New laws aimed at cutting the number of uninsured drivers on the road announced earlier this year come in to force from April 1
The DVLA and insurers are stepping up a campaign to promote awareness that will include leaflets highlighting the risks coming through the post with vehicle excise licence renewal forms.
David Evans of the DVLA said: “We know that uninsured drivers are a menace on our roads and add around £30 a year to honest motorists’ premiums.
“It is important motorists understand the change and how it will impact on them. That is why we offer clear advice to help motorists understand the new rules.”
Latest estimates are that around 1.4 million (4%) of motorists drive uninsured. About 242,000 offenders are convicted for uninsured driving every year.
The consequences of driving without insurance are:
- Vehicle seized by police
- £200 fixed penalty
- £150 plus £20/day to recover the vehicle
- Six penalty points and/or disqualification
- Owners must show proof of insurance before the vehicle can be returned
The consequences of keeping a vehicle without insurance, under the new system, will be:
- Motorists will receive a letter telling them that their vehicle appears to be uninsured and warning them that they will be fined unless they take action.
- The owner will be fined £100 each time they fail to insure their vehicle.
- If the vehicle remains uninsured – regardless of whether the fine is paid – it could then be seized and destroyed.
Vehicles with a valid Statutory Off Road Notice (SORN) will not be required to be insured.
The insurance scheme will be run by the DVLA and Motor Insurance Bureau.
Neil Drane, of the MIB, said: “The change in law is a stepping up of enforcement activity, so that not only those vehicles driven without insurance will be caught. Now the registered keeper must make sure that their vehicle is insured all the time. If it is, then they need not be concerned. The DVLA and MIB will be systematically checked, so that the levels of uninsured driving are reduced even further.”
The Insurance Blogger wonders why, with so many great deals on car insurance from the likes of Quoteline Direct, anyone would want to drive uninsured.