Tuesday 22 February 2011

European hearing expected to result in increased premiums for female drivers, Good Garage Scheme hears.

Next month could see a harsh increase in insurance premiums for the youngest female drivers (aged between seventeen and twenty-two) as a consequence of a European Court of Justice hearing which is expected to outlaw gender discrimination.

Currently, the UK’s female motorists pay lower premiums because they are deemed to be a lower risk for insurers, based upon statistical evidence. Figures show young men are ten times more likely than women of the same age to be involved in a crash and twenty five times likely to commit a traffic offence in their first three years of motoring.

Simon Douglas, director of AA Insurance, said: "The use of gender in calculating insurance risk has been a thorn in the EC's side for many years and indeed, the current UK use of gender in this way is illegal. However, my fear is that the European Court of Justice will no longer tolerate such exceptions and the UK and some other EC countries that use gender to calculate risk, will have to toe the European line.”

At present the average difference in premiums can be as much as £1,000 more for males, with men and women paying averages of £2,750 and £1,682 respectively. The move could reduce premiums slightly for males in addition to the anticipated increases for females.

However, more mature female motorists, while still being affected to some degree, are anticipated to feel a much lesser increase as insurance premiums difference reduce with age.

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