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Car insurance cost falls, and ministers target whiplash fraud

The cost of insuring your car has fallen at the fastest rate in the last 20 years, as an average of £80 was saved per policy over the last 12 months.

The news comes as ministers announce plans to reduce the cost of motoring, focusing on bringing down the amount of fraudulent whiplash claims, which result in higher premiums for everyone.

The fall in motor insurance, announced by the AA British Insurance Premium Index, brought the average cost of comprehensive insurance down from £648.61 per annum at the end of September 2012, to £568.32 at the same time this year. This represents a total fall of 12.4pc.

However, there have been differences in the scale of the reduction of premiums between different age brackets, and genders. Those aged between 23 and 29 have experienced the biggest drop in premiums, while young and old drivers saw lower premium reductions. Women also saw lower decreases in their premiums, after an EU law on gender equality was passed last December, which stated gender could no longer play a part in determining the cost of insurance premiums. The result of this was that, on the whole, premiums for women were raised to bring them in line with those of men.

While this is good news for motorists, ministers have also targeted reducing the amount of claims that are made for whiplash as the result of an incident on the road. This will include the use of independent medical panels that will identify and examine claims for compensation that appear to be exaggerated or fraudulent. It is hoped that this will help to curb the ‘compensation culture’, and will help to further reduce car insurance premiums.

Justice Secretary, Chris Grayling said: “We are turning the tide on the compensation culture and helping hard-working people by tackling high insurance premiums and other motoring costs.

“It is not right that people who cheat the system get away with it, while forcing up the price for everyone else”.

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