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100,000 parents currently ‘fronting’ their children’s motor insurance

28th September 2015

  • One in ten parents of young drivers admit to car insurance fronting at some point

New research from The Co-operative Insurance reveals that around one hundred thousand parents are currently ‘fronting’ motor insurance for their offspring.
 
One in ten of parents of young drivers in the UK currently aged 17-25 have admitted to fronting their son’s and daughter’s motor insurance policy at some point, for an average time of two years (2.3). Of those that have admitted to fronting, over a third at 99.6k (37%) of parents are currently fronting their child’s motor insurance*.
 
According to the DVLA**, there are currently 2.9m drivers aged 17-25 on the roads with either a full or provisional driving licence.
 
‘Fronting’ is a type of insurance fraud whereby parents say that they are the main driver of a car when, in reality, most or all of the driving is done by their child. Whilst well meaning, 62% of parents are fronting to save their children money, the implications of fronting can be serious and in some cases it could make it extremely difficult for drivers to obtain insurance later if they are found to have fronted.
 
73% of those parents fronting have children with full driving licenses, though figures show that over a quarter (27%) of parents are fronting insurance for their children who only have provisional driving licenses.
 
New drivers can have their licence revoked if they gain more than 6 points on their driving licence within two years of passing their test and, whilst well meaning, parents could be unwittingly putting their children at risk of this as in the worst case scenario they could be found to be driving without insurance - which comes with a maximum penalty of 6 points***.
 
The findings have revealed that parents are willing to ‘front’, despite the fact that the majority (81%) are aware that it is illegal. Though, despite this, 94% of parents believe they would be covered if they had to claim on their motor insurance.
 
Dads are more relaxed than Mums when it comes to fronting motor insurance with 10% of Dads willing to admit to it in comparison to 8% of Mums. More parents of children aged 17-19 are fronting than any other, followed by parents of 20-22 year olds then 23-25 year olds.
 
More parents in the North East are fronting in the UK than any other region:

Regions where parents are currently fronting
1 North East
2 Yorkshire
3 South East
4 West Midlands
5 London
6 North West
Northern Ireland
7 East Midlands
8 East Anglia
9 Wales
10 South West

Over one in ten (14%) of parents who have/are fronting saying that they would front again in future and, on average, parents believe they have saved £299 through motor insurance fronting.
 
Nearly a quarter (24%) of parents say that they know someone who fronted motor insurance. They believe they know two other people who have fronted.
 
Steve Kerrigan, Head of Telematics at The Co-operative Insurance, said: “These findings show that fronting continues to be an issue for both consumers and the insurance industry.
 
“Whilst many parents think that they are doing their children a favour by fronting insurance for them, in reality the consequences of doing this could be serious and costly if, for example, they need to make a claim. When it comes to provisional drivers what seems to be a harmless act could even lead to a loss of licence."
 
"Insurers such as ourselves are increasingly pricing car insurance based on the riskiest drivers rather than who is presented as the main driver in an effort to combat the impact of fronting."

“Likewise, young drivers can utilise telematics policies to help keep the cost of their insurance down as these price on how the young person drives, rather than looking simply at their age as a risk rating.”

Ends

Note to editors

*As of May 2015 there were 1,214,613 drivers aged 17-25 with provisional licenses and 1,721,051 with full driving licenses. Total: 2,935,664.
9.3% parent admit to fronting (of 2.9m): 273k
Of these 36.5% are fronting at present (of 273k): 99.6k
**Based on data supplied in FOI request by DVLA – May 2015
***https://www.gov.uk/vehicle-insurance/driving-without-insurance

https://www.gov.uk/penalty-points-endorsements/new-drivers

About The Co-operative Young Driver Insurance

The Co-operative’s Smartbox works like a Sat Nav or GPS to record driving style, rewarding safe young drivers with a discount every 90 days. It uses data collected from four different driving parameters, including average speed, acceleration or braking, the time of day the car is driven and how fast corners are taken.  
An added bonus of having the SmartBox installed is the useful tracking device meaning stolen cars can be recovered.
 
An online dashboard, which can also be accessed via a smart app, keeps track of the driving score and performance, enables access to the policy documents 24/7, and provides helpful tips to improve driving.

For further information please contact

Jenna Moss
Press & Media Relations Manager – The Co-operative Group
Tel: 0161 767 4354 / 07540 641368
Email: jenna.moss@co-operative.coop

About The Co-operative Group

The Co-operative Group, one of the world’s largest consumer co-operatives, with interests across food, funerals, insurance, electrical and legal services, has a clear purpose of championing a better way of doing business for you and your communities. Owned by millions of UK consumers, The Co-operative Group operates a total of 3,750 outlets, with more than 70,000 employees and an annual turnover of approximately £10 billion.