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   Rehabilitation of Offenders Act and Car Insurance

Car Insurance and the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act

In 1975 The rehabilitation of offenders Act came into force following Lord Gardiner's report, which stated that a million people in the United Kingdom had a criminal record. This Act set out to protect reformed characters by wiping off criminal convictions after several conviction free years. This Act has changed the way insurance companies look at convicted drivers.

Convicted Drivers

Some car insurance companies offer driving insurance for convicted drivers within the United Kingdom. Lots of insurers still look at convictions, as a serious problem but under the law, spent convictions cannot be taken into account. It is the duty of the insured person to honestly disclose all convictions that are not spent.

Rehabilitation of Offenders Act

The 1974 Rehabilitation of Offenders Act enables some criminal convictions to become 'spent' or ignored, after a period of 'rehabilitation'.

Sentences Handed out for Car Offences

The rehabilitation period for some convicted drivers depends on the original sentence given, not the offence that was committed. For a custodial sentence the rehabilitation period is decided on the original sentence given, not the time spent. To all convicted drivers, it takes account of motoring offences and therefore affects the handling of driving insurance. The general public understands very little about this so it is important to establish the facts. This will avoid repudiation of claims or re-quotes after a non-disclosure. An endorsement on your driving licence, does not fall within the definition of the act so cannot affect the rehabilitation period. It is unlikely that a person would receive penalty points without a fine, disqualification or a prison sentence.

If a person was caught speeding and was given three penalty points and a £50 fine in this case it is the fine of £50 that would result in a 5-year rehabilitation period, not the endorsement.

Insurance and Drink Driving

This also applies to drink driving offences. The licence is endorsed for eleven years; but, any rehabilitation period is determined by the punishment (fine, disqualification or imprisonment). Disqualification relating to driving insurance for convicted drivers in United Kingdom. If a person is disqualified from driving or being a company director at the same time as receiving another penalty, the longer rehabilitation period applies.

If a person is banned for seven years and fined - which takes five years to become spent - the rehabilitation period would be seven years not five years.



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