Can I Get Car Insurance With 5 Penalty Points?
Caeva O'Callaghan | May 20th, 2021
So you’ve been found guilty of a driving misdemeanor, and have been awarded points on your license. Will car insurers still cover you?
Yes. Most companies will give you a quote if you have 6 penalty points or fewer. However, the amount of penalty points you have may affect how much you pay.
If you have a driving conviction or points on your license it’s important to be upfront and honest at every stage. Neither your broker or your insurance provider will judge you, so don’t be afraid to ask for help if you need it.
In this article, we’ll answer these questions:
- What are penalty points?
- How do I get car insurance after I get points on my licence?
- Do penalty points expire?
Most companies will accept three points without increasing your premiums, or only increasing them a little. However when you get six points or more, it can be more difficult to obtain a quote. If this is you, give us a call and our experts will help you out.
What are penalty points?
Penalty points are awarded onto your driving licence when you’ve been caught doing something wrong while behind the wheel. Maybe you did a U-turn in the wrong place, went over the speed limit, or something more serious.
Having a penalty point on your licence is a formal reprimand issued by the Gardai. Sometimes, you can avoid having points on your licence by paying a fixed fine within 28 or 56 days.
The penalty points system was introduced in Ireland in 2002, with the aim of improving driver behaviour and reducing death and serious injuries on Irish roads. But in 2014 the legislation was changed to be a bit more strict, adding new offences and stricter penalties for others.
For example, holding a mobile phone while driving, not wearing a seatbelt, and speeding offences were all raised from two to three penalty points.
How do I get car insurance after I get points on my licence?
In most cases, having penalty points will affect your premium. Insurance companies calculate your premium based partly on the nature and number of your offences. If they’re serious or many, you’ll be paying more.
If you happen to get penalty points, it’s important to notify your car insurance provider. Honesty is the best policy, especially when dealing with insurance companies! If you wilfully lie about your driving record, future claims could be unsuccessful, leaving you in worse trouble than before.
And of course, if you’ve gained penalty points for driving without insurance in the first place, any provider will think twice about insuring you. Along with a fixed penalty, you can get six points on your licence for driving uninsured. Not only that, but the Gardaí have the power to seize, and in some cases, destroy your car.
If you think driving without insurance will be cheaper than a premium with a couple of penalty points, you’re wrong – you could end up severely out of pocket!
Do penalty points expire?
Penalty points remain on your driving record for three years. However, if your licence expires during this time this time limit will freeze and resume whenever you renew your licence.
If you get 12 penalty points within a three-year period, you’re automatically disqualified from driving for six months. Learner drivers have a lower threshold of seven penalty points. Once you have a driving ban, you have to surrender your licence to the National Drivers Licence Service within 10 days. After your six-month ban ends, the points that led to the disqualification will be removed.
If you were disqualified from driving for more than two years, you will have lost your no-claims bonus. This means you’ll have to start all over again, and you will find yourself paying more.
A number of insurance companies are still happy to provide quotes to convicted drivers, and there are others who offer specialist insurance. As a broker, we can get quotes on your behalf from these insurers and find the best quote for you.
Talk to our experts about any car insurance questions
If you are unsure about anything to do with penalty points or your car insurance, pick up the phone and talk to our team today. They will walk you through all the key points and search the market for the right insurance policy for you.