EU car Insurance green cards set to be scrapped for UK drivers

Published 02 July 2021

UK drivers will no longer have to get a green card, a document that proves a motorist has third-party insurance, to take their car to EU countries.

The European Commission (EC) announced its plans to scrap the Brexit-related insurance, meaning drivers are still part of the free circulation zone and don't need to purchase any added cover. The green cards typically last for up to 90 days.

The decision was made following rising tensions around the Northern Ireland protocol in which Northern Irish drivers needed to carry a green card when visiting the Republic of Ireland.

Drivers would have had to carry a green card as there may be checks at borders in some countries. Without one, motorists would have to be covered by third-party insurance bought in the country they are driving in, or else face fines from the local authorities.

While the EC recently confirmed it’s ditching the scheme, the rules haven't come into force yet - meaning anyone taking their car to European countries will still need to get a green card from their insurer before they head off.

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This includes the Republic of Ireland, all other EU countries and non-EU countries such as Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland, Serbia and Andorra.

The rule change will only come into effect 20 days after it is published in the Official Journal, a step which should take place in the next few days, according to The Guardian.

Huw Evans, Director General at the Association of British Insurers said: “This is excellent news. We have long campaigned for the UK to be part of the Green Card Free Circulation Zone so we warmly welcome the decision by the European Commission today. The Commission has taken a pragmatic approach on the matter.

“UK drivers will no longer need to apply for a green card through their insurer which will help reduce bureaucracy for drivers and road hauliers travelling between the UK and EU. It will be especially welcomed by motorists in Northern Ireland driving across the border to the Republic of Ireland.”


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