BREXIT

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Posted on 25th January 2019 Tagged in Personal Lines Schemes Commercial Lines Regulation & Change
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BREXIT : An update on our approach

Naturally, the approaching Brexit deadline is raising questions about our services for motor and travel customers. We’re working behind the scenes to make sure the impact of the UK’s departure from the European Union on 29 March is kept to a bare minimum:

We have a dedicated Brexit working group

The team is identifying risks as the situation evolves. We are well-prepared for every scenario. Whatever happens in government, and however the details of our departure are confirmed, we are committed to making sure our customers are covered.

Where we are with Green Cards

We’re working on a solution that will enable you to obtain Green Cards for your customers. This solution will be in place by the end of February, giving you enough time to request one for your customers before 29 March. We’ll be in contact in the near future about how this is going to work. Green Cards are not currently necessary for driving in EU or EEA, so you do not need to request one from us yet.

We’ll still be here on the other side

We don’t foresee any scenario that would impact our ability to trade or meet our capacity requirements. We’ll continue to sell all of our products as at present within the UK.

 Helping you manage customer queries

 Ultimately, we’d like all of our plans to make life easier for Ageas customers and we recognise they’ll be looking to you for information about their policies. The ABI has already issued some generic guidance on its website, which may be useful at a high level.

 We’ve written an article for customers about driving in Europe after Brexit which you may find useful to share with them.

FAQs

These are some of the most common questions you’ve been asking us:

Will my customers be covered to drive in other EU member states and EEA after Brexit?

Yes. There’ll be no change to our motor insurance cover for countries in the EU and European Economic Arena (EEA). However, if your customer lives in the UK and plans to drive in the EU, EEA, Andorra, Serbia or Switzerland, then they’ll need a paper copy Green Card to prove that they’re insured.

What’s a Green Card?

Green Cards are a guarantee that third-party motor insurance cover (at least) is in place for the countries in which you’re driving with a UK insurance policy. Currently, this must be the physical document and not a digital version. Ageas’s standard Green Card doesn’t automatically cover countries outside the EU or EEA – and at the moment, Green Cards aren’t necessary for driving in the EU or EEA. This situation may change, after March 29.

If my customers need a Green Card in the future, what should I do?

We’re working on plans that will enable you to obtain a Green Card for your customers, and we’ll be updating this page with details by the end of February. This will give you enough time to arrange a Green Card for your customers before 29 March. 

If your customers are driving in Europe before 29 March, they will not need any further documentation (provided they have returned to the UK before 29 March).

If your customers will be driving in Europe after 29 March, and an agreement has not been made between the UK Government and the European Union, they’ll need a Green Card.

Will my customer’s UK driving licence be enough after 29 March?

No. Some countries may set an expectation that you’ll have an International Driving Permit (IDP). There are two types of IDP required by EU countries, each governed by a separate United Nations convention. An IDP costs £5.50 and is available from the Post Office – you can find out more about this on the Department for Transport website.

What do my travel customers need to consider?

It’s likely that the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) will cease to apply after 29 March without a withdrawal agreement in place. This won’t affect the level of cover that we provide to our customers, but will stop UK citizens from getting free or reduced cost healthcare in the EEA and Switzerland.

If the EHIC ceases to exist, your customers will have to pay the excess on any claim (this was previously waived if they used an EHIC card).

What exactly is an EHIC?

An EHIC gives customers access to the same state-provided healthcare that is available to a resident. It is free from the Department of Health. However, it is not a substitute for having travel insurance as it will not cover all medical costs, or the cost of emergency repatriation back to the UK. 

If the EHIC ceases to exist, your customers will have to pay the excess on any claim (this was previously waived if they used an EHIC card).

Are customers still covered if they need medical assistant while abroad?

There is no change to their existing insurance cover.

What documents will customers need to take when travelling?

Customers are advised to travel with their insurance documents and their insurer’s emergency medical assistance contact number so they get quick access to medical expertise and facilities.

What about cover for delays while travelling?

If your customer's travel insurance includes cover for delay, missed departure or travel disruption they may be covered for additional costs if their journey is delayed or cancelled. They should check their policy for full details of any cover that may apply. Customers should, of course, prepare for longer queues at Passport control and customs and allow additional time.

What about compensation from airlines and ATOL?

Your customers rights for compensation from thier airline will remain unchanged if their flight is delayed or cancelled.

If your customers have booked a package holiday, then ATOL (Air Travel Organiser’s Licence) cover will continue to mean that if the travel company fails and their holiday can no longer go ahead, they will be entitled to a refund if they are yet to travel - and hotel costs and flight costs to get home if they are already abroad.

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