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Courtesy car - have to drive it every day!


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A friend's car is being fixed due to an accident that wasn't their fault.

 

They have been told by the garage fixing the car (referred to by the other party's insurer) that they cannot have a courtesy car unless they agree to drive it every day. Further that the car has a tracker that will check this.

 

Their own insurer has confirmed this.

 

I can't find any info about this by internet search. It seems bizarre and unenforceable to me.

 

The friend has been separately advised to simply hire a car from elsewhere that doesn't have this restriction. This sounds like reasonable advice.

 

So specifically I'm curious as to whether people have experienced the weird requirement.

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I'm sure we are all ears. Extraordinary!.

 

Please can you try to find out more. It's just too incredible. Which is the insurer? Is it written somewhere? And why?

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Never heard off this before!!

 

Totally bizarre indeed....

 

Not everyone with a car, will want to drive every day as a matter of fact. It's entirely their choice....

 

So to be told, they must drive every day & that they will be checking via the tracker is to entirely preposterous!!

 

If that's what he has to do, can he get around it by moving the car up & down his road a few times? As at least that way he has drove the car!!

I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every single minute of it!!

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Is your friend interested in talking to the press?

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I suspect it is purely to do with the fact it is a courtesy car, of which there are a limited number available. They probably say this, to avoid people taking a car that they don't need. So they say it is an Insurance requirement that the car is used.

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I now have a BBC radio enquiry about this. Please do see if your friend would like to make contact. He/She can contact me on our admin email address with "courtesy car" in the subj. line.

Ta

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I would lay very good money that it's actually a Credit Hire car that was not "referred by the other Insurer" but is ultimately going to be paid by the other Insurer.

 

The you need to drive it every day is sometimes quoted by Credit Hire companies when a customer tells them they don't really need a replacement car as they don't use it much or will just use their other car etc. The CH companies tell these customers (Who probably don't need a replacement car) that they need to drive the car every day so it comes back with reasonable mileage on it.

 

It can be difficult to explain to the other parties Insurer when they're presented with a bill for £3k+ when the car has only done 15 miles in two weeks and the costs could have been mitigated by using a taxi or even a chauffeur driven rolls royce...

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I would lay very good money that it's actually a Credit Hire car that was not "referred by the other Insurer" but is ultimately going to be paid by the other Insurer.

 

The you need to drive it every day is sometimes quoted by Credit Hire companies when a customer tells them they don't really need a replacement car as they don't use it much or will just use their other car etc. The CH companies tell these customers (Who probably don't need a replacement car) that they need to drive the car every day so it comes back with reasonable mileage on it.

 

It can be difficult to explain to the other parties Insurer when they're presented with a bill for £3k+ when the car has only done 15 miles in two weeks and the costs could have been mitigated by using a taxi or even a chauffeur driven rolls royce...

 

My money is also on the fact that this is a credit hire car and not a courtesy car. The OP needs to clarify this ASAP otherwise they could be left with a hefty bill to pay if a credit hire vehicle was signed for when there was no real need to have one because they had access to another car etc.

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My money is also on the fact that this is a credit hire car and not a courtesy car. The OP needs to clarify this ASAP otherwise they could be left with a hefty bill to pay if a credit hire vehicle was signed for when there was no real need to have one because they had access to another car etc.

 

I'd be surprised if a Credit Hire company fitted a tracker to their vehicles to check the cars are used every day, this sounds like another piece of B.S they've been told by the CH company or whoever referred them (And received £400 commission) to the credit hire company which I guess is either their own insurer or the garage

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I guess they only told the OP to drive the car every day so that the other side's insurer won't raise the issue of need.

 

I'm also very skeptical that any tracker is fitted.

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My friend has clarified that it is indeed the company providing the car rather than the garage.

 

The OP needs to clarify this ASAP otherwise they could be left with a hefty bill to pay if a credit hire vehicle was signed for when there was no real need to have one because they had access to another car etc.

 

Interesting point. Leaving aside my friend's situation who defines "real need"?

 

One person has a real need to get to work every day.

Another has a real need to get to work once a week (say, if they are part of a car-sharing agreement where the sharers' hours don't always match up).

 

I also don't see how such a requirement could be enforced since if you breach the agreement the company has not lost anything. But the insurance business seems to be a great area for inventing "legal" scams.

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Is it a credit hire agreement though? It's a very important distinction as your friend is personally liable for the hire invoice if it is, not the garage or insurance company etc.

 

Need is what's reasonable and there is extensive case law on credit hire agreements.

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My friend has clarified that it is indeed the company providing the car rather than the garage.

 

 

 

Interesting point. Leaving aside my friend's situation who defines "real need"?

 

One person has a real need to get to work every day.

Another has a real need to get to work once a week (say, if they are part of a car-sharing agreement where the sharers' hours don't always match up).

 

I also don't see how such a requirement could be enforced since if you breach the agreement the company has not lost anything. But the insurance business seems to be a great area for inventing "legal" scams.

 

Courts require a claimant eg your friend to mitigate their losses, when the credit hire company request the hire car charges from the other side, they will be asking for a daily hire rate well in excess of the normal hire cost for the type of car he has. Your friend (The CH company acting on his behalf) will have to demonstrate that hiring a credit hire car at well over the normal hire rate was reasonable and was needed by him. It may be that if he only uses the car five times in thirty days that a court would deem it inappropriate that he was in a hire car for all of those days. It may decide he could have just hired it for the five days he used it or even used taxis. It's not an exact science and a court will look at each case individually should the matter go to court.

 

If he is in a credit hire car, your friend will have signed to say that he will assist the CH company should the matter go to court, this could include appearing as a witness and / or providing copies of his bank statements to show he could not have financed the cost of a normally priced hire car himself. He will also have signed to say that he needs a credit hire car eg it's essential for him.

 

It's highly unlikely but if it went to court and the judge asked your friend about the car and he lied about using the car more than he had or he invented reasons to use the car that he lied to the court about and the judge discovered it, then this could possibly be deemed as perjury. As I said this is highly unlikely.

 

Incidently the company who passed him over to the credit hire company (Probably his Insurers or the garage) will have received about £400 commission for it.

 

What sort of car is he in as we can look the likely costs up, you will be very shocked when you see how expensive it is per day, repairs when there is a credit hire car strangely seem to always take a lot longer to be repaired so the credit hire costs mount up. The cost for say a 5 series BMW for thirty days on credit hire would be over £9000, the same car from a normal car hire company paid for by your friend would be under £3000.

 

As you can see from the money involved there's an incentive for the credit hire company to pull a fast one by telling him he has to drive the car every day, there's also an incentive from the Insurer of the person who hit you to dispute the costs and tell them see you in court (They tend to be settled before court).

 

P.S The [problem] is not really by the Insurance industry, the cost of inflated credit hire vehicles is ultimately shared out amongst all policyholders, the cost is circa £40 each, so your own premium is loaded by about £40 to pay towards credit hire vehicles

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All interesting stuff.

 

In this case, just to be clear, the car is being repaired in a garage referred to by the fault-driver's insurer and not my friend's insurer.

 

It would seem odd if the garage is inflating its customer's costs by referring to an expensive credit hire company. So the initial assumption I had was that the requirement was designed to put my friend off taking the car.

 

I wonder if the same requirement would be put if the cost were to be paid by my friend's insurer?

 

Seems clear to me though that demonstrating that a car is driven every day does not demonstrate the need to drive a car. If one lives on the bus route to work one does not *need* a car but might use a car. If one lives in a town without public transport then a car might be needed even if in the end it is hardly used.

 

The friend is aware of this thread and appreciates the comments, but is a bit busy dealing with all the issues caused alongside work and family life!

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