Just because you have bought cover for your vehicle, it doesn't actually mean you are protected from any damage or accident for as long as your policy lasts.

This is because there are several ways that your car can suffer invalidated insurance, which means your policy will be rendered invalid because of a flaw.

These flaws can include making any modification to your car, if you start accepting money in return for providing lifts, or if a named driver on your policy has has made any claims in the past.

To avoid falling victim to invalidated insurance you must always inform your insurer if any of the above is a situation you find yourself in.

Adding to the value of your car can increase the likelihood of it being stolen and would boost the cost of premiums - more information on how modifying your car can affect your insurance can be found here.

And it doesn't stop there. You must also inform your insurer of any change in your personal circumstances i.e. if you switch jobs, as some professions may lead to more dangers on the road, resulting in higher insurance costs. Although, the general population aren't stunt drivers.

In regard to accepting payments for giving your friend the odd lift to work, insurers will look to hit you hard. Driving friends and family around obviously doesn't make a difference, however, according to the Association of British Insurers, car-sharing becomes an issue for insurance premiums when the vehicle seats more than eight passengers.

If you are planning on taking a trip abroad with your vehicle you should notify your insurer. Despite if you have comprehensive cover, insurers may downgrade this to third-party insurance if you leave the UK, which could prove to be a nightmare scenario if you are unfortunate enough to suffer an accident whilst out of the country. To avoid this make sure to check whether your provider will allow you to upgrade your policy or add European car insurance before setting off on your travels.

Other reasons why your car insurance could be invalidated that you may not be aware of include:

  • Leaving your car keys in the ignition is likely not to be sufficient excuse if your car is stolen. Always be careful during the winter months if you are leaving your vehicle running to defrost.
  • Suffering an accident is unfortunate, but suffering one while not holding a valid MOT is inexcusable when it comes to dealing with insurers.
  • If you damage your car by driving through floodwater, you may not receive much sympathy from insurers as you have likely ignored 'road closed' signs.
  • Driving for work purposes may not be included in your insurance policy. This can happen if you've stated on your motor insurance application that you only use your car for social, domestic or pleasure reasons, however, you end up having an accident while on your way to and from work.
  • If your driving is affected by your vision, then failing to wear the appropriate glasses while driving could invalidate your insurance policy as you won't meet the requirements for your driving license.

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