November 28, 2016

Buyers of motor insurance stuck for something to splash out on in anticipation of the £40 windfall they’re in line for once HMG’s new improved restrictions on lawyers helping little people comes into force, might want to consider putting a little aside to cover the additional 2% they’ll be paying for their motor insurance following Chancer Phil “The Organ” Hammond’s decision to increase Insane Punishment Tax from 10% to 12% from June next year.

The total impact of IPT on the average comprehensive motor premium now stands at around £50. In other words, that 100%-bankable £40 saving from outlawing whiplash claims will pay for – not just the additional eight or nine pounds to which the government is helping itself this time – but also up to 80% of the total cost of IPT on your average motor policy. So basically, you’re quids – if not exactly in – then only slightly out!

At the present rate of increase, however, IPT is set to rise to a not inconsiderable 24% by summer 2019, at which point you may be looking to Government to take even stronger measures to prevent other people – people, let’s say, who are not quite as decent, honest and hardworking as you are – from claiming anything at all on their motor insurance policies – so that motor insurance premiums can come down again.

Now, clearly, the government has to find money from somewhere, and clearly IPT is a pretty nifty idea (a sort of a VAT for insurance that no-one can ever claim back), and clearly if we’re ever going afford to leave the EU and keep all those foreigners out, the money’s got to come from somewhere. But should government really be penalising people whose only crime is driving around a bit in a metal thing with wheels and an engine – and wanting to do so in a legal and indemnified fashion?

Obviously it shouldn’t! Among the first to make this important point were various insurance firms, who came out en masse this week to insist that if anyone is going to be taking money off motor insurance buyers it should be them and not the government.

Leading insurance related fashion house BIBA was swift to add its own unique voice to anti-IPT vituperation. “It’s a ruddy scandal,” said BIBA top dog Steve Wipe in Bankstone News’ recent sock-puppet pre-Christmas pantomime. “This regressive tax is outrageous,” said the real Steve Wipe or someone speaking on his behalf, which, like Mr Punch in some other puppet show, will “hit everyone and especially those ‘just about managing’”

Meanwhile telematics touts Insure My Box made a play for the yoof vote, claiming that young drivers will be paying around £150 a year in IPT on an average premium of £1,250 per annum. At this rate, JAMs and recently qualified drivers could soon find themselves priced off the road – or worse still, threatens Insure My Box’s Charley Hackett, tempted to “take the risk of driving whilst uninsured”.

It hardly seems likely they’d go that far. Not when they’d be risking a first-offence penalty of £300 just for the sake of saving themselves just a couple of thousand quid!

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