The United Kingdom is facing an unprecedented national health emergency, Coronavirus (COVID-19). As the government enforces important safety measures to secure the wellbeing of the nation, many people are asking what help their insurance provider can give in these trying times.
Here, experts at HIC answer your Coronavirus insurance questions.
We and all of our insurers are reassuring our motor and home insurance customers that we are offering enhanced help and support to those who may be affected by the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19). This commitment will be in place until the end of the Covid-19 restrictions, or until 31st December 2020, whichever is sooner.
Our commitments include waiving any requirements to extend cover for key workers who may need to drive to different locations, people who want to help their communities by transporting medicines or groceries to support those affected by Coronavirus and office workers who need to work from home. These follow on from guidance already issued by the Financial Conduct Authority.
Motor and home insurers have pledged to:
We are currently waiving all mid-term administration fees when NHS workers call to make changes to their policies. We believe this is the least we can do to help our NHS workers during these difficult times.
We will also automatically cover you to drive to work or more than one place of work if your travel arrangements have changed because of Coronavirus.
The answer depends on your circumstances and your vehicle. Your vehicle must have a valid MOT certificate, or your insurance could be invalidated.
If your MOT was due on or before 29th March 2020, you must ensure this is still carried out. Garages undertaking MOT tests have been deemed essential, so can stay open during the lockdown.
If your MOT is due on or after 30th March 2020, the DVSA has announced that all cars, van and motorcycles will have their MOT extended by 6 months. This means your certificate will remain valid for this extra amount of time and won’t invalidate your insurance policy. However, your vehicle must be kept in a roadworthy condition and drivers can still be prosecuted if they drive an unsafe vehicle.
Yes, we are still open and available for you. We have adapted the way we work to help protect our staff and keep our opening hours the same. You can also use the website to request changes to your policy and access policy information.
We will continue to do everything we can to provide the services you rely on and will do our best to keep you updated if services are affected.
These are challenging times for us all and we would like to extend our best wishes to you and thank you for your patience as we work to provide the best service we can.
Yes, you can continue to contact us by phone, email or you can also use MyHIC to access your policy, view your details and request a change.
You do not need to contact us to;
Since the Coronavirus outbreak started, as a broker, we have been working closely with our insurer partners to negotiate changes to premiums for our new customers, customers making mid-term changes to their policies and those renewing. We will continue to do this throughout the pandemic, and if any of the insurers issue refunds of premium to their customers, we will process these on their behalf.
If you don't normally drive to work but need to because of Coronavirus your insurance policy will now automatically cover you to drive to work. You do not need to contact us to update your documents or extend your cover.
It is a legal requirement to have valid car insurance unless you register your vehicle as being off the road and apply to the DVLA for a SORN. This means we aren’t able to ‘pause’ your motor insurance policy; it must either be active or cancelled.
If you intend to keep your vehicle off the road for a significant period of time, you may find it more cost-effective to change your policy to laid-up insurance cover, which we can offer.
Even when unused and parked on private property, cars can be damaged by accident or by fire and they can be targeted by thieves and criminals. With laid-up cover they remain protected but the policies are cheaper because they are not being driven and there is no third party or liability insurance needed.
Laid-up insurance is available at two levels, fire and theft or fire and theft plus accidental damage.
If you have been advised to self-isolate for any reason, your insurance policy will still cover you to drive. However, we strongly advise against driving (or other travel) during the government lockdown unless absolutely essential, especially if you’re self-isolating or showing symptoms. Please consider that your symptoms could impair your ability to drive, or that if you break down and need assistance you will put yourself and roadside assistance at risk of infection.
If a doctor has advised you not to drive because of a health condition that will affect your driving, the rules have not changed and you must not drive or you could invalidate your insurance.
If you are driving against government directives, depending on what they are at the time, and your vehicle is impounded, this is your legal responsibility.
If you’re using your own vehicle as a volunteer to collect and deliver medicine or groceries to support people affected by coronavirus, you’ll still be covered without needing to inform us.
We’d also like to thank you—we’re immensely proud of all our customers who are playing a role in fighting this pandemic, whether by volunteering, working in essential services and care, or just by staying home and saving lives.
If the new driver has car insurance that includes driving other cars (this will show on their insurance certificate) and they have your permission, they can drive your car, but they will only have third-party cover.
We recommend contacting us to add them to your policy as a named driver. If your policy is fully comprehensive, this ensures that any damage to your vehicle is covered when they use it.
You should make sure you contact us before the foreign use cover runs out, so that we can ensure that you have the cover you need abroad, which we have been extending for no charge. You may not be covered if you do not do this.
Please ensure that you follow the FCO guidance on travel both before you travel anywhere and while you are already abroad.
This situation is unprecedented in our time and unfortunately, we know it will cause some of our customers to lose their employment.
We are not applying any additional premiums when a customer has become unemployed as a result of Coronavirus. We are doing what we can to accommodate this - please get in touch to let us know your circumstances, either by phone or email us at [email protected]
We understand that this is a difficult time for a lot of people, and we will do what we can to help you with your insurance payments if you have been affected by Coronavirus. Please let us know if you are having difficulties with payment and we will see what solutions we can offer. Options available can include reviewing your policy to see if the premium could be reduced, or possibly granting a payment holiday.
Our claims line remains open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and the claims team are continuing to work alongside our insurers to progress any claims as quickly as possible. The current situation may mean some delays where it is unavoidable, but where possible, key workers are being given priority by insurers to keep them on the road.
We understand that driving habits will have changed for a lot of people due to Coronavirus. We have been working with our telematics provider to make sure that those following the lockdown order do not lose their safe driving discounts because they have been driving less. Equally, those still driving will continue to receive discounts for driving safely. We are therefore making sure that both regular drivers and those not driving will not have their renewal premium affected by the current situation.
Yes, you will still be covered to be rescued to the best of the ability of the breakdown provider but due to reduced service, wait times may be higher than normal. The operative sent to help will remain 2 metres away from you and you should do the same, in line with the current government guidelines. Please let us know when you call if you have been exposed to Coronavirus or are suffering any of the symptoms.
Herts Insurance will make sure that key workers are prioritised for recovery during this time.
Please make sure you always have the rescue number saved to your phone.
For contact information, visit the Contact Us page.