What ever way you look at it, this quote is incredibly over the top!
A 18-year-old male provisional driver in north Leitrim has been quoted an eye-watering €18,693 for motor insurance.
The quote was for comprehensive insurance on a 2004 1.2L Ford Fiesta and, ironically enough, included a €100 discount for applying for insurance online.
Cllr Padraig Fallon has described the figure as “absolute nonsense.”
“It’s not like these young people are just hopping into cars and driving away. They now have to take 12 lessons (with an ADI registered instructor) and so it is wrong to penalise them just because of their age and experience,” he argued.
The North Leitrim councillor highlighted the issue at this week’s Manorhamilton Municipal District meeting.
The councillor put forward a motion calling for an examination of the motor insurance industry “due to the extortionate rates being quoted to young drivers.”
He said the prices being quoted were well above what any young driver could afford to pay and, in many instances, were five or six times the value of the vehicle being insured.
Although there are monitored driving apps which allow some discounts on the cost of insurance, Cllr Fallon said these were often mileage limited and young drivers in rural areas were being forced to pay for additional mileage as a result.
“There is a box you can have connected and it monitors your driving but this has a restricted amount of mileage you can do. If you live in a rural area you can very easily run up more than this limited amount of mileage and you then have to pay additional fees to ‘top up’ the amount of miles you can travel under the policy,” he pointed out at the meeting.
“Most young people who need cars are driving more than 30 miles each way to work or school and they need a car to do this.
“I think something needs to be done about the quotes being given to young drivers. Families are finding they have to help with insurance costs for their children and it isn't fair.
“The insurance industry needs to be cognisant of the fact that one size doesn’t fit all when it comes to a (motoring insurance) policy.”
Cllr Sean McDermott seconded the motion and acknowledged more needs to be done to address the abnormally high levels of awards made for relatively minor injuries in motor accidents in Ireland.
“Our claim levels here are much higher than in the UK and the amount of compensation is much higher,” he pointed out.
“This must be looked at.”
Cllr Mary Bohan referred to a recent report which showed that people in Ireland are being paid three, and even four times, the amount of compensation for very minor injuries here than claimants are being paid in the UK.
“That is why the costs of policies are so high. I have raised this myself over a number of years and we need to address the high levels of payments being made here in Ireland,” she said.
Cllr Bohan said a committee was being set up to look at this issue.
Cllr Frank Dolan welcomed this move stating that something needs to be done on this as soon as possible.