Premium prices drop, fraud incidents go up; welcome to 2014

Van insurance news roundup: 7 days ending 3 Jan 2014:

IThe New Year is upon us, and that means this week it’s nothing but new annual reports coming out; unfortunately it’s very much a mixed bag going into 2014.

First off, if you remember this time last year there was an absolute riot in the car insurance industry because the EU Gender Directive had just gone into effect a few weeks prior. The sky was definitely falling when it came to premium price predictions, as the new EU rules that forbade using gender as a determination for car or van insurance rates was supposedly going to ratchet up prices into the stratosphere for female.

Meanwhile, a major insurance comparison site released its annual price report this week, and it looks like that a year on from the gender directive has led to lowered premiums across the entire industry. Both women and men are paying less on average than they did just 12 short months ago, though there were some discrepancies when it came to young Brits – those unfortunates that are never going to get a good deal on their insurance just by virtue of their inexperience.

Meanwhile, even as the market improves overall these desperate younger Brits have found themselves targeted increasingly by shadow brokers – a particularly crafty and cruel subset of fraudsters that pose as legitimate insurance brokers but simply pocket a victim’s money and disappear. The worst part about these bastards is that they’ll not just shake down poor luckless younger Brits but they’ll actually supply their victims with documents that are completely bogus but are designed to trick them into thinking they’ve got valid cover.

Do you know what happens when you’re caught out without valid cover? You’re in deep trouble, that’s what. It doesn’t matter to insurers if you were hoodwinked by one of these ghost brokers – they just see you as someone who was motoring about with invalidated insurance, and that means you’re going to be hard-pressed to find any insurance provider that will offer you actual, real and valid cover for anything less than an arm and a leg. Of course, most insurers will simply refuse to even provide you a price quote. I think it’s unfair but what can we do?

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