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What Does Brexit Mean for Motor Insurance? - Malcolm Johnson, BL Claims Solicitors

24/10/16. Brexit means legal changes – and one area of substantial change will be the rights of injured motorists against the Motor Insurers Bureau.

The European Union has issued six Motor Insurance Directives since 1972. The effect of these Directives is to harmonise the minimum standards for motor insurance across Europe. This means that a motorist from the UK can drive across the European Union knowing that his insurance will be legal in all the Member States. Motorists are advised to "up" their insurance when they drive abroad, but the point is that everyone has the same minimum rights.

Secondly the European Directives have, over the years dramatically improved the rights of people hit by uninsured and untraced drivers. The present scheme in this country for compensating these people consists of a set of Agreements between the insurance industry and the UK government. Over the years, challenges to those Agreements in our courts and the European Court of Justice have meant that victims' rights have been enhanced.

For instance, if you were a child victim of an untraced driver, you had to bring your claim within three years of the accident regardless of the fact that if you were suing a traced driver, limitation only began to run against you from your 18th birthday. That changed after the Court of Appeal decision in Byrne (A Minor) v The Motor Insurers Bureau and the Secretary Of State for Transport [2008] EWCA Civ 574...

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