Motor Insurance Crisis
With the massive hikes in Motor Insurance in recent times there is a lot of public concern about where these Insurance increases are going to stop. Added to the public outcry on the huge increases in Insurance, the discussion within Government is focused on the need to address fraud and the random nature of personal injury court awards as a means of reducing premiums.
The reality is 20% of personal injuries claims are dealt with by the Personal Injuries Board and approximately 70% of claims result insurers agreeing to out of court settlements.
It would seem that Insurance Companies are likely awarding higher payouts than what the Personal Injuries Board have suggested as a direct result of avoidance of court. This court avoidance and the resulting higher payouts have the knock on effect of further undermining the validity of the Personal Injuries Board and its effectiveness.
There are some reforms which could be implemented such as updating the book of quantum as well as improving the technology provided by the Gardaí to tackle uninsured drivers and also establishment of a shared information database between all insurers which could reduce fraud
Among the reforms which the AA would like to see introduced are the updating of the Book of Quantum, improvements in the technology provided to Gardaí to tackle uninsured drivers, and the establishment of a shared information database between insurers to reduce fraud which at the moment is accounting for an increase of approximately €50 to each premium in Ireland.
A lot of these factors lead to a catch 22 situation. Increases in motor insurance costs are actually increasing the number uninsured drivers on Irish roads, which in turn increases the risk and therefore has the effect of increasing premiums. Along with this extra risk factor, the Gardaí lack the necessary technology to tackle the increasing issue of uninsured drivers on our roads.