Victims of uninsured and untraced drivers
There is an agreement in force between the Government of Jersey and the Motor Insurers’ Bureau regarding the payment of compensation to victims of uninsured drivers.
The Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB)
The MIB is run and funded by all insurance providers that issue compulsory vehicle insurance policies in the United Kingdom. The MIB gives compensation to the victims of uninsured and untraced drivers. The MIB will only give compensation if the victim cannot get compensation from any other source.
If the driver of the other vehicle was uninsured and you have comprehensive insurance, you have the choice of whether to claim on your own insurance policy or not. If you claim on your own policy, repairs can usually be carried out quicker as your policy provider is not concerned about who caused the accident.
If you don’t have comprehensive insurance, you should find out whether there was an insurance policy covering the other vehicle at the time of the accident. You can do this by contacting the Motor Insurance Database, either through your own insurance provider or directly for a fee.
You can get information from The Motor Insurance Database by calling The Motor Insurers’ Information Centre
Tel: +44 845 165 2800
If there was an insurance policy, your claim for compensation for personal injury or damages to your vehicle or property must be passed to that insurance provider. This applies even if the insurance policy appears to have not been in force at the time of the accident. Some examples of that might be because the policy has been declared void or the other vehicle was being driven while stolen and the driver has been identified. The insurance provider has a duty to meet claims in these circumstances.
If the insurance provider refuses to meet the claim, you can make a claim to the MIB.
You should complete the MIB claim form and provide any supporting evidence such as witness reports, details of police involvement, repair estimates and the name and address of the uninsured driver. Details should be included of what contact, if any, has been made with the uninsured driver and any information about their insurance position.
The claim form should be returned within three weeks.
The MIB will try to contact the uninsured driver and find out if they were insured and also satisfy itself that the driver was the correct person. If the MIB contacts the driver and they were uninsured, it will ask them to sign a form allowing the MIB to act on your behalf. The form makes it clear that the uninsured driver is agreeing to pay back the MIB for any damages it pays out.
If the MIB is unable to contact the uninsured driver or if the driver refuses to sign the form, the MIB will normally ask you to assign your right of action against the uninsured driver to it. The MIB can then settle your claim without taking legal action, but this will still allow it to recover any damages it pays out. You have to help the MIB in any action they take to get the money back.
If the MIB is not happy that the uninsured driver has been correctly identified, it may ask you to make your claim under the rules for untraced drivers. On the other hand, the MIB may tell you to take legal action against the person you believe to be the uninsured driver.
If you do take the uninsured driver to court and get a judgement that is not paid within seven days, the MIB must pay the amount awarded by the court to you.
If you are claiming for damage to property through the MIB, the MIB will not cover the first £300 of damage to the property. You will have to recover this from the uninsured driver.
If you were driving without insurance and are injured in an accident, you may be able to get compensation for personal injuries from the MIB provided the accident was caused by another uninsured driver. You can’t use the MIB to get compensation for damage to the vehicle or other property.
If you are a passenger who is injured in an accident where the driver was uninsured and you knew or should have known, that the driver was uninsured, you can’t claim compensation from the MIB.
If the driver of the vehicle can’t be traced, you may be able to claim compensation for personal injuries or death through the MIB. A claim must be made within three years of the accident. You may also be able to claim for the damaged property if the vehicle causing the damage can be identified and the driver cannot be traced. The MIB has a standard application form that must be used. A condition of applying is that the accident must be reported to the police within 14 days (five days for a property claim) or as soon as is reasonably practicable. Property claims are subject to a £300 excess and must be made within nine months of the accident. You must co-operate with any police and MIB investigation.
The MIB will investigate and if it decides that a claim would have been successful against the untraced driver, it will pay compensation.
Appealing against a MIB decision
If you are not satisfied with the MIB’s decision, you can appeal to an independent arbitrator appointed by the Department of Transport. You must tell the MIB that you intend to appeal within six weeks of receiving the MIB’s decision. The arbitrator’s decision is binding on both you and the MIB.
Contacting the MIB
The Motor Insurers’ Bureau’s address is:
The Motor Insurers’ Bureau
Linford Wood House
6-12 Capital Drive
The full agreement between MIB and the States of Jersey can be found at www.mib.org.uk/media/166944/2000-jersey-uninsured-drivers-agreement.pdf.