Claiming against an uninsured drivers

A car accident is traumatic enough. But what if the other driver has no insurance? Can you claim against an uninsured driver? Here’s everything you need to know.

A car accident is traumatic enough. But what if the other driver has no insurance? Can you claim against an uninsured driver? Here’s everything you need to know.

Daniel Hutson
From the Motor team
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Posted 8 NOVEMBER 2021

The cost of uninsured drivers 

It’s estimated that there are around 1 million uninsured drivers on the UK’s roads. Even if you’re not involved in an accident with someone uninsured, this is an issue that impacts everybody, as it’s one of the reasons drivers have to pay higher car insurance premiums.

How can I tell if I've been hit by an uninsured driver? 

If you have a smartphone, you can use the Motor Insurance Database (MID) to instantly check and confirm the insurance details of the other parties involved. 

Once you’ve moved your car to a safe place, you can use the askMID Roadside service to check if the other car is insured. The service costs £4.50. 

If the other vehicle is on the database, you’ll see the owner’s insurance details, including their policy number, the name of their insurance provider and the claims contact details. You can check if this matches what they’ve given you, making it easier to progress your claim. 

If you can’t find the other driver’s details on the database – and you’ve made sure they’re correct – it’s likely that the driver is uninsured. 

If you don’t have a smartphone, or don’t want to pay £4.50, call your insurance provider. They should also be able to check if the other driver is insured.

What should I do if I’m hit by an uninsured driver?

If your car’s been hit by an uninsured driver, it’s vitally important to gather as much information and evidence as possible after the accident. This includes:

  • the time and date of the accident
  • the other car’s registration number and details
  • the other driver’s name, address and contact details

If you can, take videos and photographs of the scene, as well as any injuries, to back up your claim.

If the other driver isn’t insured, or refuses to give you their details, you must call the police, even if there’s only minor damage. Refusing to give insurance information is as much of a criminal offence as driving uninsured is.

You’ll also need to tell your car insurance provider about the accident. If you don’t, you could invalidate your policy. Most insurance providers have a 24/7 emergency claims line, so you can call them any time of day or night. They’ll also have access to the MID, which tells them if the other driver is insured or not.

Can I claim against an uninsured driver?

If you have fully comprehensive car insurance, you can make a claim through your insurance provider. But if the other driver isn’t insured, your provider won’t be able to recover costs from their insurance provider. This makes the claims process trickier to resolve than a standard claim. 

If you only have third party, or third party fire and theft cover, you won’t be able to make a claim through your insurance provider. However, you might be able to apply for compensation through the MIB. Unfortunately, this is a slow process – claims can take over a year to resolve. 

If the accident is your fault, you’ll be responsible for the cost of repairing the other driver’s car, even if they aren’t insured.

If I’m involved in an accident with an uninsured driver, how much compensation can I expect? 

How much compensation you get, if any, will depend on many factors, such as: 

  • What medical support and care you need
  • Lost earnings
  • Medical expenses

What’s an Uninsured Driver Promise?

Many comprehensive car insurance policies include an Uninsured Driver Promise. This is a guarantee that your no claims discount will be reinstated and your excess reimbursed if you’re involved in an accident with an uninsured driver. Not all insurance providers offer this, so if you’re choosing a policy, it’s worth checking this is included.

What are the penalties for driving without insurance? 

If you were ever tempted to drive without insurance yourself, it’s worth remembering that the penalties for doing so are severe. If you’re caught, you could be looking at: 

  • A £300 fine
  • Your car being seized
  • Prosecution, with the prospect of an unlimited fine and disqualification from driving
  • Six penalty points on your licence

Compare and save

Our price comparison service could be the easiest way to find a policy that suits you. Once you have a list of quotes, you can check which policies offer you the right level of cover to protect against the costs of uninsured driver incidents.

Uninsured drivers are partly responsible for the increase in premium costs. But that doesn’t mean you won’t be able to find a great deal on your car insurance. Compare with us today and see if you can save.

Frequently asked questions

Do I still need to insure my car if I’m not using it?

Some drivers may be accidentally breaking the law by thinking they don’t need to insure their car if they’re not using it. But if your car is on public land, it needs to be insured. If you’re not using it, you can declare it off the road.

What’s an IAL?

An IAL is an Insurance Advisory Letter. If you receive one, it means that your car doesn’t appear on the Motor Insurance Database (MID). This could mean you’re not insured.

Can I sue an uninsured driver?

If you’re the victim of an uninsured or hit-and-run driver, your best bet is to contact the MIB. They’ll tell you what you can claim for and how to go about making a claim.

Can I make a no-win, no-fee claim against an uninsured driver?

Possibly, yes. A number of personal injury solicitors specialise in this kind of claim, so you’d have to contact them and explain your situation.

Can an uninsured driver make a claim against me?

Yes. If the accident is deemed to be your fault, your insurance provider will have to pay out. However, the uninsured driver may find they’re prosecuted if they decide to make a claim.

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