Car insurance - don't be fronting

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Don't risk doing this illegally
"Fronting counts as fraud and could invalidate the insurance policy and land both drivers with a criminal record"
  • | by Martyn John

Research from Gocompare.com has found that 1 in 10 parents* would take drastic steps to save their children money on car insurance by lying to insurers through a practice commonly known as ‘fronting’.

‘Fronting’ is when a lower risk – usually older – driver, insures a vehicle in their name, but the actual main driver falls into a higher risk category.

The idea behind fronting is to save the young driver money on their premium. However, it actually counts as fraud and could invalidate the insurance policy and land both drivers with a criminal record.

There are plenty of ways to keep young drivers’ car insurance premiums down that don’t involve erring on the wrong side of the law.

Here’s Covered mag’s top do’s and don’ts to legally reduce the premium costs for young drivers and help them get cheap car insurance.

Tell the truth

If ‘Liar, Liar’ taught us anything,  it’s that it’s always better to tell the truth.

If you thought that a few white lies was a good way of getting cheap car insurance, you’re not alone.

In fact, 20% of parents surveyed by Gocompare.com said they would gladly tell a white lie if it reduced their premium.

Realistically, lying to your insurer can (and will) invalidate your policy. Even worse, you could face criminal charges. In short, lying about your insurance is a bit daft.

Consider your usage

Most people are guilty of overestimate how many miles they drive annually.

Unless you’re planning on cruising across Europe on a road trip holiday, or you’re an ice road trucker – chances are you won’t be clocking up a massive amount of miles.

Look at your commute distance and how much you actually drive in your leisure time for an accurate reflection of how much you drive.

Think about telematics

Telematics or  'black box' car insurance is changing the way drivers - particularly younger ones - get covered. By allowing to have their driving monitored by their insurance company, new motorists can prove themselves to be a safe case, and potentially save a lot of money. Some telematics products grant access to an online dashboard which can help drivers improve their technique, too.

For more information on black box car insurance and telematics and frequently asked questions on telematics, step this way.

Add an experienced driver as a named driver to the policy

Though fronting is illegal because you’re lying about the identity of the main driver on the policy, adding an experienced driver as a named driver is perfectly legal and can significantly reduce a young policy holder’s premium.

Check your cover

There is often little or no difference in the cost of a comprehensive or third party fire and theft policy. So far from saving a young driver money on their policy, they could just be left with a poorer level of cover.

If you can, pay annually

Paying annually will usually result in your insurance being cheaper than if you pay in instalments.

However, paying a young driver’s premium in one payment is a tall order.

If you find that a large insurance premium is something you can’t pay off in one go – look into 0% credit cards.

These will allow you to budget monthly payments on the premium while still taking advantage of the annual payment discount. Just make sure you keep up with the monthly repayments, and be aware that the 0% terms are not permanent!

*From 16-24 September 2012, Gocompare.com commissioned Vision Critical to conduct an online survey among 1,030 randomly selected parents with children who are 13 years or older, from the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland, who are on the Springboard UK Forum panel.