UK drivers no longer have to possess a motor insurance certificate to be able to legally drive a vehicle.
The Deregulation Act, which came into force yesterday (30 June 2015), removed the requirement for policyholders to actually have receipt of the insurance certificate in order for the policy to be valid.
The Act was part of the Government’s ‘red tape challenge’ launched two years ago and had already removed the need removed the requirement for insurers to deliver a hard copy of the certificate to policyholders, allowing them be transmitted electronically.
AA Cars welcomed the move and pointed out that in practice, it would make little difference to the majority of drivers who opt to receive their certificates electronically and/or renew their cover in
However, the move was likely to simplify the used car buying process: most motor retailers insist on sight of a certificate to ensure that the car is being legally driven away.
AA Cars director David Bruce said: “Although there was no legal requirement for a used car dealer to have sight of an insurance certificate the majority of responsible dealers wouldn’t release a vehicle until they had seen it.
“Such confirmation could now be provided by telephone, fax or email from an insurer, before the certificate is issued.”
In addition, the Act no longer requires insurers to recover certificates in the event of mid-term cancellation.
Bruce added: “In effect, the Act removes some anomalies that smooth the whole motor insurance process, making it more straightforward for insurers, dealers and customers.”