Third party car insurance may not be the cheapest option

The party season is on us and lots of drivers will ask mates to take the wheel and drive them home because they have had one too many at the works do.

After all, it’s legal and reasonable to hand the keys to someone else rather than risk drink driving.

The trouble is asking someone else to drive your car could mean neither of you are insured, even if you think you are.

The likelihood is the driver may not have insurance cover at all – or much reduced cover even if comprehensive insurance is in place for his or her own car.

Car insurance firm refused crash payout

Take the recent case of Brian Wharton, 57, in Yorkshire. He has comprehensive insurance and thought he was covered to drive his partner’s car. He was driving her home when they drove in to a stream, writing off the £5,000 Ford Focus.

His insurance company refused to pay out because his comprehensive cover only related to his own car – when driving his partner’s he only had third party car insurance.

Third party car insurance only meets the costs of damage or injury claimed by the other party.  That means any damage to the car driven by someone with third party insurance comes out of his or her own pocket.

Comprehensive cover is the cheaper car insurance

The other type of third party motor insurance adds in fire and theft cover

This covers claims for damage or injury a driver causes for someone else, and the driver’s own vehicle against fire or theft.

Many drivers believe opting for third party insurance also means cheap car insurance – but a recent survey by an insurance comparison site revealed that this is not necessarily true.

The average cost of comprehensive car insurance was £400, while the average costs for third party insurance were £822.56 (third party) and £559.65 (third party fire and theft).

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