car-insuranceI’m 50 years of age and have been driving for almost 30 years. In 2013, I was convicted of drink driving and banned for 14 months. I paid my fine and served my ban.

At the end of the ban I got insurance from GoSkippy for £600 a year. This was far and away the cheapest around and I couldn’t believe my luck. At the time, I was working from home and mentioned this to the guy on the phone. As a result they didn’t insure me to drive to work which was something that I was completely unaware of at the time. Several months later, I got a job which was office based and enjoyed 16 months of hassle free driving, paying my insurance on time every month.

In June, I had an accident on my way to work (my fault) which resulted in a claim being made by the other driver. On receipt of the claim, my insurers contacted me to get my version of events and I told them that it had happened whilst driving to work. Big mistake. Apparently, I wasn’t insured to drive to work! I was guilty of an oversight, an innocent oversight but these sharks, who had happily taken over £1000 from me in the previous 18 months, latched on to that as an excuse not to honour a £200 claim.

Last week they sent me a letter telling me that they were cancelling my insurance. I had 3 days to find a new insurer. I began contacting every ‘convicted driver’ insurance company I could find on google (well the first three pages anyway). After filling in about a dozen quote forms and making about 30 phone calls, I couldn’t find anyone willing to insure me, not a single one. On the second day, I started again and eventually got a quote…£6,000 per year!!

Things were getting serious. I had one day to get insurance or it was goodbye car, job and home, all because of a scratch on a wheel arch.

I don’t know how many times I explained all this to the many insurance companies I called, but it didn’t matter, not interested. At this point, I had a choice to make: give up my car, my job and probably lose my home (I live in a depressed coastal town where jobs are hard to find), or just drive to work without insurance. The system seemed to have turned me into a criminal so hell why not be one?

Anyway it was game over for me, my whole life flashed before my eyes but not like you hear about in crashes or accidents, but rather a slow motion crash, a brick wall heading towards me that would end my life as I knew it in 24 hours. I’ve always worked but now it seemed I would be denied that and so with a heavy heart I was about to turn off the computer and give up, when I received an email from Broker2U, with whom I’d filled in a quote form earlier in the day saying to contact them about insurance. They were one of the brokers on Unlock’s list. I called them instantly and explained the whole situation. They told me they could get me insurance for a lot less than £6,000 but it wouldn’t be that day as it was already 5pm. It was a worrisome night and I was sceptical but I thought they were my last and only hope.

True to their word, they called me the following day at 10am to tell me they had got me insurance for £1700. I couldn’t believe it. Where everybody else I’d spoken to had failed, and many had tried to get underwriters to insure me in the previous 3 days, they had succeeded in a couple of hours. You can probably imagine how relieved I was. I can’t tell you how grateful I am to them. I glad to have found a small caring company that went out of their way to help me.

 

By Terry (name changed to protect identity)

 

 

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