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Over one million motorists involved in smashes that weren’t their fault should be protected from resulting insurance premium hikes, Labour has said today.

Currently, drivers can get a nasty shock when they renew their insurance policy after a not-at-fault accident such as being driven into from behind, even if the other driver has admitted full liability and met the full costs of repair.

Some insurers say they disregard not-at-fault accidents already, but many insurance companies currently use all reported incidents to determine premiums for drivers.

With the average cost of a comprehensive policy now over £1,500, up nearly £50 in the past twelve months, motorists need greater confidence that they will not be penalised for accidents that are not their fault.

John Woodcock MP, Labour's Shadow Transport Minister, speaking at an insurance conference today, will say that Labour’s policy review will explore whether the Government should ban insurance companies from considering not-at-fault accidents when setting premiums.

John Woodcock, said:

"Too many motorists whose vehicles get pranged by the reckless driving of others find their insurance premiums rocket as a result – that can’t be fair.

"Hard-pressed responsible drivers deserve a better deal, so Labour will explore the likely effect of banning insurance companies from assessing not-at-fault accidents when setting premiums."

There were 4.5 million claims submitted to motor insurers last year and it is estimated that more than half of those resulted from a smash where only one car was at fault. That would leave well over a million blameless crash victims last year whose not-at-fault claims could result in their premiums being raised.

Labour’s policy review will explore the likely effect on fraudulent claims of any move to ban not-at-fault premium rises, and what extra enforcement measures could be effective in tackling insurance cheats.

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