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Motor Claims Inflation: Update

The motor claims landscape in the UK has been facing increasing challenges, and if you're a business owner with a fleet of vehicles, it's crucial to be aware of these changes.

Longer Repair Times

The aftermath of the pandemic has seen a surge in repair times for all vehicles. Commercial vehicles, in particular, are facing significant delays. A study highlighted that fleet vehicles in Northern Ireland are off-road for an average of 2.40 days, the longest in the UK, while the North West enjoys the shortest wait at 1.82 days.

Parts Shortage

The global crisis, including the war in Ukraine and China's pandemic lockdowns, has led to a severe shortage of parts, especially semiconductors. Although the situation is slowly improving, many fleet professionals still report issues with parts availability.

Legal Battles Abroad

In the US, Tesla faced lawsuits alleging monopolistic practices in maintenance and repair services, leading to increased prices and wait times. Some car manufacturers, in their bid to offset production losses during COVID-19, might be prioritising sales over repairs.

Space Crunch

The UK is grappling with a lack of capacity to repair the increasing number of vehicles. Commercial vehicles, due to their size, are particularly affected. Many repair shops are so overwhelmed that vehicles are often stored before they can be inspected.

Courtesy Car Shortage

Delays in repairs mean customers are holding onto courtesy cars for longer. With the rising costs of new vehicles, the era of guaranteed courtesy cars seems to be fading. Some insurers have even stopped providing courtesy cars altogether.

Rising Repair Costs

The scarcity of parts, wage inflation, and the complexity of modern vehicle parts have made repairs more expensive. Electric vehicles (EVs) introduce new challenges. They're often deemed total losses due to the high cost of battery replacements. Plus, there's still uncertainty on how to handle EV fires.

Impact on Insurance

These challenges are inflating third-party claims. The extended off-road times are leading to skyrocketing credit hire and repair costs.

What to Do in Case of an Accident

Given these challenges, it's vital to act promptly if an accident occurs:

  • Report Immediately: Inform your insurer about any accidents right away. Early reporting can lead to significant cost savings and faster claim processing.

  • Stay Updated: Monitor your claim's progress and notify your insurer of any undue delays or issues.

  • Choose the Right Partner: Ensure your insurance partner maintains high service standards, addresses any challenges promptly, and doesn't penalise you for issues beyond your control.

In these trying times, being informed and proactive can make all the difference for business owners navigating the complex world of motor claims.


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