The flexibility to keep you motoring during the pandemic

One in five of all detections for motorists under the age of 30 in Northern Ireland in the last year was for no insurance, according to Psni figures
Diane Johnston

IT'S a worrying fact that the most common motoring offence committed in Northern Ireland during the past year was having no insurance.

According to the figures from the Psni, between November 1 2019 and October 31 last, there were 8,134 insurance-related offences committed across the region.

The statistics also reveal that one in five of all detections for motorists under the age of 30 was for no insurance.

The motor insurance market has been challenging, and figures from market intelligence specialists, GlobalData have revealed that SMEs across the UK, struggling with the impact of Covid-19, are cancelling their insurance policies.

Motor lines have been hit the hardest. In fact, all six of the most cancelled policies during 2020 in the UK were vehicle based, with single van insurance being the most cancelled policy type.

With people working from home and face-to-face meetings put on hold, many company fleet sizes have also been impacted.

The ongoing pandemic is having a major impact right across society, but cancelling insurance policies should be a last option. As can be evidenced from the police figures, the PSNI will not tolerate anyone caught driving without insurance.

If you are struggling to meet your payments, then you need to speak to your insurance provider as there are a number of options which can be explored.

For example, large numbers of people are working from home, with their cars only doing a fraction of the miles they were doing before coronavirus struck. However, instead of cancelling your policy it is advised to keep it in force as you will still be covered against theft and accidental damage.

If your circumstances have changed then speaking to your provider is the smart choice. Arrangements can be made to adapt your policy to reflect your reduction in travelling which may have an impact on repayments.

Instead of paying your insurance in one payment, it may be worth spreading the repayments over the course of the year to help with cashflow.

If cancelling your policy is a must, then you need to declare your vehicle as being off the road by completing a statutory off-road notification (Sorn) declaration. This will be essential in helping to ensure that you can obtain new cover again when you need it.

The best insurance brokers will tailor a policy specific to your needs with the flexibility to change as your needs change during these chaotic times. This applies to both personal insurance and fleet insurance policies.

:: Diane Johnston is SME manager at AbbeyAutoline (

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