Is My Car Insured?

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Wondering, is my car insured? Driving on public roads in the UK without car insurance is against the law.

It’s crucial to check your car’s insurance status before you start driving. Fortunately, verifying if your car is insured is straightforward.

You can quickly check this by using the Motor Insurance Database (MID). Continue reading to see our ultimate guide.

How do I Check if My Car is Insured?

Using the Motor Insurance Database

To determine if your car is insured, the most straightforward method is to utilise the Motor Insurance Database (MID).

This database serves as a comprehensive national register containing details of all vehicles insured in the UK. By entering your car’s registration number on the MID’s website, you can conduct a free search.


This search will provide a simple yes/no answer regarding the current, valid insurance status of your vehicle. However, it’s important to note that this search won’t reveal specific details about your insurance policy.

In some cases, the make and model of your car might also be displayed if this information has been furnished by your insurance provider.

Beware of Scam Calls

The Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB) has issued a warning to its customers about scam callers impersonating MIB representatives. These fraudulent callers may request your bank details.

If you encounter such a situation or suspect a scam call, you are advised to visit the MIB website’s help and advice page for guidance and support.

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What Documents Do I Need to Check My Car Insurance on the MID?

No Documents Required

Remarkably, to verify whether your car is listed on the Motor Insurance Database (MID), you don’t need any specific documents. The only information necessary is your car’s registration number. This allows you to use the askMID search tool, which is available for free.

What Documents Do I Need To Check My Car Insurance On The Mid

Declaration for Searching

When initiating a search on the MID, it’s crucial to make a declaration. You’ll need to confirm that the car you’re inquiring about is either registered, owned, or insured by you or your employer. This declaration is a necessary step to proceed with the verification process on the MID.

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How Do I Check Who My Car is Insured With?

Searching Your Email and Financial Statements

If you’ve verified on askMID that your car is indeed covered, but can’t recall the insurance provider, there are several methods to uncover this information:

  • Email Search: Look through your email inbox using the keywords ‘car insurance‘. This may reveal recent emails or a PDF certificate from an insurance provider related to your car.

  • Bank Statements: Examine your bank account or credit card statements for any payments made to an insurance provider. This could help you identify the company you’re insured with.

How Do I Check Who My Car Is Insured With

Using Comparison Websites

  • If you have previously used a comparison website like Comparoo for getting quotes, revisiting these quotes might help jog your memory about your insurance provider.

Data Subject Access Request

  • Another option is to submit a Data Subject Access Request to the MID. For this, you will need to provide copies of your ID to verify your identity and address. There might be a small fee involved, but this will enable you to obtain the name of your insurance provider.

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When Does My Car Insurance Run Out?

Understanding Automatic Renewal

Many car insurance policies automatically renew, ensuring continuous cover unless you decide to cancel your policy or your payments are interrupted.

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While this might seem convenient, especially if keeping track of your policy is challenging, it could result in paying more than necessary.

It’s prudent to compare car insurance quotes before your renewal date to ensure you’re getting the best value.

When Does My Car Insurance Run Out

Checking Your Insurance Expiry Date

There are several methods to find out when your car insurance expires:

  • Policy Documents: Your car insurance renewal date should be listed on your policy documents or car insurance certificate.

  • Contact Your Provider: If you’ve misplaced these documents, you can directly contact your insurance provider or log into your online insurance account for this information.

Renewal Notifications and Comparing Quotes

Your insurance provider will contact you prior to the renewal date to inform you about the auto-renewal or expiry of your policy.

This notification is an opportune moment to compare quotes from different providers to potentially find a more cost-effective policy for your next term.

Using Comparoo for Easy Comparison

If you use services like Comparoo, they can remind you when it’s time to review your car insurance and automatically search for better deals in advance.

Comparoo offers a comparison of over 110 car insurance products, facilitating a quick and comprehensive overview of available options tailored to your needs.

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What Happens if I Find Out My Car is Not Insured?

Immediate Need for Insurance

If you discover that your car is not insured, it is critical to get car insurance immediately. In the UK, driving without car insurance on any public road is an offence and can lead to serious repercussions.

What Happens If I Find Out My Car Is Not Insured

Penalties for Uninsured Driving

Driving a vehicle without insurance can result in severe penalties, including:

  • Fixed Penalty: You may be subject to a fixed penalty of £300 and receive six penalty points on your driver’s licence.

  • Vehicle Seizure: The police have the authority to seize, and in some instances, destroy your vehicle.

  • Court Penalties: If the case is escalated to court, you could face disqualification from driving and potentially receive an unlimited fine.

Ensuring Proper Insurance Cover

It’s important to note that even if the car itself has insurance, you must be specifically insured to drive it to avoid penalties.

For instance, if you’re driving a car that isn’t yours, you should either be added as a named driver on the policyholder’s insurance or consider taking out temporary car insurance. This ensures that you are legally covered to drive the vehicle.

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Can You Ever Drive Without Car Insurance?

The Continuous Insurance Enforcement Scheme

Under the Continuous Insurance Enforcement (CIE) scheme, it’s mandatory for your car to be insured at all times, unless it is officially declared as off the road with a Statutory Off Road Notification (SORN).

As the registered owner of a vehicle, it’s crucial to understand that you could be held liable if the car is not insured, regardless of who is driving it.

Can You Ever Drive Without Car Insurance

Exceptions to the Insurance Requirement

There are limited circumstances where car insurance is not required, but these only apply when the car is not being driven. You won’t need car insurance in the following situations:

  • Car Between Registered Keepers: When a car is in the process of changing ownership, you are not responsible for insuring it. However, as soon as you become the registered keeper, it’s your responsibility to ensure the car is properly insured.

  • Car Written Off, Scrapped, or Stolen: In cases where your car has been written off, scrapped, or stolen, there’s no need for insurance. However, you must inform the DVLA and your insurance provider about the situation as soon as possible.


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Can I Check if Someone Else’s Car is Insured?

Checking a Car You’re Permitted to Drive

If you have permission to drive a car, you can check its insurance status using the askMID service, even if you’re not the registered owner. This service allows you to verify whether the car is insured.

Can I Check If Someone Else’s Car Is Insured

Using askMID for Third-Party Vehicles

For checking the insurance status of someone else’s car, you can use a different search tool on the askMID website. This is applicable under specific conditions:

  • The car must have been involved in an accident in which you were a participant.
  • You are representing someone involved in the incident.
  • There is a £10 fee for using this service.

Required Details for Checking Insurance

To find out if a car involved in an incident is insured, you’ll need to provide certain details:

  • Your Name and Email Address: Essential for identification and communication purposes.
  • Your Involvement in the Incident: Clarify whether you were driving, cycling, a pedestrian, or an affected homeowner.
  • Your Registration Number: The number of your vehicle if you were driving.
  • Third-Party Vehicle Registration Number: The registration number of the car you wish to check.
  • Date of the Incident: The specific date when the incident occurred.
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Once these details are submitted, and if the other vehicle’s registration is found on the MID, you will gain access to the car’s insurance details.


This includes the policy number, name of the insurance provider, and claims contact details, which are necessary to initiate a claim.

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Frequently asked questions

It’s highly unlikely that you can temporarily pause your car insurance with any insurance provider. The law mandates that your vehicle must be insured or declared SORN.

Even if you’re not using your car for a few months, it’s better to keep it insured to avoid any risks of damage, fire or theft, even when it’s parked on the driveway or in a garage. Cancelling and restarting a new policy may not be cost-effective compared to maintaining cover.

When buying a new car, some dealers may provide temporary insurance or you can arrange short-term cover yourself to protect you for a limited time until you set up an annual policy.

It’s crucial to have insurance, even if you’re driving your new car only a short distance from the dealership.

You can only drive someone else’s car if you’re a named driver on their policy, or if you have ‘driving other cars’ (DOC) cover included in your policy, but only in very limited circumstances.

It’s crucial never to assume you’re insured to drive other cars. If you’re uncertain, speak to your insurance provider before driving another car to avoid legal issues.

To check if your car is taxed and has a valid MOT certificate, use the free car vehicle enquiry service provided by the government.

Enter your registration number, and you’ll know if your car is taxed or declared off the road (SORN).

The service also tells you when your tax expires, the due date for your next MOT test, and other details about your car.

  • Go to the askMID website and enter the registration number of the vehicle you want to check.
  • You’ll then receive an answer whether the car is insured or not.
  • If the vehicle is insured and registered in the MID database, the insurance details of the car will be displayed on your screen. These details include the name of the insurance company and the policy number.

It’s mandatory to have car insurance even if your vehicle is parked on the street, driveway, or garage.

The police can check the Motor Insurance Database to confirm whether your car is insured or not. If it’s not insured, they can seize it instantly, even if you arrange insurance on the roadside.

Typically, car insurance policies last for a year, unless you opt for a short-term policy or cancel the contract early. Your policy ends on the expiration date at 23:59.

If you get into an accident after midnight on the expiration date, even if it’s just a few minutes later, you won’t be covered.

It’s important to note that the driver is insured, not the car.

Even if the owner of the car has an insurance policy for the vehicle, each driver needs to have their own insurance policy or temporary cover, or be specifically listed as a named driver on the policyholder’s insurance policy.

It’s a legal obligation to have insurance cover before driving your new car, even if it’s just to take it home.

If you drive your new vehicle without proper insurance, you may face significant penalties, including unlimited fines, points on your licence, and even having your car seized.

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