With the cost of car insurance rising exponentially year on year, a decent no claims bonus can help make car insurance more affordable. Here's what you need to know about no claims bonus explained.
A no claims bonus is a reward, usually in the form of a discount on your premiums, for not claiming on your insurance during your policy year.
Each year you’re insured and don’t make a claim, you’ll earn an extra year’s worth of no claim’s discount which can make a big difference to your car insurance premiums over time.
You'll earn a no claims bonus regarless of whether you have fully comprehensive car insurance or basic third party, fire and theft cover.
The longer you’ve been insured without making a claim, the greater your no claims bonus will be and the bigger the discount you're likely to be eligible for.
A no claims bonus will last for as long as you don’t make a claim on your insurance policy. It'll also increase for every year that you don't make a claim.
As soon as you make a claim you’ll lose your no claims bonus, unless it was protected in some way (more on that later). Once this happens you'll need to start building your no claims history afresh.
It's worth mentioning that not all claims will result in you losing your no claims discount - having cracks in your windscreen filled, for instance, doesn't usually count.
The easiest way to prove your no claims entitlement is to use your car insurance renewal quote.
Each year, usually about a month before your insurance is due for renewal, you insurance company will write to you with a renewal quote.
This quote will detail the length of your no claims bonus and can be used to show other insures how long you’ve been insured without making a claim.
If you don't have a renewal quote which specifies you no claims entitlement, then you should be able to write to your previous insurer for written proof of your no claims. They'll generally send you a no claims bonus certificate that you can use as evidence of your claim free driving history.
Yes, your insurance company will usually ask to see proof of your no claims bonus before a discount is added to your policy. At the least they'll ask for details of your previous insurer and policy number so they can check direct with them.
If you apply for an insurance policy stating you’ hae a certain level of no claims and can’t prove this you’ll end up paying the full price, and may even be charged for giving false information, find that your insurer won't pay out if you need to claim or be reported for fraud.
A protected no claims bonus is where you pay a small amount on top of your premium to keep your existing no claims discount even if you have to make a claim.
However, most protected no claims bonuses will only allow you to make one or two claims per year without forfeiting your discount.
This really depends on your circumstances. Paying to protect your no claims bonus will mean you save less money on your insurance premiums as you usually need to pay for it as an extra.
However with discounts of up to 70% available, losing your many years of no claims could be very costly should you need to make a claim.
Ultimately whether you pay to protect your no claims bonus will depend on how many years' you’ve already accrued and whether you feel the extra cost is worth paying.
For more information and help deciding, read our guide: Should I Protect My No Claims Discount?
You can't usually build a no claims discount on two cars simultaneously. However, this is theoretically possible if the cars are insured on the same policy, or if the insurer extends your no claims discount to a second car after a set period of time has passed.
You'll sometimes be able to transfer a no claims bonus on a company car to your personal car insurance policy too.
This will depend on your car insurance policy. In most cases named drivers will not accrue a named driver no claims bonus as this discount is reserved for the main policy holder.
However, some car insurance policies have begun extending no claims discounts to named drivers, although they may not be accepted by other insurers.
Yes, in most cases you will lose your no claims discount if you need to make a claim on your car insurance although you may be able to keep your no claims discount if you have paid to protect it.
This depends entirely on your car insurance policy. Some insurers will protect your no claims discount if you're hit by an unisured driver but most don't.
This means that if you need to make a claim to cover damage caused by an unisured driver then you could lose your no claims if it isn't protected.
Repairing small chips or cracks shouldn't affect your no claims discount if you used an approved windscreen repair service.
However, if your windscreen is badly damaged and needs replacing then this won't be classed as car maintainance but as a standard claim, meaning you may lose your existing no claims discount if you pay for it through your insurance.
This will depend on whether your insurance provider can reclaim your costs from the other driver involved in the accident.
If the other party accept liablility and their insurance will pay to cover your repair work then your insurance will be unaffected and your no claims will stay in place.
However, if you need to put the claim through your insurance your no claims discount could be affected.
Again this will depend on your car insurance policy but in most cases you will lose your no claims discount if you need to claim for an accident while a named driver is behind the wheel.
If you are a named driver insured on a policy that allows you to build up a no claims discount your no claims history could be affected if the main driver needs to make a claim.
A no claims bonus doesn’t usually have an expiry date. However if you take a break from driving and don’t have any insurance for several months you may find it more difficult to use your existing no claims discounts when you need to renew.
While there is no set expiry date for your no claims, most insurers will only accept proof of your no claims discount if your previous policy expired less than 2 years ago.
Some insurers may only accept no claims for up to 12 months after your previous policy has ended while others allow up to 3 years, so make sure to shop around to check if you can use your no claims if you've had a gap without cover.
Can anyone help? I took out an insurance policy 15 days ago (so beyond the 14 cooling off period). I have just found out that my NCD is just slightly over the 2yr limit, therefore the insurer is probably not going to accept it. They have sent me a letter saying they will cancel the policy within another 14 days if I don't send them proof of NCD. If I explain the situation, are they likely to be willing to recalculate my premium based on no NCD? Will they just cancel my policy regardless? Will this make it difficult to get insurance in the future? Should I get in there first, cancel the policy, and live with the cancellation fees? It was an honest mistake as I didn't know about the two year cut-off, but I'd rather not be penalised for years to come, and I don't want to have some sort of black mark against me, because new insurers think I tried to commit fraud, without knowing the details...
I have been been driving a company car for three years and am now buying my own again, the insurance company have accepted the three years on a company car but won't except the 5 years previous no claims that I had on a previous private car which I have provided proof of, do you know if this is correct?
I have a similar problem to Kimway. Have two different NCDs - one for 9 years, one for just one year. The insurance Co is saying they'll only accept the 1 year, as its the most recent. Is that right? The 9 years is still within the 2 year "usable" period. Are there any rules relating to this?
Martin - can you explain why NCD cannot be used on more than one policy? Surely the proof is that you haven't made a claim, regardless of policy. This just seems like another money-making excuse by insurance companies to me.
Maybe it is time that the government took a tighter grip on the regulation of insurance policies which are a legal requirement? I can't think of anything else that is a legal requirement which is opened up to the free market to exploit!
I had over 20 years with churchill with no claims, I then worked in the USA for 3 years and used Progressive insurance Co there, so I was always insured and have always had a car, when I came back to Churchill they said that because I was out of the UK for 3 years and 7 days they would not honour my no claims despite being able to prove that I used progressive and never made any claims ever. they said I had to build my discounts from zero. I still find it hard to believe they treated me so badly, I have given them thousands of pounds over the years and never made a single claim.
Hi, im 29, I passed my test and got through my 1st year with no crash or claim, then during my second year my partner was named driver but he crashed my car into someone who claimed against us. direct line took the second year plus my first years no claims discount from me and now i'm back to square one again. Is this normal?
Hi...ive been insured for a year and just took out a policy with a new provider stating my one year no claim bonus. Having now requested my proof of no claims...my previous insurer is telling me that they do not give no claims bonus out under the terms and conditions of the specific policy. Can this be right? Apparently ive been given a cheaper rate but only due to the fact that i will not recieve a NCD. I want to complain about the fact that this wasnt mentioned more clearly to me. What can i do?
i own my own car for personal use which has my own insurance but i also have a works vehicle which is insured by the company i work for. A 4x4 took my drivers side mirror off my van earlier in the week and drove off. i managed to get the vehicles details and a witness details aswel. is it likely to effect my own personal insurance? as my transport office sent me a accident form to fill in which asks if im insured on a vehicle and the insurance details. why?
Hi, I have a problem with my insurer: In may 2012 someone hit my car (their fault). In July 2012 I had to renew my insurance policy. I had 7 years NCD, but insurer says, that I am loosing 5 years NCD until liability will be proved, so I had to pay twice as expencive premiums. Take few long months, until everything was confirmed - it wasn't my fault and third party paid for repair of my car, so I call my insurer for recalculate my premiums with my 7 years NCD, but they say, that they can't change my premiums now, I have to pay this high premiums till end of this years insurance (!?) Do they are right or just robbering me? Thanks for any info about this.
I was hit by a truck on the motorway which didn stop. my car was a cat c write off the accident was whitnessed by a traffic control guy but he didn get the reg of the other driver. no havins some one to claim against the insurance company says i lose two years no claims and now tyring to get new insurance a lot of the companys web sites say as there was no one to claim against then the accident is classed as my fault
I've had a policy with one company on a car for 11 months and 2 weeks. This car has now died and isn't worth repairing so I've just got a new one. I'd like to change companies to insure my new car as I've found a much cheaper quote. Will my renewal notice from my old insurer (which shows 1 year's NCD) be enough even though it's actually a couple of weeks short of 1 year?
Hi, I have 3 months left on my policy then i will have 2 years NCB. The question i have is:
If I cancel my policy early (end of April) can I still take the 1 year NCB i have in the bank (so to speak) with me to another company or will Admiral cancel all my NCB as i've cancelled the policy early?
Hi, lots of useful info here - thanks. I have my car insured with Churchill and have a protected 9 year ncb. Two years ago I bought my kids a small car and insured it with a different company with my kids as named drivers. My son was involved in an accident and a claim was made on the insurance. My ncb is protected on the Churchill policy but I also have a motorcycle which is insured with Bennets. They have just written to me referring to an 'undisclosed claim' and charging me an additional premium. Is it right to reduce my NBC and charge me more for an accident which had nothing to do with me and insured on a different policy? Ian W
my partner had a crash in oct 2012, we made no claim for our exspenses but since it was our fault a claim was made against my policy by the other driver. Sorry if this is a silly question but when filling in quotations for new car insurance now do I need to say yes to any claims made?
hi, Is there any other way of finding out who your last insurer was as its been well over a year and i was only insured with them for a few months and lost all details, I had 15 years NCB , stopped driving for a while whilst someone else did for me for work purposes but did get insured for a few months between that time, I need now to find the last insurer as its been less than 2 years since i have driven but cannot remember/find who that insurer was ?
Hi. As of May 2013 I am currently up to 4 years and 11 months on my NCD. I'm getting new car next week and would like to change to a different insurer.
If I switch insurance companies next week, would I need to stick with 4 years when entering my quotes, or could I use 5 years? Seems a shame to miss out on a years NCD for the sake of 2 weeks!
Hi I have a question about my NCB 0f 2 years for my car. I took out a policy last year for my car starting from may 2012 to april 2013. I had 2 years NCB which expired on 06/02/2011. When I took out new policy in may 2012 over the phone. The sales rep sad to me that they will only accept a NCB upto 2 years. I advised him that I have no idea if my CNB is over or under 2 years, so he organized my policy to set as the time i have had my license which is 9 years. He asked me to send him the NCB which I did and he also confirmed me to over the phone that even though i will be paying higher insurance for the whole year but at the end of the policy I will get 3 year NCB regardless, which I was happy with. Now the policy has ended and they are only giving me 1 year NCB. Please could someone help me with this as I am copying the email below they sent me?? Thanks in advance
Thank you for your recent email.
As advised at the inception of the policy we were advised that you did not have any No Claims Bonus free to use on this policy, we based this policy on 2 years driving history earned on a second policy with Yes Insurance.
As you have earned 1 years No Claims Bonus whilst insured with ourselves the No Claims Bonus documentation you e received is correct.
Please do not hesitate to contact us should you have any queries.
I might have a bit more complicated question, story....10 months ago I took out insurance policy through high street insurance agent, paid £150 for the service, although managed to secure good deal, thought at that time. After 10 months got a letter my insurer stating that my policy is void due to non genuine ncb, problem is I did not send anything through....ever. Tried to explain that insurance was dealt through agent, they still did not take that onboard. Talked with this agent, he apologised and promised to resolve issue. After three weeks and no respond from him or my insurer. I took things in my own hands, checked FSA register agent does not come on the list, rang my insurer and they said they never use brookers as they are direct insurance conmpany. I already been listed on insurance database and I am not able to take another insurance. I have another car, which is due for renewal in 1.5 month ,probably will not get cover for it, shall I try explain this situation with other car insurer.
My next steps are to write a letter to the insurer , which void my policy explain again on paper and not on the phone, contact FSA. Do not understand why my insurer never contacted me about any issue and just void my policy without giving me any chance to explain situation - how come they did not contact me or void policy earlier...
I have contact details of the agent, shall contact Police about it? I need to act quick as from my understanding void policy is treated as I commited fraud....I am very stressed about whole situation never had any problems with law etc.
Thank You. Peter.
I recently transferred from 1 insurance company to another and had 8 years NCB when switching (proof of NCB was requested and sent to the new provider). I have had to make a claim on my policy and have been informed that my NCB will drop to 3 years as they only offer discount to a maximum of 5 years. This will obviously push my premiums up substantially next year but my question is if I move to another provider at renewal can I prove I have 6 years NCB instead of 3?