Helpdesk: Why does it cost more to have only me as the named driver?

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Q: My car insurance is arranged by our financial adviser and has always seemed quite competitive.

This year they provided a quote for comprehensive cover with Chaucer Insurance at an annual cost of £153.56. The cover for the previous year had been with Ageas at £158.69.

“I paid the full amount and some days later had a phone call from the advisers saying that Chaucer had looked into my husband’s insurance claims in respect of his own car and required me to pay a further £44.13. Since my husband, although he has always been a named driver on my car’s policy, does not in fact ever drive my car, I asked them to take his name off the policy. I was then advised that I would have to pay much more – approximately £70 – if that happened. Reluctantly, I paid the additional amount of £44.13.

“I do understand that recent claims by my husband on his own car cover would result in him being regarded as a higher risk but I do not understand why it would cost more for my car to only have me as the named driver. I have a long- standing no claims record.

MA, Stirling

A: Chaucer Insurance wrote to the customer’s insurance broker, Calcluth & Sangster, on 1 March, 2013 advising that following a check with the Claims and Underwriting Exchange database, they had been made aware of a claim for the named driver, her husband, which had not been disclosed on the policy. Calcluth & Sangster added this claim on to the policy and an additional premium was generated.

“Before paying this additional premium, Mrs Anderson requested that her husband was removed from the policy but this created a larger additional premium.

“Market results generally show that risks with only one driver perform significantly worse than risks with a combination of the insured and spouse driving.”

• If you have a consumer issue contact Jane Bradley on 0131 620 8432 or e-mail jane.bradley@scotsman.com.