Concern over motor insurance denied to elderly

Around half of all motor insurance providers have a policy of denying quotes to drivers over the age of 80, a study has found.

Research into age discrimination in the insurance industry carried out by Age Concern and Help the Aged found that around one in two insurers, including some of the biggest names on the UK market, will automatically bar drivers in this age group from taking out cover, regardless of their health.

Furthermore, those companies that do offer car insurance for elderly drivers routinely charge “over the odds” for cover, the study also found, despite the fact that such a policy would appear to be against existing laws covering discrimination.

Commenting, Andrew Harrop, head of public policy at Age Concern and Help the Aged, said: “Continuing to discriminate against our ageing population is not only bad for older people, it is bad for business.”

At the same time, however, a new report from the Government Equalities Office has recommended that insurance firms be allowed to continue to impose upper age limits for cover.

Meanwhile, the AA has reported that car insurance premiums rose in cost by seven per cent over the final quarter of 2009.

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