CAR INSURANCE NEWS ROUNDUP: 7 DAYS ENDING 21 AUG 2013:
You know sometimes it’s hard to keep my sunny disposition when I keep reading how insurers are bloody determined to make things as hard as possible for us.
Now before you start rolling your eyes and tell me that I’m just complaining for the sake of complaining, hear me out: did you know that even as car insurance rates are finally beginning to decline, insurers are charging motorists more if they’re suffering from jobs losses or going through messy divorces? I know it sounds mad but it’s true – or at least it is, according to a research study recently conducted by consumer campaigners Which?, and I’ll be honest – it’s going to boil your blood.
Because it’s not hard enough to pay car insurance companies the exorbitant sums they want for the privilege of annual comprehensive cover, the unemployed were found to, in some instances, be paying premiums 22 per cent higher than those gainfully employed. Essentially there’s no sympathy for you if you’ve been victimised by the current economy and have been made redundant – in fact, insurers are penalising you for something that’s completely out of your control, just because they can apparently.
I swear it’s enough to make anyone anti-social and angry, but wouldn’t you know it that there are new rules in the planning stages that could see you paying even more because you’re miserable and upset. Specifically you could see fines of £100 and risk having three points deducted from your licence if you’re caught cutting off other motorists, tailgating, or hogging the middle lane, proving that the Government wants nothing more than to make sure you’re even more angry and upset than you were before.
There is one good thing in all of this, though – these rules are highly unlikely to be enforced, thanks to budget cutbacks. Traffic police figures are dropping precipitously due to scaled back austerity budgets, and police personnel say it’s going to be an uphill battle to enforce any new traffic regulations with so few police officers actually on the road.
It’s cold comfort for anyone who ends up actually being stopped and slapped with a fine, of course – especially since most insurers will likely look at your driving record and take the fact that you’ve got a motoring offence as an excuse to raise your rates even higher. So let’s imagine this: you’ve lost your job, your marriage has ended poorly, and you’re so upset about this that you get caught driving in an anti-social manner. Then, when it’s time to renew your motor car insurance, you get offered a ‘competitive’ quote for some astronomical amount. I swear it’s a good thing guns are illegal in this country.