Expired licences validity extension: what insurance companies are saying

Expired licences validity extension: what insurance companies are saying

Following the announcement by the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC) that all licences which have expired from 26 March and including up to the end of August, will be valid until the end of January 2021, insurance companies have moved to clarify how this may affect claims.

The announcement came on Wednesday, 22 July, after numerous calls to the Department of Transport for the grace period to be extended to January 2021.

The AA has been rallying the drive to #ExtendTheLicence with an online petition which saw more than 20 000 signatures within a week in a bid to get the government to extend the grace period for expired licences to January 2021.

The RTMC said in a statement: “All learners licences, driving licence cards, temporary driving licences and professional driving permits that expired from 26 March up to 31 Aug 2020 are extended to 31 Jan 2021.”

Insurance companies on expired licence validity extension

According to BusinessLIVE, the general consensus amongst insurance companies is that an expired licence would not affect a motorist’s cover.

Outsurance

“We would not reject a claim for an expired licence if that expiry is due to delays caused by Covid-19 affecting the ability to have it renewed,” says Outsurance’s Head of Client Services Natasha Kuwalesor.

“As a general rule, we do not consider expired licences a valid rejection reason, especially if there is no materiality to the loss”.

King Price

According to King Price, if your licence card is expired and an accident occurs or your vehicle is stolen, insurers will have to pay those claims, as the licence would not be material to the incident.

“What you certainly need to do is renew your licence as soon as possible — but it won’t affect your cover. Just make sure the vehicle is always roadworthy, and there are no additional factors that can cause or contribute to an accident,” says King Price’s customer experience partner Wynand van Vuuren.

Discovery Insure

Discovery Insure expressed the same sentiment, saying drivers and vehicle owners will be recognised as legally licenced should they need to claim against an insurance plan provided they are in possession of a valid licence, albeit expired.

The new law published in the government gazette states the following:

“In these directions, the “Directions” means the directions on measures to address, prevent, and combat the spread of Covid-19: determination of extension for validity period of learners licences, driving licence cards, licence discs, professional driving permits and registrations of motor vehicles, published under government notice No.544, in Government Gazette No.43339 of 20 May 2020:

1. All learners licences, driving licence cards, temporary driving licences and professional driving permits that expired from 26 March up to 31 Aug 2020 are extended to 31 Jan 2021.

2. All motor vehicle licence discs, temporary permits, and roadworthy certificates that expired during the period that commenced from 26 March 2020 up to and including 31 May 2020 are deemed to be valid and their validity period is extended for a further grace period ending on 31 August 2020.

3. Motor trade number licences that expired during the period that commenced from 26 March 2020 up to and including 31 May 2020 are deemed to be valid and are extended for a further grace period ending on 30 November 2020.

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