The ‘little’ lies that could leave you without car insurance

Thursday, 2nd April 2020, 9:00 am
Updated Thursday, 2nd April 2020, 9:01 am

One in 10 UK drivers has lied to their insurer about their annual mileage, while one in 12 has told a parking porky in a bid to cut their premiums.

Where they live, their job title and what they use the car for are among the other common half truths told by drivers in an effort to reduce their annual insurance bill.

But misleading an insurer over even apparently small matters like these can invalidate a policy, leaving drivers uninsured.

A new study into how drivers try to deceive their insurers found that 10 per cent of motorists weren’t honest about their annual mileage. While insurers will allow a little leeway, regularly understating your mileage by larger amounts to cut your costs isn’t acceptable and could see your insurer cancel your policy.

Insurers can also cancel your policy or reject a claim if you’re found to have lied about where you keep a car. Around eight per cent of those questioned said they had lied about this, stating their car was kept in a garage or on a driveway when this wasn’t the case.

Around six per cent admitted to bending the truth about their job title to get a favourable rate and a similar proportion lied about where they live. Five per cent also failed to tell their insurer that they used the car for business purposes.

Mark Tongue, director of Select Car Leasing which carried out the study, said: “This study shows the many and varied lengths some drivers go to to save money on their insurance premiums.

“Their antics may not be entirely new, but they could cost motorists dear if they are found out.

“While premiums can appear high, anyone found to be lying to their insurance firm faces swift and potentially expensive comeback.

“It is entirely likely they may find their policy invalidated and that they are left to cover the cost of any accident or repairs themselves.”

The research, carried out by OnePoll, discovered that women are more honest than men - 77 per cent haven’t lied, compared with 73 per cent of men - and Londoners are the most likely to lie, with 58 per cent admitted to misleading their insurer about at least one thing.

The study also found that those in the highest professional standing – including chief executives, civil servants and surgeons – were most likely to be economical with the truth, with ore than half (55 per cent) in this ‘social standing’ bracket admitted to lying.

This was in contrast to less than seven per cent of drivers at the other end of the scale – including casual labourers, students, pensioners and the unemployed.