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Why am I having to provide so much information to get my car insured?

I went online like every year to insure my classic Saab convertible and the cheapest quote was 50 per cent more than last year for no clear reason. The car is on a 5000 mileage limit and is little used. Having completed all details online I was then asked to repeat all the answers and more in a 38-minute phone call. Now I am being asked to send them photocopies of driving licences for myself and a named driver, DVLA codes to prove no points and a copy of all four pages of the V5C. I have never been asked for any of this before by any insurer. They blame fraud but surely dishonest answers invalidate the policy anyway so why bother with all this hassle? Has fraud suddenly got out of hand or are they a bit paranoid?

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They have to ask it, it is the law, simple as that. They have a legal duty under the 2015 insurance act to make sure the policy is fit for your "demands and needs". They also take a lot more precautions to fight against fraud than they used to. What you have experienced is now fairly normal.
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