New rules offer improved protection for motor accident victims

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THE European Parliament has approved the introduction of revisions to the Motor Insurance Directive (MID).

Speaking in the European Parliament, Ireland South MEP Deirdre Clune welcomed the vote and declared it a “good day for consumers”.

MEP Clune said: “The updated motor insurance rules aim to ensure that citizens are better protected and treated equally in the EU when accidents occur and when insuring their vehicles. We voted for a new motor insurance legislation and this is a significant win for people everywhere in Europe, including in Ireland. The new rules will better protect victims when accidents occur in any EU member state.

“It is essential that Irish consumers and Europeans are better protected and treated equally in the EU when accidents occur and when insuring their vehicles. This legislation makes sure that people are compensated for road accidents even where the insurance company goes bankrupt. It creates new tools for all citizens to be able to compare prices, tariffs and coverage from insurance providers.”

The new rules mean that now, as a consumer, if someone moves from one European country to another they can bring your claims history with them and the no claims bonus they have built up.

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“While vehicles like eBikes, segways or electric scooters are not included in this European legislation, I think it is important that each country does look at how to manage the huge increase we have seen in the use of these vehicles, especially in urban areas, so we can keep all pedestrians and road users safe.”

The Directive also provides better protection for consumers in the event that an insurance  company becomes insolvent. Now all Member States must set up bodies to compensate injured parties in a timely manner. Until now, there have been no EU-level rules to ensure that injured parties are swiftly compensated in such situations.

Ms Clune added: “The revision also addresses uninsured driving, which is unfortunately a problem that also affects cross-border travel. It will now be possible to carry out checks on the insurance of vehicles registered in another Member State, and to exchange data, if these checks form part of a general system of checks on the national territory, are not discriminatory and do not require stopping the vehicle.”

The law now needs to be formally adopted by the Council, the other co-legislator, and published in the EU Official Journal. Member States will then have 24 months to transpose the amended directive into national law.