When is it right to make a medical negligence claim?

Analysts have claimed that there has been an upsurge in the amount of successful medical claims being made against health services for malpractice and negligence. Indeed, now that solicitors are well versed in how to deal with such cases, more and more patients are stepping up to receive compensation for the damages caused to them.

Medical negligence lawyers can definitely get the job done; but it’s important that you don’t waste your time, as well as the court’s time, by filing a case when there really isn’t one to be made. This article aims to help you decide if your case is actually viable or not.

Early signs that you’ve been made a victim

Usually, when a mistake has been made, most of the time your health care staff will do their utmost best to remedy the situation. You will be informed at the right moment that something has gone wrong, and that everything possible is being done to fix it.

Unfortunately, bad apples do exist. Some healthcare staff will attempt to pretend like there’s nothing wrong, or gradually distance themselves from the mistake.

This in turn will lead to hesitant staff not answering your questions directly in an honest manner.

Trying out the official channels of complaint

There are several complaints commissions that have been set up specifically to deal with complaints of medical nature. The CQC, or the Care Quality Commission, will look into your case to see what can be done.

Of course, should this route of complaint lead you nowhere, adding to your frustration and anger at how you are being treated, it might be an indicator that it’s the right time to change tack.

Being sure that you deserve compensation

Some are understandably apprehensive about demanding compensation. It can take a lot of time; some are afraid that it would damage relations with their carers and thereby complicate future treatment.

Others choose not to pursue compensation because they feel like they just need to get on with their treatment. However, it is highly advisable that you do pursue it, for several different reasons.

The most important reason involves the fact that you could be losing colossal amounts of money that could be invaluable to paying for your further treatment.

It’s the responsible thing to do

Others may stand to gain from your experience; if you take your issue to court, you could inspire others in your position to get compensation for mistakes that they’ve had to suffer from.

This in turn would mean that healthcare services would be more careful in the future when it comes to practicing medicine and rectifying mistakes.

It’s always difficult to make the decision to embark on this journey; however, it’s usually worth it.

The Truth About Insurance Claims

With the recent data revealing the steady increase in whiplash claims despite the drop in road accident injuries, many consumers may be rejoicing.

A report released by the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries shows that the increase of claims has cost the insurance industry nearly £400m. However, companies have yet to mitigate the blow by relaying the cost to UK motorists. In fact, the data indicates that the average cost of an insurance policy has decreased.

This is partially because now, more than ever, it’s easier for UK drivers to file a whiplash claim. Whiplash, a soft-tissue injury to the neck, can occur whether the accident is severe or minor. A person experiences whiplash when there is an abrupt jerk of the head forwards, backwards or sideways.

The sudden extension and flexion of the head, known as a neck sprain, can cause damage to the ligaments in the neck, cervical muscles, nerve endings, intervertebral joints and discs. Although a person may experience whiplash, the symptoms may not be prevalent until 24 hours or more after the initial trauma. The symptoms can range in severity and may include neck pain and stiffness, headaches, dizziness, muscle spasms, pain in the shoulders and lower back, numbness in the arm and hands, blurred vision, difficulty concentrating and irritability.

Whiplash most often occurs during road traffic accidents when a car from behind collides, causing the head to jerk backward and then whip forward. Anyone can experience whiplash, even in a minor accident in which the speed was low or there is no damage to the car.

The length of recovery and the treatment required depends on the severity of the injuries. In minor cases, a person may recover within a couple of weeks. However, it may take several months or even years for someone to recover from a severe neck sprain and other injuries associated with whiplash.

Oftentimes, it is advised that motorists seek legal aid to help rectify the problems they have incurred from their whiplash. Not only does it cause physical harm and pain, but a victim’s injury may be so severe that there is an absence from work and a decreased quality of life.

A lawyer that specializes in road traffic accidents can help victims file a claim and receive compensation. The report indicated that on average, claimants in small third-party injury claims are awarded roughly £8,400 in whiplash compensation. This is on the lower end of the scale, as some claims can be as much as £100,000.

The payment can help cover any medical bills, lost income and other injury-related expenses. Yet, with so many insurance companies paying for claims, some experts question how likely it is that motorists’ insurance prices will continue to be unaffected. For now, it’s all a waiting game.

How to protect your lifestyle

Sometimes it is possible to hear some quite extraordinary views about the nature of insurance protection and lifestyle.

Occasionally these are close to being potentially dangerous myths and here are a few of the more typical ones together with a rational comment.

The government will help pay your mortgage if you can’t

Although not totally incorrect, this is very significantly misleading.

If you lose your income and are unable to continue repayments on your mortgage, your mortgage provider may be willing to help, where they can, for a short period. 

After that, they may inevitably move to repossession.

Government help in such situations is extremely limited.  It may relate only to helping with the interest repayments on your mortgage and it might be conditional upon you having used any existing financial reserves you have beforehand.

If you’re keen to protect your family home in the event of things such as redundancy or sickness, it might be unwise to rely exclusively on the government aid. 

That is why various forms of mortgage protection insurance exist, such as those policies offered by Drewberry insurance and others.

My employer is under an obligation to keep paying my salary if I am sick

That might typically be true but it is important to recognise some of the limitations implicit in that statement.

Firstly, sickness is only one thing that may rob you of your income.  If, for example, you are made redundant, the statutory minimum redundancy pay is actually relatively limited – particularly if you have not built up an extensive service record with the employer concerned.

Secondly, even in the case of sickness, your employer is under an obligation to pay you sick pay for 26 weeks only.  After that time, your income may stop and then you may immediately struggle to continue paying your mortgage.

That is why it might be advisable to consider things such as mortgage payment protection insurance.

Mortgage lenders won’t repossess your property if you are seriously ill

Unfortunately, there may be little hard evidence to support this assertion.

Of course, you may hope that in such circumstances your mortgage provider may be sympathetic but their patience is unlikely to be unlimited.  The one thing you perhaps will not want if you are long-term sick and unable to work is to have to start to worry about whether or not you and your family will be able to retain the roof over your head.

In order to fully protect yourself against such circumstances, you might wish to consider investigating critical illness cover – something that might generate income cover for you for an extended period, perhaps running up to your normal retirement age.

You can’t have two people insured for the same mortgage

Yes, you can.

As it is perfectly possible for a mortgage to be in joint names, it is equally possible to cover the joint risks associated with the two mortgage holders.  That might include life, sickness and redundancy type issues.

Which are the best vans for cheap insurance?

Perhaps you’ve just started a new business that requires a van, or you’re moving house and need to hire a van for the day to move your belongings. Whatever the reason, it’s a legal requirement that you take out van insurance to ensure that, should anything go wrong or you are unfortunately involved in an accident, your insurer will cover any costs of damage or loss.

The cost of van insurance is determined by the category of insurance group your van falls in. There are 20 van insurance groups, with number one being the cheapest level of insurance. Vans are categorized on a number of factors, including:

Weight and size

This will affect the steering and breaking, so it naturally follows that heavier vehicles are much more difficult to drive and therefore the risk of an accident is higher. As a result, owners of larger vans will be quoted higher premiums than those who drive smaller vehicles.

Value

A no brainer this: the more expensive the van is the higher the cost of insurance will be.

Repairs

Another contributing factor towards which insurance group category your vehicle will fall in is the cost of repairs, as it is usually more difficult to source the spare parts for cheaper models, so they become more difficult to replace.

If this is the case, then it’s likely that your van will be assigned to a higher insurance group to reflect the costs involved in sourcing the parts in the event of a claim.

Security

Vans that are more likely to be stolen, such as those that are unsecured of lack security features, will also be categorised in a higher van insurance group, so it may be worth looking into investing into some immobilisers or security alarms before you contact a company like Swinton van insurance for cover.

Usage

How you intend to use your van will also have an impact on your level of cover and cost. If you are self-employed and hope to use the van to transport your own belongings, such as your ‘tools of trade’, you will most likely be covered by what is known as ‘carriage of own goods’ cover. On the other hand, if you’re transporting goods that do not belong to you, i.e. you’re delivering other people’s belongings, then this type of cover is ‘haulage/hire and reward’ cover.

Other factors

Where you choose to park your van will impact the cost of your insurance premium, so this will be vital information for the insurer. If you are able to park your vehicle in a secure location overnight away from the risk of theft, then you will be offered a cheaper quote than if you intended to keep it parked on the side of the road.

Joint motorcycle and car insurance

Owners of both car and motorcycles often find it difficult to insure their vehicles under one plan, citing that it’s generally more expensive than insuring them separately as well as it putting their no claims bonus at risk should they have an accident on one or the other. This, however, is not always the case, with many insurers now offering joint vehicle insurance, with discounted premiums for their safe drivers.

6 wheel insurance

Joint motorcycle and car insurance policies are now often referred to as 6 wheel insurance, allowing those who own both types of vehicles to be insured under the same plan. These insurance policies have been in demand for some time but only recently have they begun to crop up. Bikers are generally more prudent drivers as they are used to being more exposed on the road, meaning they also tend to be safer car drivers. Insurers have realised this and now have begun to offer competitive insurance policies to reflect this.

Save time and cost

Insuring your car and bike under one policy is also massively convenient as it saves a lot of time and effort reading into separate insurance policies that can often be confusing. Once you have your policy, your renewal dates are consolidated, protecting your no claims bonus for both vehicles. These insurance policies are a good comprehensive option, offering UK and European accident and breakdown cover as well as £50,000 in motor protection should you get in an accident that wasn’t your fault with an uninsured driver. These insurance policies are comprehensive, meaning that if you don’t want that level of protection, you could be saving more by using third party insurers.

How it works

With your average comprehensive motorbike insurance policy and car insurance policy costing more than £600 combined, having some form of six wheel car insurance can save you considerable amounts of money, with the average combined cost coming to around £550. The price of insurance will obviously vary driver to driver, depending on the age, previous driving history, type of vehicle, eye sight and criminal convictions. So, be sure to get a quote and you could find yourself making considerable savings.

Compare online

Depending on your history and circumstances, it may be cheaper to insure separately, so use price comparison websites to calculate exactly what savings can be made. Using Swinton motorbike insurance in conjunction with a cheap third party policy could be a wiser option, so shop around for the best deals.

BIBA reports 1,500% growth in black box car insurance sales

The British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA) published their telematics car insurance industry research last week.

The report highlights the growth of the sector over the past year, and predicts that the ban on gender rating will amplify the growth in the take-up of black box car insurance policies.

This new kind of car insurance is particularly popular with young and new drivers who often find car insurance expensive and sometimes can’t even get a quote. The Telegraph recently reported that young males aged 17-22 now pay an average of £2,792 for their insurance. Having a box fitted to your car could make getting on the road a more realistic possibility for young drivers across the UK.

Demand for telematics is predicted to further accelerate in light of a new EU directive, whereby a driver’s gender cannot be used in generating their quote. Having a box fitted could therefore be an attractive option for young female drivers seeking to avoid the expected rise in their premiums.

Another benefit of the box is that insurers can evaluate young drivers more quickly. Instead of waiting for your annual renewal to earn NCD, your policy could be reviewed every three months. Not all telematics providers have quarterly reviews, but one interesting insurer that does is ingenie – as well as being backed by Gary Lineker and underwritten by insurance heavyweights Ageas and RSA, the black box car insurer also uses a mobile app to send frequent driving feedback to their customers, as well as providing helpful tips on how to become a better driver.

BIBA are already forecasting 500,000 annual box insurance policy sales within the next two years.

Making an insurance claim against your employers

 Accidents at work are extremely common, with roughly 118,000 injury claims made per year in the UK. These cases can range from repetitive strain injury to serious work related accidents.

If you feel that you have been injured at work through no fault of your own, you should seek legal representation to help get financial compensation.

Workers are often worried about making insurance claims against their employers as they feel it may jeopardise their job security as well as their relationship with their employer. This shouldn’t be the case as your employer is responsible for the safety of the workforce and you may well be able to sue for unfair dismissal if a claim gets you in hot water with the boss.

If the accident occurred as a result of another employee, you are also liable to make a claim under vicarious liability.

If you’re injured at work, you should immediately contact your supervisor or manager and get them to log it in the accident report book that all employers are legally required to have. This will be essential in validating your claim further down the line. Be sure to note down all the details of the accident in as much detail as possible.

If there were any witnesses at the time of the accident, it’s important that you ask them to make a statement as this can make the claiming process much easier. Some employees may be reluctant to report against your employer and that is something you have to respect.

You should then have your injuries examined by a doctor who can then decide how you need to be treated. If you can, ask your medical practitioner for a letter outlining the injuries sustained to help support your insurance claim.

A successful insurance claim against an employer will depend on being able to conclusively prove that the injuries you sustained were of no fault of your own. This can be especially difficult with things like mesothelioma compensation claims, where significant sums are often sought, because it can take years for the illness to develop.

You should not worry about this affecting your job, your employer is fully insured and is not allowed to make you redundant as they will be faced with further legal action for unfair dismissal. Your employer, if anything, should be understanding of the injury and help you in making your claim. There are many specialist injury lawyers that can help you with your claim so be sure to research into which firm is the best at handling cases similar to yours.

Biggest hazards when visiting London

With millions of visitors descending upon London this year for the Olympics, there are a number of hazards and dangers that visitors should be aware of to ensure that they have a safe and enjoyable trip. Here are our top things to watch out for when visiting London.

Pickpockets

London is one of the worst locations for pickpockets in the world, standing in at no.10 on the list of destinations where tourists are most likely to be pickpocketed. When travelling on public transport or walking in busy high-street, making sure your belongings are not easily accessible is of the utmost importance. There are over 20,000 reported pickpocketing offences per year but this number is decreasing as police help crack down on thieves.  If you have lost something on public transport, be sure to visit the lost property office on Baker Street to see if your belongings have been returned.

Road safety

Londoners drive on the left side of the road unlike the rest of Europe where they drive on the right, meaning that you must always look the right way when crossing the road. There are many accidents caused by unsuspecting tourists who are not familiar with UK traffic, so be sure to contact www.injurylawyers4u.co.uk if you feel you are entitled to compensation.

Taxis

If you are out and about late at night and want to use a taxi service, be sure to use a certified taxi service. London has a huge problem with unlicensed mini cabs, with many criminal offenses being committed by illegal taxi drivers. It’s always important that you pre book a taxi with a reputable taxi service. There are a number of services which can help you find a licensed mini cab company near you. Travelling alone is not advised, especially for women, who are the most vulnerable. Always notify someone if you have to use a taxi service that is questionable to travel around London.

Street works

With many areas of London being renovated for the Olympics, there are many areas that may be dangerous for pedestrians. With many uneven pavements and roads you may trip and hurt yourself if you are not paying attention. If you are seriously injured in a public place, contacting accident claims UK  may help you gain compensation to cover medical bills.

Muggings

When travelling around make sure that your valuable items are never on show. There are thousands of muggings every year in London, meaning you should always be careful when walking alone in the streets at night. Avoid poorly lit streets and always try and notify someone if you are travelling alone at night.

On the whole London is a safe place if you are prudent and sensible when travelling. Keep your wits about you and don’t flash expensive items in public and you should have a wonderful visit.

London motorcycle theft on the increase

According to a number of insurers, London is by far the worst place for motorcycle theft in the UK. A comprehensive report into motorbike theft showed that motorcycle owners in parts of London are 30 times more likely to be a victim than in other parts country. The top 10 locations in the UK are as follows:

1. South West London

2. North London

3. West London

4. South East London

5. East London

6. North West London

7. Enfield

8. Huddersfield

9. Sutton

10. Twickenham

Costing the industry roughly £105m per year, motorcycle theft in London continues to increase at a staggering pace. With considerable policing cuts being made and the Metropolitan police’s stolen vehicle unit being closed, things are showing little signs of improving. The additional survey made by the Motorcycle Crime Reduction Group report that 50% of all motorcycle theft occurs in London, with an average of 77 bikes and scooters being stolen each day. These worrying statistics mean now is a better time than ever to make sure your bike is fully insured by insurers such as MotorCycle Direct.

So what can London motorcyclists do to help keep their bikes from being stolen?

Keep your bike in a Garage

Keeping your bike off the street and out of sight will drastically reduce the risk of theft. If you don’t have access to a garage, make sure it’s grounded with an anchor and well covered.

Use insurance approved security devices

With a number of security devices on offer from trackers to immobilisers, bike owners should invest in a number of devices to keep their bikes safe as well as keep insurance premiums down.

Lock your bike to immovable objects

Many thieves are now taking more expensive bikes and putting them straight into the back of their vans. Properly securing your bike to an immovable object is therefore of the upmost importance.

Be careful where you park

Avoid poorly lit, isolated areas as these are the most common spots for bike theft. If you can, place your bike near a CCTV camera in a well exposed area.

Sports bike and scooter owners are by far the most at risk from theft, so make sure your vehicle is properly locked and secured at all times. With a bit of common sense and investment you should be able to considerably decrease the chance of motorcycle theft, even in London

I’m a self-employed builder – do I need public liability insurance?

In the construction trade dealing with cash flow to keep suppliers and clients happy is critical and seeing insurance payments go out every month can be very frustrating. There might be some policies that you can afford to do without but, self-employed or not, public liability insurance is absolutely not one of them. Here’s why.

What is public liability insurance?

Public liability insurance protects you from a claim made by a member of the public who suffered injury or a loss because of you. As a builder, the likelihood of such a claim being made is greater than for other businesses. This isn’t a comment on the quality of your work. You are building the physical environment around us, and usually have no choice but to work in close proximity to the public so the scope for a claim, is high.

When might I need it?

An easy example to picture is if you are working at a height – say, fixing some guttering – and a tool falls and hits a passing member of the public. They can make a claim against you for their injuries, and depending on how high you were, what the tool was and where it hits them, that can be very significant. Likewise if someone gets electrocuted from a light fitting you have installed, or if your van damages someone’s property, claims can be made that PIL would cover for.

What would happen if I didn’t have it?

Public liability insurance is not there to prevent you from prosecution, it’s there to make sure claimants have a better chance of getting their compensation. That is because, if you don’t have cover and have a significant claim made against you, it has the ability to put you out of business and, if you are a self-employed sole trader, rather than a limited company, bankrupt you. It is this point that makes public liability insurance so important. But even with smaller claims, the risk for small companies, especially the construction game where cash flow is so important, are significant. Furthermore, clients look for builders with PIL. Not having it will restrict your access to business.

What else do I need to know?

Your policy will not just cover you for the cost of the award made to any successful claimant, and remember that it has to be your fault for the claim to be valid. You should also be covered for costs, expenses, ambulance and treatment costs that the NHS could seek compensation for and legal costs if you are faced with criminal prosecution. Premiums differ with the type of business you are, so it is advisable to speak to an insurance company with expertise in covering members of the construction industry. You should also look online, to tailor a quote that suits you and get a feeling for the market price for your insurance and peace of mind.

At what stage in life should I start considering life insurance?

There aren’t many of us who enjoy contemplating our demise, but what’s that saying
about death and taxes? As unpleasant as some people might find it, it pays to
plan for the future and make sure our loved ones aren’t left in the financial
lurch when we die.

So when is the right time to think about getting life insurance? It varies significantly
from case to case. Your personal circumstances are everything.

Home and Family

For young adults with no dependents and no mortgage, the financial implications of
death are far less grave, and life insurance may well be unnecessary. But the
moment you buy a flat or house or, more importantly, start a family, a policy
is well worth considering. Without you to help, would your family be able to
keep up with mortgage repayments, school fees and the countless other bills and
costs we incur in our everyday lives? If the answer is no, or if you want to
make sure your family does not have to deal with financial as well as emotional
heartache, you should act. Mortgage life insurance pays a lump sum to your
mortgage lender upon your death, alleviating that particular burden for the
loved ones you have left behind. Visit insurance sites like mortgagelifeinsurance.org.uk for more information.

Age

Without wanting to alarm anyone, we really could get hit by a bus this afternoon. That
said, obviously, the younger you are, the less likely you are to die. It is
very understandable why young adults – who will likely have less money to spend
than in the future – might dismiss life insurance as expensive and unnecessary,
even if they do own their own home and have a spouse and/or children. That’s
their decision, but there is affordable life insurance out there. Term life
insurance is the most common form of cover and requires insurers to only cover
applicants for a set period of time, which means they are prepared to offer
young and healthy people coverage from as little as a few pounds a month. Visit
www.termlifeinsurancequotes.co.uk for more information.

Health

It is not uncommon for smokers to pay more than double what a non-smoker of the
same gender and age would for term life insurance. When evaluating what risk
you pose, insurers will pay a great deal of attention to your lifestyle
including the dangers presented by your job, and you and your family’s history
of illness. While life insurance will be more expensive for people representing
a greater risk, it is also, if anything, more essential. As is critical illness
protection. Realistically, many of us will contend with illnesses such as
cancer before we die. The financial impact of paying for treatment and care,
and the loss of income you will suffer can mean your family is facing financial
difficulty before your death. Critical illness insurance sees a lump sum paid
to you once you are diagnosed with a critical illness so that you can pay for
treatment etc. Visit criticalillness.org.uk for more information.

 

High percentage of taxi drivers do not have the proper insurance

A 2010 audit revealed that, in some parts of the country, 90% of taxis were not correctly insured, potentially voiding the insurance claims of injured passengers and
other drivers involved in accidents, and heightening the probability of taxi
drivers facing a loss of earnings if it was off the road.

While the National Private Hire Association dismissed the report as unrepresentative, an
incident in Sheffield earlier in the year suggested the problem was very real. Fifty taxi drivers were discovered to be plying their trade without the correct policies and the companies they worked for stopped offering them jobs until
they had remedied the situation.

Investing in taxi insurance is an essential part of running a taxi business. In fact it is a
legal requirement. Read on for more information.

What is taxi insurance?

Taxi insurance is really like a car insurance policy specifically set up to give taxi owners
the strongest cover possible. There are many variations grouped under the taxi
insurance umbrella that drivers can choose from. If you get your taxi insurance quote online, you can quickly see the effect of changing your requirements on the overall cost of your policy. It is compulsory to have third party insurance.

Private Hire Insurance and Public Hire Insurance

The kind of taxi driver you are or the type of taxi company you run will have a big impact on the type of policy you choose. If you only deal with customers who book your
service then you need a private hire insurance policy. This will tend to be cheaper than public hire insurance, which is needed by drivers of Hackney Carriages. Public hire insurance covers black cabs which can pick up passengers on the street as well as take appointments and because insurers view public hire as slightly riskier, it costs more.

Single and Multiple Vehicle Insurances

A single vehicle insurance policy is typically available to drivers between 21 and 70 who
operate a single vehicle as a private or public-hire taxi. Three types of cover are offered: third party, third party fire and theft and comprehensive.

Things get a bit more complicated if you need to insure multiple taxis. Fleet insurance policies require you to give examples of your individual drivers’ experience and claims
history. This is further complicated if you have different drivers using the
same car on a shift basis. The same three types of cover are provided. If you run a rural private hire taxi firm, keep your eyes peeled for rural policies.

What is covered?

As mentioned above, policies split into three types: third party, third party fire and theft
and comprehensive. Third party is the most basic, protecting pedestrians,
passengers and other drivers but not the policy holder. Third party fire and
theft adds protection against vehicles catching fire or being stolen. Comprehensive cover adds protection against accidental damage and windscreen
damage.

Personal Liability for Pets

  • If your pet damages another person’s property, you could be liable for the damage. Whilst you think that your precious dog is capable of no harm, you may find they create accidental damage that leads to significant financial responsibility.

As the pet owner, you are responsible for your pet’s behaviour. If your pet dog is unruly or dangerous, for example, you could find that you are to blame for any damage or destruction that they cause. Your dog might not intend to break a precious vase in a house your visiting, or knock over a small child– but these accidents can happen.

Out of character:

You may find that your dog behaves out of character if they are taken to new surroundings – this can include destructive or dangerous behaviour. Your dog might never urinate inside in your home, for example, but if your dog is put in an unusual place with people and surroundings he doesn’t recognise – he could cause damage and embarrassment with destructive behaviour.

Behavioural training:

If your dog is deemed to have antisocial behaviour, you may want to take them for behavioural training. “But that’s so expensive!” you may reply – what many people don’t realise, however, is that good pet insurance can sometimes cover the cost of behavioural training. Contact your pet insurance provider to confirm how much they can support the cost of behavioural training, as long as it is deemed necessary by a recognised vet.

The cost of bad behaviour:

If your dog does misbehave, you could incur significant costs for the damage they cause. Dogs can be particularly exuberant and energetic; and if that energy is misdirected, it can cause more damage than you might expect.

Pet insurance:

Pet insurance can help prevent damage from arising from bad behaviour, by financially supporting your animal through necessary behavioural training. If your dog still causes damage, then pet insurance could cover you for that cost too. Good pet insurance could protect you against 
legal liability for up to £2 million. This could cover your dog injuring, killing or passing an illness to someone not employed by you or a member of your family. This personal liability protection would also cover damage to another’s property, as long as the property isn’t not under your care or belonging to your family.

You should personally take direct responsibility for all your pet’s actions, as he or she could unwittingly cause damage and destruction. By taking out pet insurance, you may find that you can also protect yourself financially.

About John Lewis Insurance

 

With John Lewis Pet Insurance you can choose from four levels of cover for vet’s fees so you can find the right level for you and your pet. Visit www.johnlewis-insurance.com/pet for further information and a quote.

 Terms, conditions, limitations, exclusions and eligibility criteria apply. A full copy of the policy wording and the insurance complaints procedure are available on request.

If you are disabled and would like to drive what is the first step?

If you have a disability, depending on it’s severity, you may well be used to facing challenges in your day-to-day life. Having a disability can be restrictive and frustrating. However, learning to drive, despite your disability can provide a kind of freedom you may not have experienced before. The feeling of freedom one feels when out on the open road is something that can bring real pleasure and joy. Depending on the severity of your disability, learning to drive is mostly exactly the same as it is for everyone else; take your lessons, take your theory and practical test and hey presto!

Age restrictions

The minimum age to learn to drive in the UK is 17, but if you receive the higher rate of Disability Living Allowance, including the mobility component you can start to learn to drive at 16. Furthermore, if you are aged between 16 and 24 you can get financial support to put towards the cost of driving lessons from a scheme called Motability.

Specialist instructors

When you have decided to learn to drive your fist step should be to seek out a professional driving instructor. Of course, all drivers should seek professional driving lessons, but as a disabled person, you may want to think about seeking out an instructor who has specialist knowledge of your specific needs. If possible try to find a driving instructor who has taken a specialist course in teaching disabled people. Always ask to see accreditation; instructors often take their special courses at Banstead Mobility Centre or the Transport Research Laboratory. Specialist instructors can teach you more than just how to drive. They can teach you how to get in and out of the car easily, how to get your wheelchair in and out of the car if you have one and how to use any adapted controls you may have. If your disability is minor, you may be able to learn in an unmodified car, or one that needs only minor alterations, making your search for an instructor and suitable vehicle slightly easier.

Insurance

Once you have learnt to drive and have passed your test, you may want to buy your first car. Buying your first car is one of the most exciting things to do in life, but it comes with a big responsibility and considerable cost. Once you have decided on the car you want, adapted it where necessary and informed the DVLA of your purchase and circumstances, you will need to insure your car. It is unwise to assume that a regular insurance policy will meet the needs of a disabled driver. There are some insurers that specialise in insuring disabled people; Chartwell insurers are experienced and knowledgeable in the field of disabled motorist insurance. Their ‘Freedom’ range of disabled motorist policies offer highly competitive rates.  More so, you will not be asked to answer invasive and irrelevant questions about your disability .You can learn more about disabled motorist insurance by vising chartwellinsurance.co.uk

Hidden costs of car insurance uncovered

 

Buying car insurance can be tricky, especially with the amount of different companies in the market and the range of different policies available to you. We all want to find the best car insurance quotes and may spend hours searching for what we think is the best deal, but what many of us may not realise is there can be significant costs hidden within your policy. So what are they and how can we avoid them?

Speeding Offences

In recent years car insurance companies have started to penalise drivers who are convicted of driving offences such as speeding or using a mobile phone whilst driving.

This can mean that on top of a paying a fine for such offences, drivers could face a considerable increase to their insurance premium in the months following their conviction. Drivers can help reduce, or in some cases even stop, this price hike by completing a speed awareness course or similar course depending on the nature of the offence.

Aside from driving offences, checking your insurance quote thoroughly before you buy could mean you avoid costly and unnecessary charges. Quite often quotes will be shown as a total price per year. However, be aware of interest rates if you decide to pay in instalments. Car insurance can be a costly affair so many people chose to pay in instalments, but if you can afford to pay for the year’s cover in one fell swoop then you could potentially save over £100.

Policy Adjustments

Policy adjustments are also an area where car insurance companies may charge you more than you’d expect. A simple change of name or address could cost you over £50 for each change made. Around Two thirds of car insurance companies will charge you for making any changes to your policy after you take it out.

Although this may seem steep, it is essential that you do tell your insurance company about any changes that affect your policy. It could prove to be much more expensive if your policy is incorrect as the insurance company could refuse to payout if you need to make a claim.

Cancellation charges

Finally, if you have to cancel your insurance policy mid way through the year, you may find that you get the remaining month’s payments back, but you could be charged a fee for cancelling your policy. On top of this you may also face increased premiums later on because you don’t receive any no claims discounts on future policies. By transferring your car insurance to another vehicle you could avoid these charges and also continue to build up a no claims bonus.

Other charges you may want to look out for are renewal or re-activation fees, which car insurance companies, justify as administration fees. These are uncommon but are definitely something to be aware of when you’re looking for car insurance quotes.

Euroferret.com is owned by Mediamash (NI) Limited, who are an Introducer Appointed Representative of Seopa Ltd. The quote system is owned and operated by Seopa Ltd, who are authorised and regulated by the FCA, number 313860. You can view our registration at www.fsa.gov.uk/register/firmSearchForm.do?sid=127135. We do not give financial advice on this website. If in doubt get professional advice and always read the policy information before purchasing an insurance contract.