HM Insights

Coronavirus: What are the implications for MOTs and motor insurance?

The current government guidance in Scotland is that you should leave your home for essential travel only.

In the meantime, the Department for Transport is working with insurers and the police to make sure drivers are not unfairly penalised for not being able to get an MOT during periods of self-isolation.

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Insurance guidance for key workers

The Association of British Insurers (ABI) has confirmed that ‘key workers’ do not need to contact their insurer to update their documents or extend their cover for additional and necessary journeys. However, for those involved in a collision when making a non-essential journey despite the restrictions, the insurer may review their policy to consider whether the claim would be excluded.

MOT extension and insurance implications

The Government guidance regarding MOTs has been updated to confirm that your certificate will be automatically extended by six months if it was due to expire on or after 30 March 2020 and your vehicle is a car, motorcycle or light van. They have advised that it should be extended a few days before it was originally due to expire. The extension also applies to these types of vehicles that are due their first MOT test on or after 30 March 2020. This means that your insurance will still be valid for a further six months and your vehicle record will be updated so the police can confirm that you have a valid MOT.

It is also important that all vehicles are kept in a roadworthy condition, even if the MOT deadline has been extended. If an accident occurs due to a known fault with the vehicle it is unlikely that your insurance policy would not cover you, so it is best to ensure that any essential repairs are completed.

The Government guidance also notes that if your vehicle’s MOT expired on or before 29 March 2020 and the vehicle is required for essential travel, you must book an MOT as usual unless you or someone you live with has coronavirus symptoms. If this is the case, you are not permitted to take your vehicle for its MOT. This may mean that some vehicles will have to be registered as off the road (SORN) if the MOT and vehicle tax has expired during a period of self-isolation.

It is important to remember that during this time you may need to use your vehicle for an essential journey and therefore you still need to ensure that your vehicle meets road safety and environmental standards. Should you have any concerns with regards to your insurance policy cover, we would recommend that you check with your insurers directly, in order to avoid any disputes further down the line. For further information regarding the most up to date government guidance please visit: https://www.gov.uk/

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