Budgeting "How Tos"

How To Cancel UK Car Insurance (+8 Things To NEVER Forget)

Car insurance is a necessity for anyone using a car in the UK by law, however there may be situations where you no longer need to have an insurance policy.

You actually don’t need to keep your UK car insurance if you’re declaring your car SORN (System Of Records Notices). SORN is a designation given to vehicles that are no longer being used on the road.

If you’re looking to cancel your car insurance it can be done quickly and easily. It may be that your insurer will apply a closing fee if you are not at the end of your policy, or if the policy is new, but this will change from provider to provider.

Cancelling Your UK Car Insurance Over The Phone

The easiest way is to simply call your provider. If you have your documents to hand, including your policy number that will speed things up but they can usually find your records from your personal information.

Everything can normally be wrapped up over the phone and the representative you speak to will be able to outline any fees they may want to charge. 

Always ask for proof of cancellation, whether that be via email or post. Once cancelled with your insurer we’d recommend contacting your bank and cancelling your direct debit if you have one.

Cancelling Your UK Car Insurance Online

Most car insurance companies will have an online portal to allow you to access your documents and your options such as cancelling and renewing your policies.

You will usually require a few items to prove your identity and log on such as your policy number, address and car number plate. If you don’t have these there will usually be an option to reset your login details or speak to an advisor online.

Once you’re in, navigating is normally simple – find the option to cancel and follow the onscreen instructions. It’s worth taking a note of any reference numbers or a screenshot of the confirmation screen once you’ve cancelled for your records as well.

Ask Your New Insurer

If you are cancelling an old policy to move to a new provider they may be able to cancel your existing policy for you. In fact some offer a diarised service whereby you can opt for a new policy with a new provider ahead of your renewal date, and they will take care of the rest.

Don’t assume this though. Confirm with the new provider if they will be taking care of the old policy otherwise you could end up paying two premiums in error and you probably won’t be able to get a refund!

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Things To Keep In Mind When Cancelling Your Car Insurance

  • Driving a car without insurance is illegal in the UK no matter what. When you cancel a policy you will receive a date and time that the cover stops. Don’t be tempted to use the car after this time if you haven’t taken out a new policy.
  • If you’re looking to save money, you may be able to downgrade your policy. For example, if your current policy is ‘Fully Comprehensive’, that will cover you for damage to your car and someone else’s in the event of an accident. We’d always recommend this option, however ‘Third Party, Fire and Theft’ is usually a cheaper option. It won’t cover a third party’s car damage if you are in an accident that is your fault, however if you aren’t using the car much it can be a cheaper way of insuring yourself. 
  • Be honest when applying for new insurance. It may be tempting to bend the truth to try and save money on an insurance policy, particularly if you’ve had speeding fines or accidents in the past. DO NOT DO THIS! If you’re in a future accident, and it’s discovered you haven’t been completely honest on your policy application, this could void your cover.
  • Check if your policy has benefits. Some insurers will offer breakdown cover as standard or even an incentive for taking out insurance with them. If you’re paying for breakdown cover elsewhere, cancelling could be an easy way of saving money each month.
  • Make sure your policy is correct. Most people are on the correct policy however if you have any changes in your travel situation, for example your mileage dramatically increases or you start using your car for business purposes, then let your insurer know. 
  • Shop around. Many insurers will offer a cheap introductory rate. It’s always worth checking with competitors when it comes to renewal time.
  • Make sure your car is road worthy. Even if you’re fully insured, a car that isn’t deemed roadworthy could still result in an insurance policy not paying out. Keep your tyres inflated and check their tread, make sure the car is MOT’d if necessary and regularly check your brake lights among other things to make sure the car is deemed roadworthy.
  • Keep track of your no claims bonus. If you’ve never been involved in an accident, your insurer may offer a no claims bonus. This means you could be entitled to a cheaper insurance premium. This can often be transferred between insurers, although each year’s bonus is usually confirmed once the year is fully complete.
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Fully qualified CISI Investment adviser for 5 year. Managed UK private client portfolios.
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