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Insurance broker urges movers to regularly check driving licences

Nov 04, 2015

Specialist insurance broker Reason Global is reminding moving companies of the need to maintain up to date checks on their drivers’ licences following the abolition of the paper counterpart in June. As most operators will be aware, the paper counterpart is no longer valid and cannot now be used to check a driver’s entitlement to drive, or if they have been convicted of a driving offence. Failure to report a driving conviction to the company’s insurers could result in difficulties in the event of a claim.

Since 9 June employers are required to go online to check their employees’ driving record but to do so they must first ask their drivers to obtain an access code from the DVLA website. The code must be used within 21 days of being issued and may be used only once.

The Department for Transport recommends checking licences at least annually but urges operators to risk-assess their driver and vehicle profile and consider more frequent checks if they are deemed to be appropriate. For example, companies with a high percentage of young drivers or people newly arrived from overseas may wish to carry out quarterly checks.

Reason Global Director John Luker said, “Checking drivers’ licences is more time consuming than it was in the days of the paper counterpart. As a prudent vehicle operator it is still important to maintain regular checks and where necessary inform the insurance provider if there are changes to a driver’s status.”

All insurance contracts work on the principal of ‘utmost good faith’, in other words both parties are legally obliged to reveal any information that may influence the decision to provide cover. While in practice a relatively minor driving offence may not adversely affect the outcome of a claim, a more serious infringement may well do so and it is the responsibility of the insured to keep information insurers have up to date and accurate.

The consequences of a claim being rejected by an insurance company could be catastrophic, so having a robust system in place to regularly check driving licences and keep insurers informed of any changes is vital.

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