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Irish parents routinely lie about being a car's main driver to lower their children's premiums

Over 13% of parents have ‘fronted’ for their children’s insurance according to a new survey.

shutterstock_508169191 Shutterstock / Andrey Yurlov Shutterstock / Andrey Yurlov / Andrey Yurlov

A LARGE NUMBER of Irish parents have admitted to claiming to being the main driver of their child’s car in order to reduce their insurance premium, a practice known as ‘fronting’.

The information is contained in a new AA survey which says that 13% of parents asked had admitted to either currently or at some time in the past fronting for their children’s insurance.

3,165 responses were sought by the AA regarding the issue earlier this month.

Of those 4.6% admitted that they were currently engaging in the practice. A further 9% admitted that they had done so in the past.
17.6% said they would be tempted to do so, with the remaining 68.8% saying they would never be tempted.

Gaining driving experience on a parent’s insurance policy is a well-trodden path towards gaining their licence for Irish children.

If detected however, insurance fronting could result in a company refusing to pay out on a claim.

Parents aged between 46 and 55 were the most likely to have either named themselves as the main driver of a child’s car, or to have considered doing so.

“The cost of driving and particularly learning to drive has always been front-loaded, in that purchasing a car and getting it insured is most expensive in your first few years behind the wheel before tapering off over time,” said the AA’s director of consumer affairs Conor Faughnan.

“While it may be tempting to resort to lying to your insurer to reduce your premiums, doing so is never worth the risk,” he added.

What might save you a small amount up front could leave you facing a much larger bill in the event of an accident should the insurer refuse to pay out.

Fronting can be seen as a consequence of the stretched insurance market in Ireland at present, with becoming insured, let alone buying a car, a financial impossibility for many young people here.

Between 2015 and 2016, more than a third of Irish drivers saw their insurance rise by up to 50%, with people consequently driving with reduced levels of insurance in an attempt to manage costs.

The industry here has previously defended itself saying that higher claim payouts in recent years have necessitated premium hikes in order to balance the books.

In January, it was recommended by a government working group that insurers should be made to explain to drivers why their motor premiums have increased.

Read: Rush hour warning to drivers as truck catches fire on Naas Road

Read: What on earth is going on with motor insurance premiums in Ireland?

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