What is fronting in car insurance?

Car insurance is full of jargon and terminology you might not have heard before. ‘Fronting’ is one term you should be aware of, as many people do it but don’t realise it’s illegal. Read on to find out more.

Published

28 Sep 2018

What is fronting in car insurance?

Fronting is a type of insurance fraud that can happen when an experienced driver takes out a car insurance policy in their name, but then puts a less experienced motorist, who will use the car more often, down as the named driver.

Is fronting illegal?

Yes, but many people who front don’t know it is illegal – they think they are just being savvy with their insurance. But if a young or inexperienced driver owns or drives the car, then the policy should be in their name. At the very least, they should be declared as the main driver.

For example, insurers often see a younger driver who has just passed their test as a higher risk than someone who is an experienced driver. They will also see those who have been involved in accidents in the past, as a potential risk.

Why do people front?

People may front because insuring high-risk or inexperienced drivers can be more expensive than insuring someone who has been driving for years without incident.

So to try and get a cheaper premium, a more experienced driver may take out a car insurance policy on someone else’s behalf. However, this would invalidate their policy if they are found out.

Fronting can include any instance where you provide your insurer with misleading information that could affect the terms of your policy. Another example would be if you tell your insurer your car will be locked safely in a garage at night when actually it will be parked in an area where it is at risk of being broken into.

What happens if someone is caught fronting?

Fronting is usually discovered when a policyholder tries to make a claim. In this instance, the insurer may refuse to pay for any damages. If a third party was involved, the insurance company must cover the cost of repairs, but they might try and get the money back from the policyholder. In some situations, cases of fronting can end up in court and policyholders may be charged with fraud.

Sometimes, the insurance company may simply either cancel the policy or refuse to continue with a claim until the correct premium is paid. It’s worth remembering that in either situation, the driver could find themselves in a position where they are accused of driving without insurance, which is illegal. This could lead to a fine, points on their licence and ultimately, more expensive insurance premiums in future.

Honesty is the best policy

When it comes to getting new insurance, policyholders must declare whether they’ve had a previous policy cancelled or been refused cover in the past – both can result in increased insurance costs.

It’s important to be as honest as possible about everything you’re asked. This helps the insurance company to make an informed decision on how much you will pay for cover, and means you aren’t at risk of committing fraud. Stay on the right side of the law and you can enjoy driving in your newly-insured vehicle for years to come.

Important information

The content on this page aims to offer an informative introduction to the subject matter but does not constitute expert financial advice specific to your own situation. All facts and figures were correct at time of publication and were compiled using a range of sources.

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