Uninsured car drivers

AA welcomes the two-millionth uninsured warning letter

The Motor Insurers' Bureau (MIB) has issued the two-millionth warning letter to a driver whose car was neither insured nor subject to a statutory off road notification (SORN).

The warnings are due to the Continuous Insurance Enforcement (CIE) legislation of 2011, which seeks to remove uninsured vehicles on Britain's roads. CIE is operated by the MIB and the Driver & Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA).

Insure or SORN

CIE requires the registered keeper of a vehicle to either have insurance or declare a SORN, even if it is incapable of being driven. Letters are written to keepers whose vehicles are registered by the DVLA, are not subject to a SORN, and are not on the motor insurance database (MID)

Janet Connor, managing director of AA Insurance, said: "I welcome this milestone of the two-millionth warning letter being issued. Every month there are around 6,000 prosecutions for keeping an uninsured vehicle, which has led to a steady fall in the number of uninsured vehicles on our roads.

"It is estimated that uninsured and untraced drivers kill 130 people and injure 26,500 every year, which is unacceptable. And they add up to £30 to the cost of every car insurance policy. Research from the Association of British Insurers has shown that uninsured drivers are five times more likely than insured drivers to be involved in road collisions, and fail to comply with other road traffic requirements. They are are also more likely to be engaged in other criminal activity.

"The more uninsured drivers that are taken off Britain's roads, the safer everyone will be.”

If you receive an enforcement letter you must act quickly to either insure your vehicle or register it as SORN. Failure to act can result in a fixed penalty of £100; having the vehicle clamped or seized and disposed of; or, at worst, court prosecution and a fine of up to £1,000.

The minimum penalty for driving without insurance is £300, six penalty points and seizure of the vehicle. The maximum is disqualification and a fine of up to £5,000. Seized vehicles can be reclaimed on proof of insurance plus a fee of £150, and £20 per day up to 14 days. Vehicles not claimed in 14 days are crushed or sold.

Regardless of where your vehicle is kept, it must be insured unless it has been declared to the DVLA as off-road using a SORN.

  • Check your vehicle is on the Motor Insurance Database. If your vehicle is not on the MID you are at risk of being fined and facing court prosecution. You may also be stopped by the police and have your vehicle impounded, and possibly disposed of, if proof of insurance cannot be provided. If you know your car is insured, contact your insurer immediately.
  • Check your vehicle and personal details are correct on your policy documents.
  • If you're no longer the registered keeper, then notify DVLA.

27 November 2014