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Suffolk young driver’s insurance cap call debated by MPs - should premiums be limited to £1,200?

PUBLISHED: 19:37 20 March 2017 | UPDATED: 11:01 21 March 2017

Rhys Parker, 19 and Julia Radziejewfka, 18. Picture: courtesy of Rhys Parker

Rhys Parker, 19 and Julia Radziejewfka, 18. Picture: courtesy of Rhys Parker

Rhys Parker

Car insurance premiums would go up for everyone if a Lowestoft teenager’s plea for a £1,200 cap for young people went ahead, insurance giant Aviva has claimed.

The warning came as MPs spent more than two hours debating 19-year-old Rhys Parker’s parliamentary petition which called for a cap on the amount 18 to 25-year-old should pay to insure their vehicles.

The Suffolk young driver, from London Road, launched a parliament petition calling for the cap after he was given a quote of £2,500 for his first year of driving. After gaining support from 185,000 people across the UK, it was debated by MPs this evening.

Mr Parker eventually managed to get basic insurance for £1,400, but said he wanted to raise the issue for other young drivers.

He said he and his girlfriend Julia Radziejewfka, who helped with the campaign, were shocked at how many people backed the petition which was widely shared on the social media website Facebook.

He said that people living in places like Lowestoft were reliant on their cars, where a journey could involve numerous buses.

“I need my car to get around,” he said.

But Conservative MP Steve Double who was leading the debate said that capping insurance premiums for young drivers would result in other motorists being unfairly hit in the wallet. He said the cause of high premiums - higher accident rates among younger drivers - needed to be addressed instead by improving the driving test system.

But Mr Parker said he thought some elderly drivers could be just as scary as young people and claimed young drivers “sitting in cars parks revving their engines” were a small minority affecting the premiums of a lot of other.

Responding to the debate transport minister Andrew Jones said he was sympathetic to the high insurance premiums and that the government realised the cost of car insurance was important for young people.

E-petition debates are for discussion only, so MPs will not have the power to introduce any limit on premiums.

Norwich-based Aviva said its price depended on individual risk and some young drivers would be paying more than £1,200, while some might pay less.

A spokesman said statistics showed that young drivers were much more at risk on our roads.

“The cost implication of serious and fatal crashes is huge with pay outs potentially costing millions of pounds. Therefore it’s imperative that insurers can accurately price for risk.”

The spokesman said their Aviva Drive app - which rates cornering, braking and accelerating over 200 miles - could reduce premiums. “Premiums will increase for all other drivers to reflect the fact young drivers are not fully contributing to the pot for the risks they present.”

15 comments

  • A company should be formed and called TPO (Third Party Only) this would keep the costs down as the car would only be insured for third party costs. So is a driver wraps their car round a tree they get no pay out whatsoever apart from passenger injuries, if any

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    thundercat

    Thursday, March 23, 2017

  • Spot on SMH. Actuaries determine the probability of risk which them determines the appropriate premium. Capping premiums is nonsense which would result in other drivers paying more or the younger or higher risk groups not being able to insure a vehicle. The consequence of that is possibly more uninsured drivers on the road.

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    andy

    Tuesday, March 21, 2017

  • Insurance companies base their rates on statistics and a long history of claims. They know that certain groups tend to have more personal injury cases, which cost a lot more that scrapes in a car park. Unfortunately you cannot predict risk for an individual, so you assume that they form part of a similar group. The premiums then come down with claim-free years. If someone has never driven before, how do you know what their risk profile is, apart from the years of statistics on similar people with similar vehicles in similar areas? I know every person is an individual, and there are very careful drivers out there, but the insurance companies don't know them as individuals, so have to make an assumption. Getting a "black box" (GPS recorder) fitted can often bring down premiums rapidly.

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    So_Many_Haters!

    Tuesday, March 21, 2017

  • I often read that uninsured drivers of this age when prosecuted are fined a couple of hundred pounds. It's not surprising then , if premiums are 2 - 3 thousand pounds , & fines 2 - 3 hundred that many don't bother with insurance!

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    Dick Turnip

    Tuesday, March 21, 2017

  • cyril, i agree, compulsory black boxes for all drivers under 25yrs, limit to small low powered cars, an extended test before being allowed to drive anything more powerful, a bit like motorcycle laws. all 3 of my children started driving in a small van, just 2 seats so they could not load it full of their mates, all 3 are very good drivers who i have always been able to sit next to in the passenger seat with no problems or fears.

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    ted

    Tuesday, March 21, 2017

  • Surely the government has all the necessary statistics to make a judgment as to whether the young are being overcharged? One possible solution might be a large deposit at the outset which can be gradually used against in future payments. That way the safer youngsters will not be penalised.

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    Green Ink from Tunbridge Wells

    Tuesday, March 21, 2017

  • Sudders, you are spot on except that it's not boarderline fraud, it is fraud. If you took most badly damaged cars apart you would find that lots of parts that were paid for by insurance companies had not been replaced at all! My mate works for one large accident repair centre and he says that over charging and billing for parts that are not required is rife and they all do it!

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    baguio

    Tuesday, March 21, 2017

  • If motor insurance was just that then things would be much more straight forward. So much of what is paid out these days relates to the 'compensation culture' that has become widespread. I recall an accident [thankfully not too serious] I had in 1992 all the payout that I got related to replacing the damaged vehicle, nothing else not even the £20 fee levied for the ambulance taking me to the hospital!

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    TREBOR60

    Tuesday, March 21, 2017

  • If there was a cap on insurance premiums for young drivers then the insurance companies would just refuse to quote. If premiums are to go down then clearly the risk has to be reduced. Tamper-proof black boxes freely accessible by the police maybe? I'm sure that would be really popular ;)

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    Cyril the Canary

    Monday, March 20, 2017

  • equalibrium, you raise a perfectly valid solution. Sadly the more insurance rates rise then so I expect so will the number of non insured drivers.... young and old! As for Peter Watson I can only infer that is how he was when younger. Thankfully my own two lads had a lot more regard for care and safety when driving than he seems to credit youngsters with. Tar and brush spring to mind.

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    Responsible parent

    Monday, March 20, 2017

  • Young males shouldn't be allowed to drive until their testosterone starts to tail off,usually around 25,when they make start to get their brain in gear.

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    Peter Watson

    Monday, March 20, 2017

  • The issues with young people, specifically males. Is that they are naturally risk averse, they don't think ahead and will take risks. This happens when driving, not all young drivers but many. This is what causes accidents in young men, exceed speed, poor judgement and not thinking ahead. Hence the insurance companies hit them hard due to the risk they pose. There should be limits on what car they can drive.... E.G.: 17-20 nothing over a 1.0 litre engine, 20 - 23 nothing over a 1.6 litre engine. Only at 25 can you drive anything over a 2.0 litre engine.

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    equalibrium

    Monday, March 20, 2017

  • What should be happening is that insurers be obliged to accurately predict risk.We know from the office of national statistics and other sources that males between 17 and 25 are more likely to have accidents, that elderly people are not but are more likely to die as a result but that they may have more slow speed scrapes eg in supermarket car parks. The really nasty accident s are often caused by middle aged men but not in sufficient numbers to skew their premiums. We also know that EU regs forced up premiums for women. By the time my daughter a graduate professional was 24 she had driven thousands of miles without a scratch but her premiums were only affordable because of her ncb and by choosing a low group car. Blanket penalising the young and the old is wrong. I have driven hundreds of thousands of miles on all manner of roads with no claims and no points. Will I be a bigger risk than someone the same age who has never driven more than a few miles at a time and has bought an automatic Noddy car? Why should our premium s go up because we live in the same postcode as a few people who claim for minor scrapes? Or who have had their cars pinched on holiday? The whole industry is bent as nine bob notes.

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    FlintinChalk

    Monday, March 20, 2017

  • What would reduce premiums is to crack down on the vastly overpriced estimates garages give for repairs, it's borderline fraud.

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    Sudders

    Monday, March 20, 2017

  • So the least safe drivers would like the rest of us to subsidize them.Thank you but no thanks I already subsidize there cheap loans from my non existent interest rates.

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    David Gom

    Monday, March 20, 2017

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