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31 August 2021

Covid-19 and car insurance

What do Covid-19 alert level restrictions mean for your motor vehicle insurance policies? Here are some answers to our most frequently asked questions about how the current situation impacts car and other vehicle insurance.

Driver’s licence expiry

If your licence expires and can’t be renewed on time due to restrictions, claims will not be declined as long as you previously held the correct level or class of licence required for the vehicle.  An expired driver’s licence should be renewed as soon as possible once government restrictions have eased.

Warrant of Fitness (WOF) expiry

If a claim was caused by a roadworthiness issue and the WOF expired during or immediately prior to lockdown, insurers generally won’t look to decline for failing the roadworthiness condition, as long as the accident was not related to a known material roadworthiness condition.

A new WOF must be obtained as soon as possible once alert level restrictions have eased to ensure cover remains in place.

Changes to vehicle use

If a private vehicle needs to be used for essential business purposes e.g. because a business vehicle is damaged, can’t be driven and is unable to be repaired during lockdown; or you need to use your private vehicle for deliveries for your own or your employer's business, please contact your broker who will ask the vehicle insurer to approve the change of use. 

As soon as alert level restrictions ease, insurers will no longer consider covering the temporary business use of a private vehicle.  

Please contact your broker as a commercial motor vehicle policy will provide the correct cover. 

Vehicle registration renewals

Most vehicle registration renewals are done online, however a small amount of people still rely on NZTA Agency offices being open to process renewals.

If a claim occurs, insurers will see if there are legitimate reasons why the vehicle registration has expired. (These reasons might include: no internet access; no ability to access NZTA Agency offices due to alert level closures or travel restrictions).

However if the vehicle has been unregistered, or if has not had a warrant of fitness for some time, it may be viewed as ‘un-roadworthy’ and cover potentially excluded under the motor vehicle policy. Generally however, insurers will always consider the relevance of an expired vehicle registration (or warrant of fitness) where the vehicle is stolen or hit while it is parked.

We’re here to help

One of our responsibilities as a broker is to ensure you have all the information you need to make informed decisions about the risks you face. With the effects of Covid-19 being felt in a number of ways by our clients across the country, we wanted to share some proactive advice to help you protect what’s important during this difficult and unprecedented time.

If you have any questions, or if you would like to speak to us about your insurance please contact us.

Personal insurance      Client Advisory     

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