Private Number Plates and Insurance

private number plate and insurance

Can a Private Number Plate Affect Insurance Costs

Buying a private or personalised registration number plate can add that little bit of extra x-factor to your vehicle. You may be bored with a standard number plate and feel a more personalised plate would reflect your car better. You may want a private registration which fits the brand of your business, your first marketing impact tool whenever you travel. However, if you are contemplating changing to a private registration number plate you need to take any potential insurance implications in to consideration.

Just as you will need to inform the DVLA of your new private registration number, you also need to let your insurers know too. If you fail to do this you could find yourself in a nightmare scenario of trying to prove the vehicle is indeed insured if it is stolen or involved in an accident. In theory most insurers will not view a change to a private registration as a modification to the vehicle and therefore you should not see any change in car insurance costs. In theory! However, you should always check with your insurers, as each company will operate in a different fashion and the spectre of hidden costs is never far away.

Will I Have To Pay More For My Car Insurance?

In general, as a change of registration number is not seen as a modification, just as a means of identification, you would expect your car insurance not to be affected. Yet this is certainly not set in stone and policy can differ across the industry, so you should discuss your change of number with your insurers to avoid any nasty surprises. It is possible some insurers may feel a personalised number plate increases the attractiveness of the vehicle to thieves and reflect this in the premium. On the other side of this particular coin, other companies may view the personalised number as less attractive to thieves as the plate is more distinctive and possibly easier to track. This is why consulting with your insurers is important in order to discuss their company’s approach.

There can be a similar discrepancy between different insurance companies when it comes to the matter of the admin of the change of registration number. Although you can not imagine changing one line of data on a computer system can take too long, some companies may levy an admin fee for their troubles. However, with around £11 million spent in a year on private registration numbers as recently as 2017 they may argue this amounts to a lot of extra admin.

Check Your Existing Policy

Like most things the cost of changing to a private registration number can vary quite dramatically, with some people forking out thousands of pounds to register their ideal number plate. However, as well as considering whether changing your vehicle registration might increase your insurance costs, it is also worthwhile considering the potential impact of the personalised number plate if the vehicle is written off or stolen. In both these scenarios the insurance company can take over ownership of the vehicle and the registration plate when a claim is made for the cost of the vehicle.

Few policies cover the loss of a personalised plate and those which do may vary in the amount covered. However, informing the insurer as soon as you change to a private registration number can help facilitate getting your personalised number back in the event of the vehicle being written off or stolen. As number plates are assigned to a vehicle and not a person they can be lost when the vehicle is stolen or has to be scrapped. The insurers can be asked to supply a letter of non-interest in the licence plate to the DVLA to allow you to reclaim the registration. You may actually want to consider obtaining a letter of non-interest from the insurers at the time you initially let them know of your newly purchased private registration as a precaution against any future issues.

Private registrations are popular and straightforward to do. For whatever reason you change your registration or wherever you purchase it you will immediately need to inform the DVLA. You should also inform your insurers at the same time. Although changing to a private registration should not mean increased insurance costs, every insurance company operates differently. Even before you buy your new number plate you may want to discuss this with your insurers to ensure you know exactly what the potential implications are for your car insurance premiums and the process of retaining your registration in the event of an incident involving your vehicle. It is always best to know in advance and avoid any unnecessary hidden fees and hassles.