In the UK it is a compulsory requirement for vehicles on the road to have car insurance, but there are extra forms of car insurance which provide additional flexibility and reassurance especially if you wish to protect your no claims discounts or if you want to avoid paying the high voluntary excess. One of these extra reassurance providers is the cosmetic car insurance policies.
Cosmetic car insurance: What is it?
Often cars suffer from small damages such as an accidental scratch or even a dent, but this small damage can still lead to a hefty repair bill depending on the car and the level of finish. For example, a new sport luxury vehicle will cost you hundreds of pounds, if not more, in repairs for small damages to the vehicle.
With the cosmetic car insurance, this cost can be covered without you having to claim on the standard policy. Indeed, the cost of the cosmetic car insurance can close the difference between mandatory and voluntary excess on the main policy and when combined can amount to be more than the cost of repair.
With cosmetic car insurance you can claim for minor bodyworks damage without risking your no-claims discount. Having the no claims discount accruing year on year is very valuable as it keeps the premium down in the long run.
What’s not covered by the cosmetic car insurance policy?
Whilst cosmetic car insurance is ideal to get the odd chip or scratch sorted, it doesn’t serve as an all-time solution to keep you vehicle in a showroom state.
Also in many cases, cars that are older than 5 years or have more than 60,000 miles on the clock wouldn’t be covered by this type of policy.
The size of the scrapes and chips is also considered as chips deeper than 3mm or bigger than 1.5cm in diameter will not be covered in the policy. Scrapes, scuffs or dents over 15cm in diameter or 3mm deep are also excluded as is damage to the bonnet, roof or boot.
Additionally, alloy wheels must be manufacturers standard and some paints are not allowed.
So is a cosmetic insurance policy worth it?
These policies have a max pay-out and there is a limit on the number of claims you can make, however if you find your vehicle getting constants little scratches and chips, then the professional repair is worth it.
Do I have to tell my existing insurer about any cosmetic claims?
It’s tempting to think that cosmetic car insurance claims wouldn’t affect your main policy and some providers don’t require you to report these claims, but you should err in the side of caution by finding out from your main car insurance provider first. If you are found to have not declared all the information as per the main car insurance provider’s requirements, they may declare your car insurance policy as void.