A whopping 20% of drivers aged 17-25 have committed a motor insurance fraud known as ‘fronting’, according to research by the Motor Insurers’ Bureau.
Fronting is where someone falsely declares that they are the main driver of a vehicle and takes out an insurance policy in their name, when in fact another driver is the main driver of the vehicle.
The most common scenario where this happens is with young drivers. A parent might take out car insurance in their own name for their child’s car and add their child as an additional driver on the policy – even though the child will be the main driver of the car.
Many drivers believe this is a legitimate loophole – but it isn’t. It’s motor insurance fraud.
According to the MIB, if, in the event of an accident, a driver’s insurance company discovers that the policy is being fronted by someone other than the main driver, they may refuse to pay out damages to the insured and seek to recover the costs claimed by the third party from the insured driver. In other words, the insurance may be invalid – so it’s also possible that the police would seek to fine or prosecute those concerned for driving without valid insurance.
On top of all of that, the young driver who is trying to cut the costs of their insurance is failing to do so – because they won’t build up any no claims discount unless they are the main policy holder.
One much better way to save money on insurance is for newly-qualified young drivers to take the Pass Plus course after they pass their test and then find an insurance company that will offer a discount to Pass Plus-qualified drivers. Some insurance companies offer up to 30% discount for this (click here for a quote from a company that recognises Pass Plus).
According to the MIB, another approach is find insurance companies that offer quickie no claims discounts – basically, drivers can get a full year’s no claims bonus in less than 12 months – sometimes as few as six months. (I don’t really know how this works, but it does, apparently).
Buying your car insurance directly online can help, too – some insurers offer cheaper prices online than over the phone. I’ve experienced this myself, so it’s worth a try.
Above all, choose a car that’s cheap to insure – something relatively modern, low powered, ‘normal’ and not modified – at all. Modifications make insurance premiums head for the stars – not a good idea.