The Motor Trade Industry is one of the largest in the UK, and it covers many different occupations, from car salesmen, tradesmen, to mechanics and parts specialists – each of these occupations having many other niche markets within them. The Motor Trade Industry effectively creates one big umbrella of occupations, all of which need the correct insurance cover, and that’s where things seem to get confusing for a lot of people.
Judging from what circulates online in terms of questions and queries that people have regarding their Motor Trade Insurance, it’s not 100% clear what people need when it comes to legal requirements or specific business specialities. There are a number of areas that a company could need covering, so it varies from one proprietor to the next. The important thing is making sure that when you’re obtaining insurance from an insurer or broker, you’re getting the cover you want, to fit your business needs as closely as possible, so asking them the questions is key.
C.I.E. – three very important letters within the Motor Trade Insurance sector. C.I.E. stands for Continuous Insurance Enforcement, and is the DVLA regulation that a vehicle must be insured unless it is declared as off the road by a Statutory Off Road Notice (SORN). If a vehicle shows as uninsured without a SORN being submitted, then they will receive an Insurance Advisory Letter or IAL. This will notify them that it has been spotted, and unless they take action, they will be fined. If no action is taken it will result in possible seizure of the vehicle, a court prosecution and £100 fine. This further stresses the importance of having the correct insurance cover.
When it comes to who is and who isn’t covered to drive your vehicles, it quite simply boils down to “those that are on your policy”. If someone is not named on your insurance, then they are not covered, and many companies don’t offer insurance for drivers that are younger than 25 years old. The only exception being Demonstration Cover that you can obtain as part of the policy, for customers to test drive vehicles before they buy. Judging from posts and forums online, it’s not very often that people are aware that they can drive a vehicle for up to 14 days before having to add it on to their policy.
The above points are only a handful of many to consider when buying insurance for buying and selling vehicles – the most common occupation in the Motor Trade. When talking about more niche occupations such as a car mechanic or valeter, the main factors can be a completely different ball game, due to the nature of the job at hand. Whereas Motor Dealers will focus on the vehicles on their policy, and what vehicles they’re covered to drive, Valeters may focus on business equipment cover or public liability insurance instead.
On top of that, there is always cover available for your premises, tools, equipment and stock. Combined insurance is the way to go if you want every sector of your business covered, as it provides a good umbrella over your company as a whole. Motor Traders tend to favour this sort of insurance and it has been commented that it makes things a lot easier as all the insurance is sorted by one company.
Quite often online, I have seen part-time traders asking if they’re eligible for Motor Trade Insurance, and the answer to their question is “maybe”, as it all depends on a number of things, such as business type and location, but sometimes these can simply just be contributing factors to the price and level of cover you can obtain. The majority of the time, you can get covered over the phone, immediately after speaking to an insurance company. This helps proprietors get going with business as soon as possible.
If you wish to get the exact cover that you want, you just need to make sure you’re asking the insurers or brokers the right questions. How much you’re covered for, and what sort of vehicles you can drive on your policy – they’re all important details that you need to go over, so you know the policy inside out. Asking these questions once you’re already insured is too late, and proof that you haven’t persevered enough to get the right cover.