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Last updated: 28 October 2021
If you’ve been convicted of a criminal offence it can be harder to find an affordable quote for van insurance. And it can be difficult whether your offence was related to motoring or not. Here are some steps you can take to reduce the cost of insuring your van.
What is a driving conviction?
A driving conviction is when you’re convicted of a criminal offence on the road. You will be fined by the courts, and your driving record will be endorsed with penalty points.
The number of points and how long they last for depends on how severe your offence was.
Even if your conviction was not related to motoring, you may find it difficult to get van insurance. This is because convicted drivers are statistically more likely to be involved in an accident, making you a higher risk for insurers.
How does a conviction affect van insurance?
If you have criminal convictions on your record it can make getting van insurance very difficult. Any criminal conviction is likely to affect the cost of your van insurance as you are statistically more likely to make a claim.
It’s not only driving convictions. Any minor offence may have an impact on your ability to get van insurance.
If you do find van insurance, you are likely to pay a lot more than someone without any convictions.
Even though it can be harder to find affordable insurance as a convicted driver, you still need insurance to drive your van. Don’t be tempted to lie about any unspent convictions either, as this can invalidate your insurance if you do need to make a claim.
Should I declare a conviction?
When getting a quote for your van insurance it is essential to declare any unspent criminal convictions. Criminal convictions become spent after a certain time. This will depend upon how serious your offence is.
Failure to disclose any unspent criminal convictions can make your policy invalid if you need to claim. You do not need to disclose cautions or final warnings.
If you already have van insurance at the time you commit an offence, you don’t usually need to declare it until your policy is up for renewal. However, some contracts state otherwise! It is essential to check the terms of your insurance or you could risk invalidating your policy.
Are there specialist insurers for convicted drivers?
As a convicted driver you may find it hard to get insurance at all from standard insurance providers, but there are specialist insurers out there to help.
If you’re struggling to get a quote from a better known insurance company, try looking for smaller insurance firms. Some smaller firms specialise in providing cover for drivers with convictions.
Unfortunately, specialist insurers are likely to be more expensive as smaller companies often charge higher premiums. Even though you may pay more it is important that you do insure your van before driving it.
How to save money on van insurance
If you have found van insurance but are struggling to keep the costs low, there are a number of ways to lower your premiums:
- You can choose to pay more voluntary excess as this often lowers your premiums. Make sure that you can afford the excess should you need to make a claim.
- Reducing your estimated mileage lowers your risk of making a claim, so insurers lower your premiums to reflect this.
- Improve your vans security by fitting an alarm and immobiliser, if possible keep it in a locked garage overnight.
- Consider a telematics, or black box policy as good driving is rewarded with lower insurance fees.
- Using a smaller or lightweight van that fits into a lower insurance group will reduce the amount you pay for insurance.
- Reduce your add-ons so that you only cover what you need.
Will a driving course lower insurance costs?
Sometimes, enrolling on a driving course can help lower your van insurance.
If you have previously been banned from driving you may be able to shorten your ban by taking courses. This can also mean you pay a smaller van insurance premium when you do get back on the road.
If you are considering taking a driving course to lower your insurance premium make sure your insurer recognises the course before you sign up. Some courses aren’t recognised, and others won’t lower your insurance enough for it to be worth the cost of the course!
The easiest step you can take tow lower the cost of your insurance is to compare van insurance policies before making a decision.