Compulsory car insurance comes into effect for UK drivers

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The new legislation for compulsory car insurance in the UK caused a stir.

New legislation for compulsory car insurance in the UK caused a stir when announced in May, but drivers in the UK will have to simmer down about it as the law comes into effect today.

New laws in the UK will make it a legal requirement for motorists operating on UK roads to purchase car insurance. Otherwise, the car owners will have to declare their vehicles as 'off the road' in order to avoid taking out a policy.

The new scheme will have a multi-tiered system of penalties for uninsured drivers as well. If the authorities find a driver is uninsured, they will first be served with a warning letter. In the second instance, they will be required to pay a£100 fine. Should the driver still not either insure the car or declare it off the road, the car in question could be seized and possibly destroyed, while its owner could be taken to court and given a fine of£1,000.

Currently in the UK, some 1.4 million vehicles operate without car insurance. Authorities and experts have noted the problems caused by uninsured drivers and hope the new law will help to reduce these numbers.

"Uninsured driving is a serious problem in this country," Malcolm Tarling of the Association of British Insurerstold the BBC. "Not only are they more likely to cause an accident, but they also push up cost of insurance, which all honest, law-abiding drivers have to pay."

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