GENERAL QUESTIONS AND BACKGROUND INFORMATION ON MOTOR INSURANCE
Must I have Motor Insurance?
Third Party Liability motor insurance is compulsory in Ireland and throughout the European Union for all mechanically propelled vehicles. Fire, Theft and Comprehensive cover are additional benefits which motor insurance companies offer for an increased premium. It is important to note under compulsory motor insurance, the driver of the vehicle which caused the accident is never covered. It also needs to be understood that comprehensive insurance normally only covers the vehicle and not the driver.
All third party liability motor insurance policies are valid throughout the European Union for the full term of their cover. Additional benefits such as Fire, Theft and Comprehensive cover need to be negotiated with the motor insurance provider.
There are more than twenty insurance companies providing motor insurance. Such insurance may also be purchased through an insurance broker. For background information on various types of motor insurance consult www.ifsra.ie “Financial Products Guide: Motor Insurance. The Financial Regulator also conducts cost surveys on motor insurance. Check under “Current Surveys” on the same site for the most recent survey.
Motor insurance companies issue a disc together with a certificate of insurance. The current insurance disc must by law be displayed on the vehicle.
How do I get the best value motor insurance premium?
In seeking motor insurance it is usually worthwhile to get quotes from several suppliers. Many insurers will now give quotes online as well as over the phone. It is important to supply full and accurate information relating to both vehicle and personal circumstances so that the insurance cover purchased adequately meets your requirements.
What if no one will quote me or the premium is exorbitant?
There is a Declined Cases programme in place to deal with customers who cannot secure insurance from any source. The Declined Cases Agreement exists to facilitate motorists meeting their obligation to have third party liability motor insurance. It is operated by the Irish Insurance Federation. Details are available at www.iif.ie. Telephone (01) 6761914.
What happens if I have an accident with an uninsured driver?
In the case of accidents with uninsured drivers, the Motor Insurers’ Bureau of Ireland (MIBI) is the body which compensates the victims. To submit a claim you should contact the Bureau at www.mibi.ie .Their telephone number is (01) 6769944.
At the same time any claim for personal injury must be sent to the Personal Injuries Assessment Board (PIAB). This is the statutory body which provides independent assessment of personal injury compensation for victims of Workplace, Motor and Public Liability accidents. The PIAB can be contacted at www.injuriesboard.ie Telephone 1890 829121.
The basic legislation relating to compulsory third party motor insurance is contained in Part VI of the Road Traffic Act 1961, as amended. There is a body of EU legislation covering third party motor insurance. This can be viewed on the Department of Transport website www.transport.ie /roads/motor insurance
PROCEDURES IN THE CASE OF AN ACCIDENT
1. All road traffic accidents must be reported to An Garda Síochána.
2. All road traffic accidents must be reported by the motorist involved to their own insurer.
3. Obtain insurance, vehicle and contact details of all parties involved.
Please consult the Rules of the Road available on line at the Road Safety Authority website www.rsa.ie for correct behaviour at the scene of an accident and what to do in the case of an emergency.
4. Accidents in Ireland caused by an insured Irish motorist - making a claim
q Under EU and Irish law, all EU citizens involved in road traffic accidents have the right to seek compensation for personal injuries or property damage directly from the insurer of the motorist causing the accident. In Ireland, this is made easier by the display of motor insurance discs on all vehicles. The insurance disc gives the name of the insurer and the reference number of the insurance policy.
q However in instances where only the registration number of the vehicle is known by the injured victim, an enquiry can be made to the Motor Insurers’ Bureau of Ireland which can access the name of the insurer and the insurance policy number.
q All personal injury claims must be submitted to the Personal Injuries Assessment Board www.injuriesboard.ie naming the relevant motor insurance company or in the case of an uninsured accident, the MIBI.
q The motor insurance company or the MIBI must give a reasoned reply to the claimant within three months of the claim being made.
5. Accidents in Ireland caused by an uninsured Irish motorist – making a claim
q In the case of an accident caused by an uninsured driver, compensation can be sought from the Motor Insurers’ Bureau of Ireland. The Motor Insurers’ Bureau of Ireland web address is www.mibi.ie. Their phone number is (01) 6769944.
q The MIBI must give a reasoned reply to the claimant within three months of the claim being made.
q Again, all personal injury claims must also be submitted to the Personal Injuries Assessment Board www.injuriesboard.ie and in this case
naming the MIBI as the possible source of compensation.
6. Accidents abroad caused by an insured motorist normally resident in another Member State- making a claim directly to the insurer.
q Under EU and Irish law, all EU citizens involved in a road traffic accident in another Member State, other than their state of residence, are entitled to settle their compensation claim for personal injury and property damage in their country of residence and in their own language.
q Each motor insurer in the EU must appoint and authorise a Claims Representative in each other Member State to settle any liability in the language of the claimant.
q For Irish residents involved in an accident abroad, on their return to Ireland they should contact the Information Centre at the Motor Insurers’ Bureau of Ireland www.mibi.ie telephone (01) 6769944 to ascertain the contact details of the relevant Claims representative.
q The claimant may ask the Information Centre to obtain copies of the accident report made by the other motorist to their insurer. The claimant may also seek a copy of the police accident report from the relevant authorities.
7. Accidents abroad caused by an uninsured motorist normally resident in another Member State- making a claim directly to the Motor Insurers’ Bureau.
q For uninsured accidents, the Motor Insurers’ Bureau system represented in each Member State are authorised to settle any liability in the language of the claimant.
q For Irish residents involved in an accident abroad, on their return to Ireland they should contact the Information Centre at the Motor Insurers’ Bureau of Ireland www.mibi.ie telephone (01) 6769944 to ascertain the contact details of the relevant Motor Insurers’ Bureau.
8 . Accidents in Ireland involving a foreign person normally resident in another Member State and an insured Irish motorist - making a claim directly to the insurer
q For foreign residents involved in an accident in Ireland, on return to their country of residence, the claimant should contact their own Information Centre which will be able to ascertain from the Irish Information Centre, the insurer of the vehicle involved in the accident and the Claims Representative to contact about settling the matter. The claimants own Information Centre will communicate this information to the claimant.
q The Claims Representative acting for the motor insurance company must give a reasoned reply to the claimant within three months of the claim being made.
q Claimants resident in another Member State also have the facility to ask the Information Centre for copies of the accident report made by the Irish motorist to their insurer. The claimant can also seek a copy of the police accident report via their Information Centre.
9. Accidents in Ireland involving a foreign person normally resident in another Member State and an uninsured Irish motorist - making a claim directly to the compensation body.
q In the case of an accident caused by an uninsured driver, the claimant should contact and make a claim to the Motor Insurers’ Bureau in their country of residence. The claimant can also seek a copy of the police accident report via their Information Centre.
General enquiries may be made to the Department’s Motor Insurance Unit at Leeson Lane, Dublin 2, Ireland. Phone 00-353-1-6041014 or email to email@example.com