Car insurance: What is 'fronting'?

Young happy driver in a new car.

Fronting is a type of fraud that can have serious implications on those who commit it – yet many people don’t even know that they’re guilty until it’s too late.

If you’re a new driver – or the parent of a new driver – considering ways to get the cheapest car insurance, it is crucial that you understand the definition of fronting, as well as the implications of having a named driver on your insurance.

What does fronting mean?

In relation to car insurance, fronting is when a high-risk driver (such as somebody who is young, or has recently passed their test) is made a named driver on the car insurance policy of a more experienced – and therefore lower risk – driver, when they are actually the ones who will be driving the vehicle the most.

For example, a man with 20+ years driving experience stating themselves as the main driver on a car insurance policy for a car which will be driven frequently by his 18-year-old daughter, who has recently passed her driving test, would be guilty of fronting.

But fronting makes car insurance for young drivers so much cheaper!

Yes, it does – and that is why so many people, particularly parents, are seduced into committing what is actually quite a serious crime.

Even if it is the more experienced driver who is stumping up the cost for the insurance, it is still against the law for them to be named as the main driver.

Can insurance companies prove fronting?

Yes, they can, so it isn’t worth the risk.

When making a claim in the case of an accident, insurers can investigate whether or not the collision occurred on a route that the main driver (who should really be a secondary driver) would take – such as to their place of work.

Insurers can also investigate the usage of other cars at the registered address and take statements from eye-witnesses, friends and just about anybody else who could disprove your story – not to mention CCTV, which would determine you guilty on the spot!

What are the consequences of car insurance fronting?

As mentioned previously, fronting = fraud. Fraud is a very serious allegation and could see your policy cancelled immediately, along with a trip to court, a hefty fine of up to £5,000 and 6 points on your licence.

The repercussions won’t stop there, though, as both the young and experienced driver will find it much harder to find car insurance in the future.

On top of all of that, fronting will also void any claims you make on your car insurance policy meaning that you could be left owing thousands out of your own pocket.

How to identify the main driver

If a vehicle is shared among 2 or more people, it can be difficult to identify exactly who is the ‘main’ driver.

As a rule of thumb, Bobatoo would suggest that the main driver is the person who:

  • Drives the car most regularly
  • Is responsible for the upkeep of the vehicle

The main driver of a vehicle does not have to be the same as the registered keeper, however, this usually tends to be the case.

It is regularly recommended that parents are added as named drivers on insurance policies for younger drivers in order to reduce insurance costs – and this is completely fine! Just don’t get it mixed up with fronting.

Adding your children to your car insurance policy

If your child will be driving your car on an infrequent basis, they can be legally added to your car insurance.

Getting insured on a parents’ car is certainly an option for young drivers, but there are still some drawbacks to consider, both for them and you! These include:

  • Your child won’t build up their no-claims bonus – with the exception of some insurance companies, your child will not build up a no-claims bonus as a named driver on your insurance.
  • Additional costs – adding a named driver – particularly a young, inexperienced one – to your insurance will undoubtedly see your premium rise.

How to get cheap car insurance for new drivers

You shouldn’t break the law to get cheaper car insurance and, luckily, you don’t have to break the bank, either!

There are a number of ways that you can decrease the costs of car insurance for young drivers.

Black box insurance

Also known as telematics insurance, black box insurance determines your premium on your quality of driving.

This means that, if you consider yourself a good driver, you could end up saving a fair whack on your car insurance policy.

If this has peaked your interest, then Bobatoo has come up with an extensive list of pros and cons to black box insurance to help you decide whether it is a viable option for your driving needs.

Short-term car insurance

This is particularly handy when taking out insurance on a car which isn’t your own, as you don’t have to pay to be covered for a whole year – in fact, you can be covered for as little as an hour with temporary car insurance!

Companies like Insure4ADay specialise in short-term car insurance - perfect for those who need access to a vehicle for a limited period of time – like when home from Uni for summer, or sharing a long-distance drive – and isn’t overly expensive.

Multicar insurance

Multicar insurance, as is provided by Admiral, can offer discounts on car insurance when a new car is registered to your address.

If you – or your child – has recently purchased a car, consider adding them to a MultiCar insurance policy with yourself and any other drivers at the address – the more drivers you add, the more money you can save.

Admiral also offer MultiCover, which will allow you to combine your home insurance with up to 7 car insurance policies, offering great discounts in the process!

Bobatoo works closely with some of the UK’s top insurance providers, putting together the very best deals so you don’t have to!

For a free, non-obligatory quote on your car insurance today, simply click or tap the green button below.

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Related articles:

Black box car insurance: The pros and cons

The best short-term car insurance in the UK

Young driver car insurance

Student car insurance

Tips and tricks for cutting costs on your car insurance