In 2012 it was predicted women in Ireland would be hit by a 25% increase in their car insurance premiums last year as a result of an EU court ruling.
This week, Quoteme.ie conducted a detailed survey on almost 2000 motor insurance premiums to find out what impact the new ruling had on customer’s pockets. The results found that 57% of the motor premiums examined had increased in price over the course of the year.
And as predicted, women were hit hardest by the directive with an average increase of 11.7% on the price of their premiums. The price of men’s premiums rose by just 2.2% showing a significantly smaller price growth.
Caeva O Callaghan, the managing director of Quoteme.ie said the implementation of the gender directive targeted young women:
‘Statistics prove that young male drivers cause more accidents with significantly more serious consequences than young females. Up until the gender directive became effective, insurance premiums fairly reflected the higher risk for young males. Now in a post gender directive world, young females are effectively subsidizing the cost of car insurance for young males’
The research sourced the price of private motor premiums from July to October 2012-prior to the implementation of the Commission’s directive. This information was then compared to the price of premiums from the same four months in 2013-after the ruling had taken effect.
Females in the age bracket 25-30 faced the brunt of the ruling with the price of their premiums costing 19.3% more on average. And when men from the same group were compared to their female counterparts, they experienced an average 0.5% decrease on the price of their premiums.
The survey also found young males aged 17-24 experienced an average 10.2% decrease on the cost of their car insurance. This statistic is in stark contrast to what young Irish males usually experience when getting their car insurance as it is commonly known that they were once charged at much higher rates than women.
Young females in the 17-24 age group were once again hit hard by the directive with an average increase in price of 7.2%.
The survey included a 21 year old male who in 2012 was paying €1400 to keep his car insured. Following the ruling this figure dropped by 34% and in 2013 the same young man was paying 930 upon renewal.
This contrasts greatly with a 24 year old woman who saw her insurance shoot up by 33%. After paying €530 in 2012 for car insurance, the same woman experienced a surge in price of €170, bringing the amount she paid last year to €700.
Male drivers over the age of thirty experienced a slight surge in price with their premiums costing on average 2.7% more.
Female drivers over thirty also found the price of their premiums increase, at the much larger rate of 10.2% on average.
The ruling, which came into effect on the 21stof December in 2012, meant that men could no longer be charged at a higher rate than women when purchasing insurance. The European Court of Justice (ECJ) implemented the new measures following a case that was brought to them by Belgian consumer group Test-Aschat.
In March of 2012, the group argued that taking gender into consideration as a risk factor breached EU rules on gender equality. Insurers had previously attributed the price differences to the fact that young men are more likely to be involved in road accidents than women.
As a result of the Commission’s directive young female drivers saw their premiums soar last year.
In 2012 there were 162 fatalities on Irish roads; 67% of these were male and 30% of these were 25 and under. RSA also issued a fact book for 2011 in January of this year in which they noted that in 2011, 17-24 year old male drivers were six times more likely to be killed on the road than any other drivers.