Pro’s and Con’s: Adding a Driver to Your Car Insurance

By August 28, 2017AUTO INSURANCE

While it is important to remember to add a named driver to your current car insurance policy, this is a routine procedure that need not be complicated. It is all about complying with the conditions set out in your existing car insurance cover. In some cases, adding a named driver, such as a family member who drives your vehicle regularly, can prove expensive, but this depends on the additional driver’s risk profile. Different conditions – and costs – may apply to non-family persons driving your car.

Adding Experienced Named Drivers Can Discount your Premium

We all know the loading insurance companies add in the case of younger drivers with little or no driving experience. If this describes you, adding someone more experienced to your policy could result in a cheaper premium for you. This is a good way to keep costs to a minimum when getting your first policy. We are assuming the named person you plan to add has a good driving record, with as few claims and points as possible; if this is not so, the converse may apply in the form of a higher premium.

Potential Pitfalls

You need to be thoroughly familiar with the conditions written into your car insurance policy. For example, you should remain the main driver and you need only name additional drivers if they do drive the car occasionally. If the additional driver you plan to name on the policy becomes the main vehicle user, this could end up as “fronting” by your insurer. Avoid this at all costs, as it is illegal and will likely invalidate your policy, and could lead to repudiation of any claim. Some insurers may even take you to court.

Adding a Driver to Your Car Insurance Who is Younger

Because insurers regard under-25 drivers as the riskiest group, adding an inexperienced named driver to your policy will almost certainly hike your premiums. It seems logical to consider removing a student son or daughter from your annual policy if they are not living at home. Rather take out temporary cover, which will allow them to drive when they return home on vacation.

There is one exception to the scenario sketched above, and the one instance where it could prove advantageous to add a less-experienced driver to your policy. Allowing them accumulate claims free bonuses while not the main driver could be to their advantage over time. The assumption here is that the younger driver manages to avoid any claims while driving your auto!

What about Learner Drivers?

Many insurers simply refuse to allow naming a learner driver because of high claim risk. Adding a driver to your car insurance in terms of this scenario is not going to work. Rather consider a separate learner driver policy, although it is going to prove expensive.

Factors Affecting the Cost of Adding a Driver

Many factors affect the cost of adding a driver to your car insurance. Your insurer will consider their:

  • Driving history, claims and convictions
  • License type, how long they’ve held it
  • Relationship to the policyholder
  • Age and marital status

One Last Thought

If a named driver has an accident in your car, and you have to claim, it will increase your insurance costs in future and affect any no-claims bonus (NCB). When adding a driver to your car insurance, you should first know what kind of driver they are, and what risks they pose on the road while driving your car.

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