22 December 2000

UNABLE TO DRIVE? THIS COULD HELP

INJURY or disqualification from driving could seriously increase the costs of running a farm business, but this too can be insured against.

There are five levels of cover available through Longford Insurance Schemes, originally founded as a mutual club to provide members with financial cover in the event that they were unable to drive.

Its specialist mobility insurance scheme, Chauffeurplan, pays a cash sum to keep policyholders on the road if they are unable to drive through theft, vandalism, car accident, disqualification or injury.

While Chauffeurplan does not cover disqualification as a direct result of dangerous, careless, reckless or inconsiderate driving, or for drink or drug related offences, it does cover speeding disqualifications and those imposed as a result of the totting up rule.

To be eligible for cover, drivers must be over 25 and hold a full UK driving licence. They must also have fewer than seven penalty points on their driving licence.

Penalty points

Those with seven or more penalty points can be covered, but would not be eligible for disqualification benefits until their points drop to seven or fewer, when this benefit would automatically be restored.

Travel costs of up to £15,600/year are included in the benefits, which could help with the cost of hiring a replacement driver for farm machinery if the policyholder is injured and unable to carry out this work. Car hire, emergency travel and accommodation for the policyholder and family if they are stranded away from home is also part of the package and applies throughout Europe.

The main exclusions are mechanical breakdown or failure, medical conditions and the disqualifications already covered.

Chauffeurplan cover costs between £50 and £275/year, depending on what level of protection is taken. There is a 50% discount for spouses and partners and businesses can claim premiums as a direct expense for tax purposes.

Chauffeurplan pays a cash sum to keep policy holders mobile if they are unable to drive.