Stickers showing loyalty to sports teams or political views could now void your car insurance, disclosed an inquiry.
Even paint security products, which are frequently awarded to fresh vehicle customers, present the danger of invalidating an engine policy if they are not disclosed to the insurer, researchers found. While every motorist understands that accumulating penalty points or purchasing a vehicle with a more strong engine will probably boost their premiums, insurers are more prescriptive than many riders realize.
The problem is what matters as a 'modification' to the vehicle-and some startling instances were discovered by researchers from Auto Express magazine. Although paint cover may not appear to present any extra danger to the insured car, some insurers may consider it a 'modification.' This implies not saying it is an infringement of certain rules, with some insurers requiring that they understand completely any departure from the normal requirement of a car.
While some additions to your car are obvious candidates for telling your insurer about, many motorists will be surprised by the strict definition of modification, and how even a sticker in the back window could void your policy" - Hugo Griffiths, Auto Express Consumer Editor
In the event of stickers, advertising loyalty to a sports team or a political point of view may threaten the car with vandalism-with the insurer ignoring the enhanced danger if the stickers are not proclaimed. Even the cautious insurers can classify formal factory-fitted alternatives as' non-standard' if they boost the' value, efficiency or attractiveness of a car to robbers.'
Hugo Griffiths added:
BIBA’s work and our investigation revealed, that there are two definitions of a modification available to insurance firms. While one considers a car unmodified as long as it is unchanged from the state in which it left the factory, another stipulates that factory-fit options could make a car modified.
Failing to declare something as humble as paint protection film or different alloy wheels could void a policy entirely, potentially costing thousands in the event of an incident, and even putting motorists at risk of a £300 fine and 6 penalty points.
And, in the case of potentially controversial messages on stickers, it’s best to keep your opinions to yourself, or be prepared to share them with your insurer.