Guide to Driving Without Insurance

The Offence

It is an offence to either use a motor vehicle on a road or other public place without valid insurance or let someone else use your vehicle with no insurance. You would be guilty even if you were not aware that an offence was committed, so you are under a positive duty to check that there is insurance in place.

A motor vehicle does not have to be driven to be used; the term 'using' includes a parked or stationary vehicle on a public road, for example during repair.

No offence is committed where the Insurance Company has provided cover but not yet issued the policy.

Do I need an NIP (Notice of Intended Prosecution) for driving with no insurance?

No, there is no requirement for an NIP for driving without insurance.

Punishment

Fine up to £5000, 6-8 penalty points and discretionary disqualification from driving. If there are aggravating features the Court may also impose a community penalty, such as a community rehabilitation order or curfew order.

Defences

A prosecution must be brought within 6 months from the date on which the offence first came to the knowledge of the police or 3 years from the offence, whichever is shorter.

It is up to the defendant to prove their innocence, either by producing evidence of insurance or arguing that the vehicle was neither in their possession nor used. In limited circumstances punishment can be avoided by relying on special reasons for using the vehicle, even if guilty of the offence.

In order to obtain an acquittal or receive reduced punishment you must be able to identify the relevant facts, be knowledgeable on the law and be able to expertly put evidence to the Court. We recommend that you call us for specialist legal advice.

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