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What happens if the other driver is uninsured or untraced?

Claims brought against an uninsured third party

If you’ve been involved in an accident and the other driver does not hold a valid policy of insurance, you are still able to pursue a personal injury claim. Whether you’re claiming for a motorcycle accident or a car accident, the case will be brought against the Motor Insurers’ Bureau.

The Motor Insurers’ Bureau is a company funded by all UK motor insurers through policy premiums. If the other driver is uninsured, we will present your claim to the organisation who will act as the defendant insurance company under the Uninsured Driver’s Agreement.

We treat the Motor Insurers’ Bureau as if they’re the insurance company and we simply claim against them, rather than the third party’s insurer. The only difference is the claim runs through different processes, so you’ll have to fill out different applications which can sometimes take slightly longer, as the Motor Insurers’ Bureau do try to pin down the third party driver.

There are a few things you can also do to help your claim progress if the driver doesn’t have insurance. Be sure to get as many details from them as possible; this includes their name and address, the registration number, make and model of their vehicle and any damage caused. If the other driver refuses to cooperate, you should file a complaint with the police, as refusal to give insurance information is a criminal offence.

Claims brought against an untraced third party

If you’re involved in an accident and it is not possible to either trace or positively identify the driver responsible, you are still able to make an application for compensation to the Motor Insurers’ Bureau. They are also administrators of the Untraced Drivers’ Agreement, which is intended to compensate people who have sustained loss or injury at the hands of an untraced or unidentified driver.

If the driver of the other vehicle doesn’t stop after your accident (hit and run), you should try and get their vehicle registration or, if possible, take a photo of the vehicle. If there were any witnesses to the incident, ask them for their full contact details as they may be able to assist the police with any investigation they pursue during the case.

Stephanie Jackson, Team Leader in Fast Track operations at Minster Law, said: “The circumstances of all accidents are different and it can be daunting to know what steps to take in the event that the responsible party isn’t insured or is untraced.

“It’s important to seek advice from a professional such as a personal injury solicitor or claims handler to discuss what options are available when pursuing your personal injury claim. However, no matter if the driver is uninsured or untraced there are specific processes in place to help support you on your claims journey.”

Read more advice features from our specialist personal injury teams here.