UK drivers will need insurance Green Card on the continent if there’s a no-deal Brexit

By Ryan Hirons
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UK drivers will need insurance Green Card on the continent if there’s a no-deal Brexit

The Department for Transport is warning of car insurance implications abroad if UK leaves EU without deal being struck

UK motorists will have to carry an insurance Green Card when driving on the continent should a no-deal Brexit happen, the government has warned.

The card proves that a driver has the minimum insurance cover needed in the relevant country, but the Green Card-free circulation area – which covers the EU plus Andorra, Serbia and Switzerland – means that UK drivers only need a passport and driving licence when crossing any borders within the zone.

If no agreement is made for the UK to remain a part of the Green Card-free zone following its separation from the EU in 2019, motorists will need to get a card before travelling abroad.

Drivers can request one from their insurer for free. However, the Department for Transport has warned that insurers could offset the costs of issuing a larger quantity of the certificates with “a small increase to their administration fees”.

Commercial operators with fleet insurance have also been advised to ensure that each vehicle driven abroad has a separate card.

Any British motorist entering an EU country without a Green Card would have to buy a policy from an insurer within the country they were travelling through or risk prosecution.

The same restrictions will also apply for motorists entering the UK from the EU.

On top of a Green Card, the government has also warned that motorists may need to carry an international driving permit when using a car in the EU.

Janet Connor, director of insurance for motoring services firm the AA, said: “Seven million drivers go to continental Europe for business or pleasure every year. The need for an insurance Green Card, which at present is free of charge, could bring a greater administrative burden and costs on insurers.

“This extra administration is an inconvenience for drivers, but for industry and particularly small businesses it potentially adds a further layer of bureaucratic difficulty to cross-border trading.

“From what was an easy and simple process of driving on to the continent, driving your own car there could become a real pain. Overall, a no-deal Brexit would mean more hassle than the current arrangements, so we hope a deal can be struck to avoid this potential red tape.”