General Insurance Article - Brexit advantageous for motor insurers in some circumstances


With the possibility of a Brexit and therefore from European control of our laws, there remains an issue which could have an impact on both the obligations of insurance companies and the UK Government for accidents involving non-road registered vehicles, such as quad bikes. Lee Jones, managing director of York based Free Motor Legal explains.

 Currently a black hole exists where innocent victims injured in road accidents may go completely without compensation for their losses or injuries, no matter how serious. The scenario relates to vehicles which are not road-registered vehicles and therefore do not have the requirement for compulsory motor insurance.

 When this happens there is nobody to pick up the tab as there is no motor insurer connected with the vehicle and presently the Motor Insurers Bureau (MIB) are refusing to accept such claims as they state they are not required to deal with claims for vehicles which do not have a requirement for mandatory motor insurance (road registered vehicles).

 There have been directives set within Europe as to what member states and insurers operating within their jurisdictions should cover. This also impacts on the Motor Insurers Bureau (a UK organisation funded by UK motor insurers to deal with claims for victims of accidents involving either uninsured or untraced third parties). It appears that the drafted rules by which the MIB operates are not compatible with the insurance directives set by Europe. Lawyers argue the drafting of the 2015 MIB agreement is defective.

 The insurance industry have been dragging their heels on his matter since a landmark ruling on a Slovenian case in 2014 called Vnuk. If Britain remains in the EU then the pressure on the insurance industry will remain to fall into line and a consultation will be inevitable with the MIB most likely having to take up the slack of cases of uninsured non-road registered vehicles and there could be further implications for other insurers – possibly leading to an increase in insurance premiums.

 If however the referendum results in a Brexit, the insurance industry will quite likely make no effort to patch up the current shortcomings that stand to leave people with serious injuries without a source of being compensated. The only solution being to sue the Motor Insurers bureau and secretary of state for defective drafting of the MIB agreements and them not being compatible with European Motor Insurance Directives.

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