Frequently Asked Questions
Not all insurance is equal…………….
At one answer, we believe in personal service first & foremost. In order for you to get an accurate and competitive insurance, there are a few questions we would recommend that you ask everyone from whom you get a quotation.
If your query is not answered here, or we can help further, please call 01323 481444
What is my total excess?
The excess shown or given may not reflect the total policy excess. Ask about compulsory excess (non-negotiable, applied to the policy in all circumstances), voluntary excess (you might be able to load the excess to reduce the premium or the insurer may have loaded this on your behalf to give a cheaper quote) and check any young/inexperienced driver excess if you are under 25, or if you have passed your test within the past 5 years.
Who is my actual insurer?
Not all the companies you contact are direct insurers. You may find yourself speaking to an independent intermediary or broker. These companies scour the insurance market on your behalf and administer the policy, acting as a guide between you and the insurer. It may be that different brokers have different rates available through the same insurers and insurers won’t undercut themselves
Does my policy include legal cover/uninsured loss recovery?
This optional extra covers you for any losses not covered by your insurance policy. Specialist legal help is provided in the event of non-fault motor accidents. You will receive assistance with a replacement vehicle, vehicle repair and assistance in recovering your uninsured losses such as loss of earning and travel expenses, as well as the appointment of a solicitor should this be necessary. Please check your policy documentation for full details.
Does my policy include vehicle breakdown cover?
This is an optional extra known as motor breakdown insurance – this provides roadside assistance and vehicle recovery services in the UK and Europe. Please check your insurance documents to see whether this was purchased as part of your policy, the level of cover and also the telephone number to ring in the event of a claim. If you are unsure please contact customer services on 01323 481 444
Does my policy include a green card?
A green card is needed if you wish to take your car into mainland Europe. This can be included for either 30 or 90 days on most policies, some companies still charge for this. Whilst you have basic cover abroad with your UK insurance, that comprehensive cover will not be extended without this option.
Is my No Claims Bonus protected, or guaranteed?
If you want to protect your No Claims Bonus, it will cost you extra and may increase your excess. Most insurers like you to have a minimum number of years No Claims Bonus before allowing you the option to pay to protect it.
Please note: whilst protection means that your discount remains the same, No Claims Bonus protection does not protect the overall price of your insurance policy. The price of your insurance policy may increase following an accident even if you were not at fault.
Do I get a new-for-old vehicle?
If your vehicle is less than 12 months old, in the event of a write-off, some insurers may give you an identical new vehicle, rather than paying out the value of your original.
Is my insurer/claims department based in the UK?
As a cost-saving measure, many insurers have transferred their underwriting departments and claims departments to call centres outside the UK. This may result in a delayed service and unfamiliarity with your day-to-day policy needs. If you want your policy to be administered in the UK, check this.
What is the duration of my policy?
That cheap premium may not reflect a full 12-month policy. Check for either short-term or bonus accelerator policies being offered. Note that if a company is offering a full year’s bonus after 10 months of cover that bonus may only be acceptable to that insurer and you may find yourself with fewer discounts than you thought.
Does this premium include direct debit charges?
If you want to spread the cost of your cover over the year, chances are you will be charged interest. Check if the premium you’re given is the total that you are likely to pay.
What are the terms, should I wish to cancel my policy?
Should you find your policy surplus to requirements, you are within your rights to cancel at anytime. However, all insurers will have cancellation charges and you should not expect to receive back a pro rata refund. If the policy has run past it’s halfway point, you may get no refund at all. Cancellation charges should be available on your company’s terms and conditions.
What is the difference between No Claims Bonus/No Claims Discount, Mirrored Discount and Introductory Discount?
Insurance companies offer many different discounts in order to get your business. Not all of these are transferable to a new company, should you wish to move at renewal.
No Claims Bonus/Discount: This is the most usual form of discount, you earn 1 year of bonus for every 12 months you are insured without making a claim. This bonus is transferable to new companies should you choose to move, up to a maximum of 5 to 9 years, dependent on the insurer.
Mirrored Discount: You may own two cars. Or a car and a van. Having spent all that time building up a clean driving record and full no claims bonus on your main vehicle, you may be rightly averse to paying a full premium on your secondary vehicle. Always mention when getting quotes that you have full bonus on another vehicle. Please note, this is not available if you are trying to insure a vehicle on behalf of someone else.
Introductory Discount: You may have been insured on someone else’s policy for the past few years and just returning to your own insurance, or had a company car/van but can not get actual bonus proof. If you don’t have any no claims bonus, mention any driving history you can prove, you may get an introductory discount as companies vie for your business.
How do I make a claim?
To make a claim one answer insurance policyholders should call –
one answer CLAIMS
0845 839 9932 Quote : 1AN000
Can I get instant cover?
Yes. If you pay by either credit or debit card over the telephone, we can provide you with instant cover.
Do I have to pay in full or can I pay in instalments?
We are able to offer a variety of flexible instalment plans.
Call Customer Services on 01323 481444 to discuss which plan suits you.
Do you have short term policies?
We offer various policies.
Do you insure young drivers?
We can insure all young drivers from 16 years old on a Moped and 17 years on a private car. Call one of our Insurance Advisors on 01323 481444
Do you insure convicted drivers?
Yes. We can offer very competitive rates to all drivers, especially those with motoring convictions.
Call one of our Insurance Advisors on 01323 481444
Do you insure imported vehicles?
Yes. We have various insurance companies who cover imported vehicles.
Call one of our Insurance Advisors on 01323 481444 to discuss your requirements in more detail.
Do you insure people with medical conditions?
Yes. Providing you have been given medical clearance from your GP that you are physically fit to drive, the DVLA are advised and you have no restrictions
What is the Maximum age that you insure?
Providing you have been given medical clearance from your GP that you are physically fit to drive, we have no age limit.
Can I make any amendment to my policy, e.g. change of address, vehicle, usage or occupation?
Any change to your policy may increase or decrease your insurance premium. To notify us of any change to your circumstances, please email us at email@example.com or call Customer Services on 01323 481444.
Which date do my monthly instalments come out on?
Your monthly payment will be taken within 28 days of you setting up your policy. You can change your payment date after the 1st direct debit has been taken and within 60 days or you will be charged a fee. If you need further information about your payment date, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call Customer Services on 01323 481444
Which date is my policy due for renewal?
Your renewal date is the same date as the start date of your policy (for annual policies). For example, if you took your policy out on 15.05.2011, it will be due for renewal on 15.05.2012. You should always call our Renewals team on 01323 481444 a few days before your renewal date to continue with your policy or to check its expiry time.
What are material fact(s)?
These are the answers that you provide to the insurer’s questions and are what the insurer would regard as likely to influence the acceptance and assessment of this application. If you are in any doubt about whether facts are to be considered material, you should disclose them. We can give you further advice on 01323 481444 if you require it.
What are classed as disabilities or medical conditions?
Certain disabilities or medical conditions will need to be notified to the DVLA (Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency), as they may effect your or any named drivers’ ability to drive.
What is your Full and /or part-time occupation?
Enter the area which best describes your occupation. Your occupation is a rating factor as it will let the insurer know what you will use the vehicle for.
Who is the main Driver of the vehicle?
This is the person who uses the vehicle the most. As with all material facts, you should be honest here. If you are planning to insure a vehicle for your son or daughter, when you know that they will be the main user, you should state this, failing to do so could lead to your insurer invalidating any claims.
Why do you need my telephone number?
We like to take both your telephone number and your e-mail address as a point of immediate contact with you. If you are worried about the storage of your personal information, please read our privacy security statement. However, you will find that we cannot offer an on-line quotation without at least 1 telephone number and a valid e-mail address.
What is the number of other vehicles in the household?
It is important to enter the correct number of vehicles in your household as we may cross-validate your data and offer discounts on the basis of vehicle ownership.
What are imported vehicles?
Vehicles are brought in from abroad (usually EU countries) and match the UK specifications and some of our companies will insure these. Non UK specification: these are vehicles which are brought into the UK from abroad and do not match current UK specifications. These vehicles are more difficult to insure, mainly due to the restricted availability of parts. As our on-line quotation system is limited for quotations on imports, you may wish to call our import specialists on 01323 481444 for a quotation tailored to your requirements.
What are modifications?
This is when the vehicle’s engine, suspension or body has been altered in any way that is different from the original manufacturer’s specification. Vehicles fitted with special equipment or apparatus will also fall into this category. The most common modifications are performance enhancements, such as exhausts and bodywork, such as personalised paintwork. Please note that the above lists are not exhaustive. Although our system is currently unable to offer a quotation for modifications on-line, you may contact us on 01323 481444, where one of our sales advisors will tailor a policy to suit your vehicle’s requirements.
Do you have access to any other vehicles?
This is when you or any proposed drivers have any use of another vehicle:
- You may own another motorcycle, van or car
- You may be a named driver on another policy
- You may have access to a company van/car within working hours e.g. a pool car
- You may have full, personal access to a company van/car including social domestic and pleasure use
- You may have access to a car
- You may have access to a van
- You may have access to a motorcycle
Our experienced advisors may offer unique discounts for such driving experience, you may call them on01323 481444.
What is an immobiliser?
There are two types of Thatcham graded immobiliser:
- T2 = An immobiliser that has been judged to comply to the Thatcham criteria
- T1 = An alarm/immobiliser combination that has been judged to comply to the Thatcham criteria
Definition: An Electronic immobiliser is a device fitted to the vehicle that disables the engine of your vehicle when your vehicle is not in operation by you. Some newer vehicles have these factory fitted by the manufacturer and these are normally shown within your vehicle brochure. It is also possible to have these immobilisers fitted by a garage or specialist, who would supply a certificate of installation detailing the exact model of your vehicle’s immobiliser. A copy of your fitment certificate may be required.
Definition: A manual immobiliser is a device fitted which is usually placed on the steering wheel or gear lever of your vehicle e.g. Krooklok.
What is a tracking device?
This is a device which enables the police to locate your vehicle if it is stolen. Some newer vehicles may have this device installed by the manufacturer. However, this is normally a facility which you are required to subscribe to on an annual basis. A copy of your fitment certificate may be required.
What are the differences in insurance cover types?
- Third Party Only cover: This is the most basic insurance and covers your liability for death or bodily injury to a third party (including other occupants of your vehicle) and your liability for damage to third party property
- Third Party Fire and Theft cover: This covers third party risks as described above plus the risk of fire and theft in connection with your vehicle in accordance with relevant policy terms. Some insurers will provide cover for the contents and the audio equipment of the vehicle, details will be provided with your on-line quotation
- Comprehensive cover: This includes the Third Party Fire and Theft cover, as well as loss of or damage to your vehicle caused by accidental or malicious damage. Comprehensive cover usually includes some personal accident benefit in respect of personal injury to you or your death (please refer to your policy terms for details). Theft cover for the contents of your vehicle is provided by most insurers but only to a specified amount and subject to policy terms. Details will be shown with your quotation
What do you use the vehicle for?
- Social Domestic and Pleasure: covers you for your normal everyday driving, such as driving to the shops or visiting friends
- Social Domestic and Pleasure plus commuting (The most common use) covers you for all previously stated and commuting to one permanent place of work or study
There are also three levels of business use which can cater for any clients needing to use their vehicle in connection with their occupation/business, they are:
- Class 1 The vehicle is used in connection with your business or you may travel to various places of work.
- Class 2 A named driver uses the vehicle in connection with there business or you may travel to various places of work.
- Class 3 the vehicle is used for commercial traveling, carrying samples or goods.
Full information on these uses and their suitability can be obtained by calling our advisors on 01323 481444.
What is No Claims Bonus (NCB)?
This is a discount awarded for the completion of 12 months continuous claim free insurance. NCB can only be earned and used in your own name and on 1 vehicle at a time. NCB is not acceptable if it expired more than 2 years prior to the inception of your new policy NCB is reduced after a fault claim. (Please refer to your policy wording for full details of NCB reduction). If you are unsure if your NCB is valid you can call our experienced advisors on 01323 481444 who will be happy to help and advise you.
What can I do if I have Zero or Low No Claims Bonus?
You may have zero no claims bonus as you have never held a policy in your own name before, have only ever been named on other people’s / company vehicles, purchased a second vehicle or lost them due to a recent claim. Whatever the reason, our on-line quotation system cannot offer the substantial discounts that we can give you by discussing your situation over the telephone. Call our specialists on01323 481444 and let them explain why having zero No Claims Bonus need not mean that you have to pay a great deal more for your insurance.
Are there discounts available for ex-company car/van drivers?
Yes, we have schemes which allow us to give you the equivalent discount to the number of years claim free company car/van driving experience you can confirm. Our insurance specialists will advise you further on 01323 481444.
Fault and Non-Fault claims’ what is the difference?
A fault claim is any claim resulting in your own insurer being liable (paying for the claim). e.g. you are not to blame for a theft claim but your own insurer would be liable (paying the claim), as they have no other party to recover the costs from. If your insurer pays for your damages in a claim (e.g. where a third party hit you) but then re-coups their costs via the third party’s insurer, then this would be a Non-Fault claim as your insurer was not liable (recovered their costs for the claim).
What is protected No Claims Bonus (NCB)?
This will allow you to make a certain number of claims arising from your own error or fault without affecting your no claims discount. Please refer to your policy wording for full details.
What is an insurance excess?
This is the first part of each and every claim which you (not your insurer) must pay. There are two types of excess:
- Compulsory excess: This is an excess that has been applied as a requirement by your insurer and will vary according to your personal circumstances and the terms of cover provided. A compulsory excess may be required if you drive a particular vehicle or you have inexperienced drivers on your policy. There is also a compulsory excess for fire, theft or windscreen claims
- Voluntary excess: This will apply where you agree with your insurer to pay a greater part of each claim, in addition to your compulsory excess. A voluntary excess can be increased or decreased at your request during your on-line quotation and it may affect your premium.
Where is classed as a hazardous/dangerous location?
Including, but not restricted to chemical/oil/gas works or refineries, nuclear/power stations, explosive/ammunition/pyrotechnic industries, military bases etc.
What is classed as foreign use?
All commercial insurance policies that we offer on-line provide the minimum cover you require to drive in any of the EU countries. Further assistance on extra cover can be obtained via your policy wording or by contacting us on 01323 481444.
How can I make my insurance cheaper?
There are a number of ways:
- Increase your voluntary excess: an excess is the first part of the claim that you have agreed to pay. By increasing this amount, therefore increasing the amount that you are willing to pay in the event of a claim your insurer will discount your annual premium. Remember, in a Non-Fault claim you may recover your excess via your legal assistance, which is explained under our legal assistance section
- Your vehicle: the value, type and engine size (cc) all make a difference, generally the cheaper and smaller engine vehicles generate lower premiums
- Security: having an alarm, immobiliser or tracker fitted to your vehicle, can generate premium discounts
- Annual mileage: be as accurate as you possibly can, as the lower your annual mileage, the bigger the insurers may discount your annual premium
- Where is the vehicle parked overnight: If you have a garage, it’s best to use it as insurers may offer discounts on your annual premium. If you have a driveway, enter this onto your quote, off-road parking such as communal parking areas must be entered as “road”
- Additional drivers: Only add drivers to your policy that use your vehicle on a regular basis. Limiting drivers limits your risk to the insurer and therefore decreases your annual premium. ‘Any driver’ policies are considerably more expensive, if you do require this, check all drivers ages as any driver policies over 25 (entered on quote as 25) may be more expensive than any driver policies over 30 (entered on quote as 30)
I don’t have breakdown cover, can I add it now?
Yes you can add breakdown cover at any point throughout the policy term. Depending on the type of policy you hold even if you were to add breakdown cover part-way through your policy it may still run for the full 12 months.
Why do I need motor legal assistance?
This additional cover will protect you if you incur any uninsured losses as a result of an accident that wasn’t your fault. Losses which are uninsured may include loss of earnings, personal injury, vehicle recovery within the United Kingdom, loss or damage to personal property and policy excesses under a comprehensive policy. This cover also includes credit repair.
When does my cover start and can a policy be backdated?
A policy usually starts at the time that the first payment or deposit is paid; however cover be started a few days in advance. Under no circumstances can insurance cover be backdated.
If I have an accident and I do not wish to make a claim, do I still have to notify my insurer?
Yes, it is always advisable to tell your insurer of any incident the insured vehicle is involved in, so that your file is always fully updated, even if no claim is to be made. All claims should be reported to 0845 839 9932 Quote : 1AN000 24hours:365days
A – Z of Insurance “Jargon Buster”
Act of God –
An unpreventable / unpredictable event, which could cause loss or damage to buildings, land, vehicles etc. and include events like lightning strikes or earthquakes, which are out of human control and cant be predicted. Insurance policies often exclude acts of God or acts of war, although they may cover natural disasters such as floods.
A car alarm is a device installed in a vehicle in an attempt to discourage theft of the vehicle. Most alarms work by making a loud noise, others send a signal to the owner warning that their vehicle is being disturbed. Some insurers will offer a discount if the vehicle is alarmed.
All risks –
An all risks section of a home insurance policy may cover possessions such as a laptop or watches when taken outside the home whereas your standard home insurance policy cover would not usually offer cover for such items away from the home. Some insurance companies will refer to all risks cover as personal possessions cover.
The Alpha-Dot property marking system can be used to protect almost anything, not just motorbikes. Hundreds of microdots are suspended in a clear adhesive, each of which carries the same, unique code. Because the transparent alpha-dots are incredibly hard to spot, a thief can never be certain that he has removed all of them from a stolen item, making them an effective deterrent to theft.
Ancillaries (SEE – optional extras) –
Ancillaries are additional products / optional extras that can be added on to a policy which provide extra benefits, for example legal cover and breakdown cover.
Annual mileage or annual business mileage –
In order for you to receive your vehicle insurance quote an insurance company or broker will want to know how many miles each vehicle covers in a year. The reason for this is the more miles spent on the road the greater the likelihood of an accident.
Annual mileage is the total mileage you do in a year.
Business mileage is the amount of miles you cover in direct connection with your employment or business.
Approved Repairer –
This is the vehicle repairer or mechanic that car insurance providers trust to provide good service and parts for your car after an accident or break down. Some providers will only pay for repairs made by an approved repairer and you will often receive quicker service where a pre-agreement is in place between an insurer and repairer.
Arbitration clause –
This is a clause in your insurance policy which states that if neither you nor your insurer can agree on an ‘appropriate claim settlement’ you both hire an arbitrator. The arbitrator elects an independent umpire who is neutral to both parties. A majority decision will decide the amount of the claim.
Association of British Insurers Group (ABI) –
The ABI represents the combined interests of the UK’s insurance operations, and promotes high standards of customer service in the insurance industry.
The number of bedrooms will usually be asked in order to give an indication of the overall size of a house. A bedroom is generally defined as a room either originally designed for sleeping in (even if now used for other purposes), or later converted for sleeping in. For example, a house extended by loft conversion into a bedroom would increase its total number of bedrooms.
Please refer to No Claims Bonus.
Breakdown cover –
This policy offers you various levels of recovery if you have vehicle problems at home or while out travelling dependant on level of cover requested). Check your policy to see if your provider offers services like mechanics and tow trucks, as different policies will offer various levels of cover.
A broker is an independent intermediary who sells one or a range of policies from various insurance companies. One reason why brokers have managed to compete in the marketplace is that they are able, in certain circumstances, to negotiate the premium directly with the insurance company which may lead to a cheaper premium. Brokers often offer face to face facility for customers to go in to speak with an advisor.
In recent years many brokers have had to adapt to be able to compete on all levels with direct writers and telesales call centres as well as offering internet solutions of various levels.
Buildings cover –
Buildings insurance covers the building itself, together with permanent fixtures and fittings which you own or which you are legally responsible for, within the premises. Buildings insurance is usually a requirement if you have a mortgage. Examples of what can be covered under buildings cover as well as the actual building (please check your policy for absolute) include:
Walls, gates and fences. Paths, drives, patios and terraces. Domestic outbuildings. Swimming pools. Tennis courts. Sanitary ware (bathroom fittings).
Cash / money –
The definitions of cash or money for home insurance purposes are:
Current legal tender, postal and money orders, cheques. Gift tokens, luncheon vouchers, traveller’s cheques, premium bonds, and travel tickets. Savings certificates and stamps. Unused postage stamps not forming part of a collection.
*Please check the insurance company definitions as these may be subject to change.
Certificate of insurance –
A document or certificate issued by an Insurance company as proof that insurance is in force, to meet the requirements of the law.
Claims & losses –
A loss is classed for insurance purposes as an event that has occurred and has resulted in damage to or loss of use of something.
A claim is an application to your insurance company to compensate you for that loss given the cover in force on your current policy.
Claims history –
Insurance companies will use any claims history you have as a factor for your insurance premium or renewal premium. Your claims history will help to assess the potential risk you pose as a customer. Some insurance companies will not look to insure anyone who has previously made a claim whether it is a claim for buildings or contents. It could also be that you have a claim during a policy which will leave you unable to obtain a renewal premium from your current insurer as you fall out of their insurance criteria. Fortunately however, there are plenty of insurance companies who will cover customers with previous claims and still offer competitive rates.
Comprehensive cover –
Please refer to Cover Type.
Compulsory excess –
Please refer to Excess. (see also ‘voluntary excess’)
An excess is the amount of money you will need to pay when making a claim on your insurance policy. The same excess is not necessarily needed by the different insurers you can choose from, but most insurers will require that you have a minimum excess on your policy. The amount may depend on the make and model of the vehicle, the type of claim that is made, the age of the driver / rider, the area in which he or she lives and possibly several other individual factors. Excesses will normally only apply to own damage claims, and not to any claim that is made by a third party.
Contents (Home) –
Cover for household possessions. As a rule, contents cover insures anything that can be moved which belongs to you or for which you are legally responsible while buildings cover insures anything that can’t, such as the windows or bathroom fittings.
Some examples of contents are:
Furniture (fixed furniture such as fitted wardrobes are covered under buildings). Radio and television aerials, satellite dishes, their fittings and masts. Property in the open but within the premises. Cash, credit cards, deeds, registered bonds etc. Medal, stamp or coin collections.
Jewellery, precious stones, articles made from gold, silver and other precious metals, watches and furs. Clocks, collectors’ items, pictures and other works of art.
Contents cover doesn’t always include jewellery and cash as standard so it is important to check the cover available and the limits of these items in the policy wordings.
Conviction code (DVLA Codes) –
You can look for these codes on a driving licence, which will also list the other details of the convictions including the date, length of ban (if any), amount of fine and penalty points. The code is normally about four figures long, and made up of letters and numbers. Some examples of conviction codes are:
IN10 – the code for using a vehicle uninsured against third party risks.
MS50 – for motor racing on the highway.
SP30 – exceeding statutory speed limit on a public road
SP50 – exceeding speed limit on a motorway
Cover note –
This is a document showing temporary proof of cover for a motorcar, van or motorcycle policy, while the policy and certificate are being prepared by the insurer.
Cover type –
Third party only (TPO)
This covers any claim by third parties. This does not cover damage to the driver’s own car.
Third party fire and theft (TPFT)
This covers fire and theft of the driver’s car in addition to third party only cover.
Comprehensive (Comp / Fully Comp)
This covers accidental damage to the driver’s car in addition to third party fire & theft cover.
Data Tag –
The Data tag electronic anti-theft system consists of tiny transponders that are hidden in your motorcycle, as well as Data dot microdots and other identification technology. This multi-layered identification system enables the police to identify the true owner of any Data tagged motorcycle, even if the number plate and identification numbers have been removed or changed.
Driving other cars (DOC) –
If your policy includes DOC then it will be stated on your certificate of insurance. This kind of cover will insure you when you need to drive a car which you don’t actually own, but have the permission of the owner to use it. Don’t forget that this cover is usually Third Party Only in the UK and cannot be used overseas and doesn’t cover vans, lorries, rentals, leases or cars owned by you. This kind of car insurance is meant to cover emergency use of other cars, and not all policies include it. You can check your certificate of insurance to see if it’s been included for you. DOC is explicitly for emergency use only.
Due Diligence –
This is the care that a reasonable person takes to avoid harming themselves, other people and their property. This means that you need to take care to try to prevent any harm from coming to you and the things you own. If it appears that you have not tried to avoid this kind of damage, you may not see full payment on an insurance claim.
Duty to Minimise Loss –
If something happens to your home or contents and you want to claim on your insurance, you need to make sure that you do everything you can to stop your property from being damaged any further.
Driver & Vehicle Licence Agency. www.dvla.gov.uk
An amendment made to an insurance policy which becomes part of the policy.
This is your contribution towards every claim which you must pay. There are two different types of excess:
A compulsory excess is an amount you are required to pay. This will vary according to your personal circumstances and the terms of cover provided. A compulsory excess may be required if you are a young driver, perhaps due to the type of vehicle you own or maybe even the area in which you live.
There is also a compulsory excess for fire, theft or windscreen claims.
A voluntary excess will apply when you agree to pay a greater part of each claim, and it is added to the compulsory excess. A voluntary excess can be increased or decreased at the quote stage. The insurance company may lower their premium if you are willing to pay more, should a claim occur.
Exclusions (home) –
Your policy will exclude certain risks or possessions. These are explained fully in your policy document. You should read this fully and speak to your insurer if there is anything you do not understand.
Common exclusions are theft if you have let or sub-let your house (or part of it) unless there is forced entry, or loss / damage arising if you leave your house unoccupied for long periods of time, usually more than 30 consecutive days.
Expiry Date –
This is the date and time on which the insurance cover ends.
Bodywork and/or windshield at the front of a motorcycle designed to deflect the wind. Can be attached to the frame and not move or be attached to the fork and move as the handlebars are turned.
Fault or non-fault claim –
The way to tell the difference between fault & non-fault claims comes down to whether or not the insurance company was able to recover all their costs from the third party involved.
There are situations where the insured can say that they were in no way responsible for a claim and yet still have the claim classed as fault. E.g. A theft claim where items have been stolen from a vehicle. Naturally the insured feels absolved of any wrong doing, however, as there is no third party to recover the cost of the stolen items from, the claim becomes a fault claim.
Fire insurance –
This will generally cover damage caused by fire, lightning or explosion.
Freezer cover –
Should the unfortunate occurrence occur where you have a power cut or your freezer malfunctions, freezer cover will offer cover for the loss of contents either by cost of total replacement or a cost to a maximum amount. The amount of cover depends on the policy purchased.
Fully Comprehensive –
This is a commonly used name which is actually incorrect, but is generally taken to have the same meaning as Comprehensive cover, described under cover type section.
Garden cover –
Some insurance policies will include cover for items in the garden and/or the garden itself. Garden cover may include the following, dependant on the policy: garden furniture or children’s toys, re-landscaping if damaged by fire, explosion, lightning, malicious persons, theft or attempted theft.
Glass Insurance –
This cover insures you against damage to glass listed in your policy.
Good state of repair –
Good state of repair is a property without structural problems. Examples that most insurers say would negate your home being classed as a good state of repair would be dry rot, rot or infestation requiring timber or window replacement, damp, roof or chimney stack damage, faulty wiring or incomplete construction.
Goods in Transit –
Goods in transit insurance covers property against loss or damage while it is in transit from one place to another or being stored during a journey. You can take this insurance out for goods being distributed in your own vehicle or by a third-party carrier, both domestically and abroad. Generally goods in transit policies will cover you for:
Theft – while in transit. Loss – while in transit. Damage caused by accidents during transit. Damage caused during transit.
Green card (Driving abroad) –
Most policies will offer some level of cover as standard, perhaps RTA (Please refer to Road Traffic Act) or TPO Cover (Please refer to Cover Type) whilst driving in Europe. However, it is critical that you confirm this cover exists on the policy before you drive abroad. Claims can be very expensive and may even lead to possible driving convictions.
Gross Vehicle Weight –
The maximum loaded weight, including the vehicle itself, passengers, and cargo, for which a vehicle is designed and as specified by the manufacturer.
The carriage of goods for hire or reward and for social, domestic and pleasure purposes (excluding carriage of passengers for hire or reward).
Hazards are what are likely to affect any loss, damage or injury.
Hazardous Materials –
Vans which carry corrosive, toxic, explosive or inflammable goods to assist you in undertaking your trade (e.g. paint stripper, single calor gas bottle etc.) are examples of hazardous materials. There are of course goods which could be deemed far more hazardous to carry which may require more specialist insurance cover.
The upward movement of the ground supporting the building.
Home / property –
The private dwelling in which you live, its garages and outbuildings, used solely for domestic purposes.
High risk items –
High risk items are those items that are most frequently stolen from homes when they are burgled, possibly mainly due to the value or rarity of the items or the ease of moving the item from the home. Whilst there may be differences between insurance companies about what specifically classifies as a high risk item, the following list should encompass most of them:
Antiques. Articles of gold, silver or precious metals. Binoculars. Cameras and photographic equipment, Computer or laptops and equipment Curios. Furs. Jewellery. Paintings and other works of art. Stamp, coin and medal collections. Televisions. Video and audio or DVD equipment. Watches and clocks.
Home emergency cover –
There may be times when you need a little extra help in your home, especially if this involves the failure of household services you rely on. Home emergency cover is a practical way of having effective protection when household problems occur which, though common, are not always covered by standard home insurance. As with most things, each insurance company will offer varying levels of cover but you will more than likely find the following included in home emergency cover:
Central Heating. Electrical Failure. Lost Keys. Plumbing and Drainage. Security.
Hot Hatch –
A type of car based on an existing hatchback model, often with bigger tyres and wheels to improve road handling and to give more of an aggressive look, along with a more powerful engine to give increased performance. Some may also have revised suspension to give better handling or a firmer ride. Most hot hatches feature sporty interior trims, along with racing style steering wheels and bucket seats.
A panel or guard that prevents dirt or crud from the rear wheel and grease from the chain making the rest of the motorcycle dirty.
An electronic immobiliser disables the engine of your motor vehicle. More recent motor vehicles have these factory fitted by the manufacturer and the details of the immobiliser should be shown within the car brochure. It’s also possible to have an immobiliser fitted by a garage or specialist who would supply a certificate of installation detailing the exact model of immobiliser. Some insurers will offer a discount if the vehicle has an immobiliser.
Import or imported vehicle –
These are vehicles brought in from abroad that match UK specifications.
These are vehicles that are brought into the UK from abroad but differ from current UK specifications.
Indemnity means protection or security against damage or loss by compensation, or something by the way of compensation. In insurance terms this would generally equate to being put back in the same state or financial position you were in prior to a loss.
Insurable interest –
An example of insurable interest would be in order to insure a car it would need to be your own possession. So you could not insure your neighbours car, as if it is damaged or stolen then you incur no financial loss.
Insurance intermediary –
Please refer to Broker.
Insurance Premium Tax (IPT) –
This is a tax taken by the government, and comes as a percentage of the insurance premium. It’s good to remember that the amount of Insurance Premium Tax charged is shown as a separate item on any insurance paper work. IPT does not apply to policyholders who live on the Isle of Man or the Channel Islands.
Joint proposer –
An additional policyholder and joint owner of the home to be insured.
Kick starter –
A Kick starter is used to start a motorcycle. The kick starter is a pedal that is kicked downward to turn over the engine to start the motorbike. Each motorcycle equipped with a kick starter may have a different procedure to ensure successful operation. Kick starters were standard many years ago. Most modern motorcycles have an electric starter.
Kit cars –
A kit-car is an automobile that is available in kit form, i.e. you buy a set of parts that you assemble yourself. Usually many major mechanical parts such as the engine and transmission are taken from one or more donor vehicles. Kits vary in completeness from as little as a book of plans to a complete set of all the components required.
An agreement where each motor insurer pays for damage to its policyholder’s car, regardless of which driver is to blame, providing the policy covers damage to the policyholder’s own car.
A downward slip or movement of a mass of rock, earth or artificial fill.
Motorbike riders often wear as much leather as possible to protect them from the elements and the ground, should they fall. This means leather jackets, chaps, gloves, boots, and riding suits. Usually, the leathers are ventilated for cooling.
Legal cover –
A level of cover often offered as a separate cover or ancillary for a fixed fee. Legal cover is designed to help you through difficult and stressful legal situations, giving financial support to protect yourself and stand up for your legal rights.
Legal expenses cover –
Legal expenses cover is protection for certain criteria that would not usually be dealt with under motor insurance policies, including costs & expenses to further pursue claims, legal advice, personal injury or death due to an accident while insured.
Licence type –
There are a number of different licences that exist, i.e. UK Full, UK Provisional, EEC Full, International etc. From an insurance point of view you must have at least a provisional licence before you can legally drive on the road.
Listed building –
Listing ensures that the architectural and historic interest of a building is carefully considered before any alterations, either outside or inside, are agreed. Please note that the link in our quote process for rebuilding costs cannot be used for listed buildings. An independent authority must be used in these cases.
A loss is the event which causes you to seek payment from your insurance company by claiming.
Loss adjuster –
A loss adjuster is an impartial claims specialist responsible for investigating claims on behalf of insurance companies. The role involves examining the causes of loss or damage, confirming policyholders are covered by the insurance policy and assessing the validity of the claim.
Loss assessor –
A loss assessor has nearly the same job description as a loss adjuster, the main difference is a loss assessor works on the behalf of a client where a loss adjuster works on behalf of an insurer.
Main driver / rider –
Whoever drives / rides the vehicle the most is or should be classed as the main driver / rider. Given that this can be a major factor in how the insurer arrives at its premium, the insurer is well within its rights to invalidate a claim or even cancel a policy outright.
Material fact –
A material fact is any fact or circumstance that which would affect the judgement of an insurer in considering:
Whether or not to accept the risk. – If willing to accept the risk, at what rate of premium and on what terms and conditions.
For example: a speeding conviction such as SP30, is a material fact as it could influence the rating of a risk.
Any changes made to a vehicle that is NOT classed as factory standard. This could include engine modifications, alloys, spoiler or sunroof etc. Should you not disclose modifications on your car or vehicle when obtaining your policy, the insurer has the right to refuse payment for any claim or potentially invalidate your policy.
New for old –
New-for-old policies, also referred to as ‘replacement as new’ cover, meet the full cost of replacing items if they are stolen or destroyed, should the claim be deemed valid. Alternatively, the cost of repair will be met if the items are damaged. Some exclusions may apply with each insurer such as clothing or pedal cycles.
No Claims Bonus (NCB) –
For every year you hold an insurance policy, without a fault claim, you receive no claims bonus. This is a discount applied to premiums by an insurer which reflects a cheaper premium for, potentially, a safer risk or driver. So the more continuous years driving without a fault claim, the greater the discount applied. However, should you have a fault claim it is likely that your NCB will be reduced, unless you have protected NCB or PNCB (Please refer to Protected NCB).
No Claims Discount –
See above No Claims Bonus
Obligation to Notify –
You have to give the insurer all the information they require to work out the risk of insuring you. If it turns out you didn’t give them all of the information truthfully, without neglecting relevant details you may not receive payment on your claim.
Optional extras –
Please also refer to ancillaries.
Insurance companies and or Insurance sellers will often offer extra levels of cover for an additional premium. In some cases these optional extras are extensions of cover already included in the insurance quote and in other cases they are a completely separate cover, from the quote provided. Two ancillaries often offered are home emergency cover & legal cover.
Over insurance –
This occurs when the amount something is insured for is greater than its actual value. If a claim is made, only the replacement value is normally paid out.
Owner and registered keeper –
More often than not the owner and registered keeper of the vehicle is the proposer (Please refer to Proposer). This may not always be the case. Should the proposer for instance, be driving a company car, then the vehicle would most probably be owned by the company but possibly the registered keeper would be the proposer.
Pass Plus –
Pass Plus is a training scheme for new drivers. A number of insurers will offer discounts for taking these extra lessons. Please be aware that you will need to provide your certificate to the insurer if they allow a discount.
Personal possessions cover –
Personal possessions is a valuable extension to contents cover and generally insures clothing, baggage, cash/money, credit cards, sports equipment, prams, pedal cycles and other personal belongings that you wear or take away from the home in everyday life.
This includes cover for jewellery, spectacles, binoculars and telescopes, mobile telephones, keys, pedal cycles, sports equipment for social use and cameras.
The backseat on a motorcycle for its passenger. Also, a passenger is said to ride pillion.
Should a driver be convicted of an offence, for instance, speeding or dangerous driving, the driver will receive points on their licence. These will be a factor in how much the insurer quotes for their premium. More often than not the greater the number of points, the higher the premium quoted.
This is the person who has taken out the insurance with the insurer.
For home insurance purposes, this will be the risk address or household which requires the cover and is stipulated as the premises during the quote process. The premises or risk address will be shown in the policy schedule once cover has been issued.
The term given to the person who takes out the insurance policy. Another term you may see used for proposer is policyholder.
Protected No Claims Bonus –
Once you have accumulated a certain number of years NCB (Please refer to No Claims Bonus) insurers will allow you to protect your NCB. This means that should you have a fault claim then the number of years NCB will remain the same. However, this may not prevent your premium from rising as most companies rate on claims history as a separate factor.
Dependant on your insurance details or risk, an insurance company may or may not offer you a quote. Insurance companies look to cover certain areas of the market, so while one company will look to insure high grouped vehicles another may only insure lower grouped. Given this market targeting by insurers the premium offered can range from favourable to very expensive.
The q-plate is used to point out something more than a unique registration. Here are some of the main reasons why a vehicle would have a q-plate:
Built from unknown parts, unknown ages, or insurance write-offs.
Ex-military vehicles (Including Ex-Army, Ex-Navy & Ex-RAF Land Rovers and other forces vehicles).
This includes racking which maybe inside the vehicle to securely store tools etc and also outside of the vehicle for the temporary storage of goods (ie: pane of glass etc.)
This is the furthest distance you are likely to travel in miles from your place of work to the furthest point away from your place of work.
Insurance companies base the price of their policies on a number of factors such as driver’s age, postcode and driving history. This is commonly known as ‘rating’ in the insurance industry.
Re-building cost –
The re-building cost is the total cost of re-building your home if it was completely destroyed. It includes the cost of all professional fees, materials and labour including the cost of demolishing and clearing the old building.
As house prices continue to rise, you cannot guarantee that the re-building costs will automatically be lower than the purchase price/value of the house to be insured. Remember, that although the cost of the land was included in the cost of the house purchase, this would not be included in the re-building costs. If you have held insurance previously for the home you are insuring, your re-building cost or ‘buildings sum insured’ will sometimes be shown on your policy schedule or renewal notice. It may also appear on any survey or valuations carried out on your home, but if it is an old valuation, remember to adjust for inflation purposes.
The maximum number of revolutions per minute an engine can run before damage occurs. The name is derived from the actual red line manufacturers typically put on the tachometer.
Registered keeper –
Please refer to Owner and registered keeper.
Restrictor Kit –
If for instance, you hold a licence which will only allow you to ride a motorcycle up to 25kw (33 bhp) and a power to weight ratio not exceeding 0.16kw/kg, you can ride a motorbike with a power output over 25kw but you’ll need a restrictor kit on it to restrict the power output to 25kw.
In order for any insurance company to provide an insurance quote they must first evaluate the risk they are quoting for. This generally means looking at the customer’s quote details and assessing them by their claims history, the cost or type of the vehicle they drive and perhaps the area they live in.
Road Traffic Act (RTA) –
In 1930 the Road Traffic Act came into force to guarantee that cover would compensate the innocent victims of accidents. An example of this is third party property damage: the limit is £250,000.
Satellite navigation –
Various factory fit or retro fit devices to help you navigate to your destination. There has been some publicity about the rising theft of satellite navigation from vehicles which is frustrating enough for any insured driver. However, what has also been recently highlighted is that a growing number of insurers are treating SatNavs as modifications (Please refer to Modifications) if they are added to the vehicle after its manufacture NOT as a standard part of the factory fitting.
This gives policy details of how much cover you have (the sum insured), the discount you qualify for (if any), the period of insurance, the premium you have to pay and the sections that apply. With some policies you may get a new schedule when you renew the policy or whenever you change any policy details.
Please refer to Alarm, Immobiliser or Tracker.
A structure added to a motorcycle, resting on a third wheel, for carrying passengers. Rather dangerous for the non-specialists, this type of vehicle has considerably developed over the last few years, with articulated sidecars which lean into the bend with the motorcycle, or even single-bodied structures like the Side-Motorbike.
An individual running their own business (which is not a limited company or a partnership).
Single article limit –
This is the maximum amount that one item can be covered for, on your home insurance policy. The single article limit value is set by the insurance company.
Sole trader –
An individual running their own business (which is not a limited company or a partnership).
Special Conditions –
Special Conditions are any individual conditions which are in addition to the general conditions mentioned above.
Stripped down policy –
A stripped down policy is designed to keep the cost of car insurance as low as possible. It is a budget policy which excludes some of the benefits.