What do I need to tell my car insurance company?

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Find out what you need to tell you car insurer during your policy term with this handy guide from car insurer Admiral

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Arranging car insurance can feel like quite the chore.

Filling in your details, your car's details, any named driver you'd like to add and all of their information - after setting up car insurance you probably find you know a lot more about yourself than you did before.

But what happens once your policy is up and running? Do you know what you're expected to tell your insurer and when?

Well, to save you worrying we've put together this handy guide of information you may need to tell your insurer during your policy term.

This list is everything we ask our customers to tell us; if you're insured with another company, the things you need to tell them and when may vary. If you're unsure about whether you need to tell your insurer something, you should give them a ring. 

Things you need to tell your insurer immediately

There are somethings your insurer needs to know about straight away and certain information that - if inaccurate - could impact on your policy. 

You have an accident

If you are unlucky enough to be involved in an incident no matter how big or small, you need to inform us. Even if you aren't planning on making a claim yourself the third party might so we need to have your version of events. We also need to know about anything which could affect the condition or value of your car.

You sell your car

You may think it's an obvious one, but sometimes it's the simplest things people forget. You need to let us know if you're no longer the registered keeper of the car to avoid being liable for anything happens to it and so as not to invalidate the new owner's insurance.

You change your address

Where you keep your car is very important for lots of reasons. Certain areas are considered high risk for car crime and accidents, that's taken into account when you first start your car insurance policy. You need to let us know as soon as you change your address during the policy term so we are able to contact you and send your renewal documents or any other important documentation to the right person. Same goes for your email address.

You change where your car is parked at night

Usually keep it on the drive but now need to keep it on the street? You need to let us know straight away just in case something happens. For example, if you've told us the car is on your driveway at night but someone smashes into it because it's parked on the road at midnight, it could invalidate your insurance.

You change your annual mileage

If you said you were going to do an annual mileage of up to 5,000 when you started your car insurance policy but find you're travelling a lot further than expected, you need to let us know immediately. Underestimating your annual mileage could invalidate your insurance in the event of a claim.

You or your named driver's circumstances change

You'll need to let us know if your name, occupation or country of residence changes.

Your driving licence status changes

Whether it's you or your named driver, we'll need to know if there's a change to your licence in case you get pulled over by police and they need to check your details against the Motor Insurance Database. If you've changed your name but not told us it could land you in a sticky situation. You'd obviously need to let us know if you or any named drivers have had your licence revoked, suspended or if you've been banned from driving.

The registered keeper of the car changes

Whether it's you or your named driver, we'll need to know if there's a change to your licence in case you get pulled over by police and they need to check your details against the Motor Insurance Database. If you've changed your name but not told us it could land you in a sticky situation. You'd obviously need to let us know if you or any named drivers have had your licence revoked, suspended or if you've been banned from driving.

Things you need to tell your insurer before you do them

If you're planning changes to your car or want to update your policy, you need to let your insurer know ahead of time. 

Modify your car

That doesn't just mean adding a rear spoiler to your BMW, you'll also need to let us know if you're re-spraying the car, making cosmetic changes or adding any modifications that affect performance. There is the chance we won't be able to cover the modification at all. A modification may also result in an increased premium so it's best to find that out first.

Change your car 

A different car could well mean a different price. It's always better to find out before you buy a new run around whether you can get it insured - younger drivers may not be able to insure high powered cars for example - or if it's going to cost you a lot more. Ring customer services to let us know the make and model of your new car.

Change the use

If you suddenly start using your car for business but have previously only used for social or commuting use, we'll need to know about it. You'll need to tell us before you start using your car for any alternative purpose as we may be unable to cover certain occupations. As we don't provide company car insurance we'll need to know details of what the car will be used for. You'll also need to tell us if you need to change the use from social use only to commuting use or an alternative type of business use.

Let someone else drive

If someone is going to drive your car regularly you will need to add them as a named driver. It's important to tell us about this before they start driving your car to make sure your car has the right cover in place. We will need to know their name, age, occupation and driving history.

Change the car's registration plate

To avoid being pulled over by the police for having no insurance. The police can search the DVLA's database to check whether cars with certain registration plates are insured, if you drive past with a new plate but haven't updated your insurance, you could face points on your licence. Or worse, your car being confiscated and crushed.

Drive abroad

Your car has cover in any country which is a member of the European Union and your insurance automatically includes an International Certificate of Motor Insurance, however, you should still give us a call beforehand to let us know you will be out of the country.

Things you need to tell your insurer at renewal

Some things can wait until it's time to renew your policy. 

Penalty points 

If you or any named drivers receive a fixed penalty, motoring conviction or are disqualified during your policy term you must tell your insurer at renewal, using the DVLA conviction code. You must also declare attending any driver awareness courses. You don't need to mention parking fines.

Any claims

You'll need to tell us about any accidents or incidents whether fault or non-fault that you or your named drivers have had during the previous year. Even if the claim wasn't made through us or was in a car that isn't insured with us, you'll still need to let us know.

Anything that doesn't look right

If any information on your Motor Renewal Confirmation Form doesn't look right or has changed since last year, let us know so we can make sure everything is up-to-date.

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