewhere that is well lit and near passing traffic as this could deter criminals and vandals. 

Police officers urge motorists to always remove expensive gadgets from the inside of a car and if possible, consider using security film around their windows. 

An extra tip is to leave some space between your vehicle and other cars which could mean the vandals are more likely to be seen.

Published at Thu, 04 Jun 2020 13:00:00 +0000