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Lockdown speeders face hefty insurance penalty
- Police warn drivers using quieter roads ‘as their own personal racetrack’,
- Drivers with speeding convictions face a minimum of 35% higher insurance premiums,
- Motorway speeders could end up with a dangerous driving conviction and find it much harder to get insurance, or a ban.
As police forces report a dramatic rise in speeding on the UK’s deserted roads, GoCompare Car Insurance warns that in addition to posing a serious risk to other road users and increasing the pressure on emergency services, drivers caught speeding face much higher insurance premiums or a driving ban.
Government advice to stay at home to combat the spread of the coronavirus has dramatically reduced the volume of traffic on the roads but, police forces across the country are warning that a minority of drivers are recklessly using quieter roads like a racetrack, with some driving at extreme speeds.
Speeding offences are divided into three main categories (Bands A to C) based on seriousness, with penalties of increasing severity to reflect the seriousness of the offence. Penalties depend on several factors including by how much the speed limit was exceeded by and, the type of road.
Most prosecuted speeding offences fall into the lowest category, these generally lead to a speeding ticket (Fixed Penalty Notice). Provided the driver accepts responsibility, they will be fined a minimum of £100 and receive three points on their licence, unless they have been given the option of attending a speed awareness course instead of prosecution.
In addition to larger fines, drivers committing a Category B speeding violation face between four and six penalty points, Category C offences result in six penalty points or a driving ban. Penalty points remain on driving licences for four years from the date of the offence.
When applying for insurance, drivers are required to disclose any motoring offences they have been convicted of, including speeding. Drivers who have opted to attend a speed awareness course will not have their speeding recorded as a conviction but may still be required to disclose their attendance to their insurer, if asked to do so. Drivers failing to tell their insurer about any speeding convictions they hold risk invalidating their cover.
Motorists convicted of speeding will typically pay more for their insurance because insurers deem them to be a higher risk. The size of the increase will depend on the driver’s individual circumstances (age, experience, vehicle, etc.) and the severity of the offence.
For example1, a 30-year-old female, driving an Audi A3, living in London would pay £1,084 for cover if they had no driving convictions. The cost would increase by 34% to £1,450 if they were convicted of speeding with three points on their licence.
A 50-year-old male in Norwich driving a BMW 535 DGT M Sport, convicted of speeding on the motorway (6 points), could see their premium rise 35% from £712 to £961. However, if it was deemed to be dangerous driving, his existing insurer could charge far more, and many other insurers might decline to offer a price.
Lee Griffin CEO and one of the founders of GoCompare commented, “Speeding is a common driving offence, but having penalty points on your licence will almost always increase the cost of your insurance. How much more you’ll have to pay will depend on your insurer and your individual circumstances. The kind of reckless speeding many police forces are currently reporting, could carry a very hefty price for motorists.
“Insurers take differing views on motoring convictions and price accordingly. Some insurers will swerve speeders altogether, while there are others that will provide cover, at a price. So, if you are convicted of speeding, or another driving offence, you need to shop around to find the best deal.
“Don’t be tempted to cut the cost of cover by withholding the truth. You’re legally required to tell your existing insurer about any penalty points you hold and declare them when applying for a new policy. If you don’t, you could invalidate your insurance and any claims you make could be rejected.
“By being untruthful in order to get cheaper cover, you also run the risk of being charged with insurance fraud.”
For more information on how motoring convictions affect insurance visit: https://www.gocompare.com/car-insurance/guide/how-driving-convictions-impact-car-insurance/
For further information please contact:
Anders Nilsson or Louisa Marsden at GoCompare on 01633 654 054 / 01633 655 132
Gordon, Jason or Liz at MAW Communications on 01603 505 845
Keep up-to-date with GoCompare on Twitter; @GoCompare
Notes to editors
1Comprehensive car insurance premiums calculated as at 22 April 2020. Based on a SP30 and SP 50 speeding offences committed in Jan 2020.
GoCompare is a comparison website that enables people to compare the costs and features of a wide variety of insurance policies, financial products and energy tariffs.
GoCompare does not charge people to use its services, and it does not accept advertising or sponsored listings, so all product comparisons are unbiased. GoCompare makes its money through fees paid by the providers of products that appear on its various comparison services when a customer buys through the site.
When it launched in 2006, it was the first comparison site to focus on displaying policy details rather than just listing prices, with the aim of helping people to make better-informed decisions when buying their insurance. GoCompare has remained dedicated to helping people choose the most appropriate products rather than just the cheapest, and has teamed up with Defaqto, the independent financial researcher, to integrate additional policy information into a number of its insurance comparison services. This allows people to compare up to an extra 30 features of cover.
GoCompare is the only comparison website to be invited to join the British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA) and is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).