The Motor Insurers’ Bureau of Ireland (MIBI) have issued a reminder to motorists about the potential need for a Green Card that could be required to drive in Northern Ireland post-Brexit.
As has already been reported, if a no-deal Brexit were to take place, then anyone taking an Irish registered vehicle into the UK, including Northern Ireland, will be required to have an internationally recognised insurance document to show authorities that they have valid motor insurance.
This international insurance document is called a Green Card.
Green Cards are internationally recognised insurance documents which provide proof of insurance cover to law enforcement agencies.
It is a hard copy document which is printed on green paper or with a green background.
Policyholders who may be impacted and have not already received a Green Card are encouraged to contact their insurance providers this week to ensure they receive their documentation before the updated Brexit date of 12 April.
Of course, the situation could change if Brexit is subject to further delays.
If a deal is reached between the UK and the EU, then Green Cards will not be required. Should Brexit be further delayed, then the requirement for Green Cards will also be pushed back to a later date.
Different means for distributing Green Cards have been adopted by the various insurance providers.
Some are issuing Green Cards to all their policyholders, some are issuing Green Cards to policyholders in select areas (particularly counties on the border) and some are issuing Green Cards to policyholders upon request.
Policyholders who have not received any communication from their insurance provider on this matter and expect to need a Green Card immediately after Brexit should contact their provider this week.
Any motor insurance policyholder who has taken their insurance out with an insurance company should contact that company, while if they receive their policy via an insurance broker they should contact the broker.
Since the beginning of March, all insurance providers are required to process any requests they receive for Green Cards from their policyholders. This is the industry agreed procedure. Many insurance providers also have details on their websites about their application process as well as additional information about Green Cards.
David Fitzgerald, Chief Executive of the MIBI, said: “There is still time to get a Green Card ahead of Brexit. We would encourage anyone who needs one to contact their insurance provider this week – if they have not already done so or if they have yet to receive a communication from their insurer on this matter.
“If there is a ‘no deal’ Brexit then Green Cards will be required under UK and European law. Anyone who may need to drive in Northern Ireland or the rest of the UK in the days following Brexit should not take a chance, they should apply for one now.
“Those who will not be driving in Northern Ireland or the rest of the UK immediately after Brexit have more time to apply, they should contact their insurance provider one month before they travel.
The MIBI acts as a Green Card Bureau in the Republic of Ireland. So far they have distributed one million blank Green Cards to insurance companies, as well as electronic application templates for insurance providers who plan on completing the documentation digitally.