Personal accident cover
If you’re shopping around for car insurance deals then it’s likely you’ll run into the phrase Personal Accident Cover pretty quickly. But what is it, and is it worth your precious money?
Most car insurance policies will include a level of personal accident cover, but we want you to be clued up when it comes to the optional extras. Our guide takes a look at the add-ons to your policy such as breakdown cover and courtesy car insurance – all the things that make the cautious of us pretty quickly rack up an increased annual insurance bill.
In This Guide:
- What is personal accident cover?
- Why should I get personal accident cover?
- Are there any restrictions?
- Can I invalidate my personal accident cover?
- How much does personal accident cover cost?
- Medical expenses
What is personal accident cover?
In a nutshell, Personal Accident Cover is an add-on to a car insurance policy that will ensure a level of compensation in the event that a driver, or their partner, are involved in an accident that either results in injury or death. It’s possible you’ll have a degree of cover in your policy, but you may want to increase this.
Why should I get personal accident cover?
The effects of being involved in an accident go well beyond the initial shock – the ripples can be felt extensively for an indiscernible length of time after. Those involved may have to take long periods of leave from employment due to being unable to work as a cause of injury, which can in turn put strain on both loved ones and financial matters. You may also require adjustments in the home or workplace, or even seek a new profession entirely. An accident can be absolutely life altering and devastating.
It also means that instead of waiting for the decision of a legal case, any cash benefits that are paid, are only dependent on your insurance and yourself, which can relieve a lot of stress.
Are there any restrictions?
Personal Accident Cover insures you in the event of any personal injury sustained in an accident, but there are some important restrictions and circumstances to be mindful of when you compare car insurance deals.
A comprehensive policy will give you some level of compensation, but watch out for Third-Party, Fire and Theft policies. Very few of these will include Personal Accident Cover and you may not even be able to include it as an optional extra. If you’re risk-averse, carefully consider the right level of cover for you.
A few other conditions as standard to be aware of are:
- The age restrictions on your policy – some companies may not provide cover for the elderly.
- You may only be covered for driving in the UK, and not in other countries.
- Many standard policies will only cover for up to £10,000 for serious injuries or death. If you want greater cover then you should filter this as imperative when you compare car insurance quotes.
Make sure you always ask yourself: who is covered? Where am I covered? What am I covered for? If you’re risk-averse, carefully consider the right level of insurance for you.
Can I invalidate my personal accident cover?
Yes, quite possibly - be sure to read the fine print as there’s certainly a few general conditions. Your personal injury cover will become invalidated if you’re driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or if you don’t wear a seatbelt. This is no surprise and is like any other insurance policy.
Likewise, you won’t be able to claim if you’re driving without a valid licence. We don’t just mean expiration or vehicle type, but also your address. This one’s more of a warning to Generation Rent who may be moving addresses frequently – your licence becomes invalid if it doesn’t match what’s on your policy and as you must always tell your provider of any changes. You also won’t be covered if you’re taking part in extreme sports such as race-car driving or rally-driving.
Lastly, you’ll also invalidate your cover if you intend to cause an accident or inflict harm on yourself or another.
How much does personal accident cover cost?
When comparing car insurance policies, you’ll see that how much cover you’re offered as standard will vary. If you’d like a greater cover, not just for you but also perhaps for your family, then you may want to shop around for additional personal accident cover.
Ordinarily, it costs about £30 per year as an extra which, we have to say, is a fairly modest price if it’s not included in your policy. Plus, you have the option to purchase additional levels of cover dependent on your personal preference and circumstances. As an example, a self-employed parent who works in a physically-dependant job may seek a higher level of personal injury cover due to the higher risk in the event of an accident.
If you take out personal injury cover, your medical expense limits are much higher. We’re exceptionally fortunate in the UK to have the NHS, meaning we don’t face the same difficulties surrounding medical bills as, for example, our American counterparts. However, we’re all familiar with long waiting lists and referral processes, which can impact on our personal lives both mentally and physically. Having medical expenses covered to a higher limit is advantageous in seeking private support for both physical injuries and mental impact.
Remember, the insurance claim will go to the provider of the at-fault driver in the accident. So just be aware, as many companies can take different lengths of times to process claims which we understand can be frustrating, especially when your health is at stake. Using our car insurance comparison tool for personal accident cover will smooth the search process and can give you the best cover for the best cost.