Provision of Green Cards to Policyholders
Fri Mar 8 2019
As you may be aware, there has been some public and media disquiet in recent days in relation to the processes being adopted by some insurance providers for the distribution of Green Cards.
We have been engaging with the MIBI, which is responsible for the distribution to Insurers of Green Cards. The MIBI has reaffirmed that the official Green Card distribution policy of the country is that Green Card requests should be processed.
This approach was agreed at a series of stakeholder meetings coordinated by the MIBI and advised to you, our Members in our bulletins of 17 January 2019 and 28 February 2019. MIBI has reiterated that motorists who plan on driving in Northern Ireland, or elsewhere in the UK immediately after a no-deal Brexit, should contact their Brokers one month in advance of their expected travel date. Brexit is currently scheduled for 29 March 2019. Should that date be delayed, then the requirement for Green Cards will also be pushed back.
Since the beginning of March, all insurance providers, including Brokers, should process requests they receive from policyholders. We have been advised by some Members that some insurers have failed adequately to communicate their position and some have not yet provided Green Cards. Some Insurers have told policyholders they are not issuing Green Cards. Others seem to be telling policyholders to call back in late March, while in some situations providers are suggesting that Green Cards will only be delivered after 29 March 2019.
These positions are incorrect and at odds with the office Green Card distribution policy of the country, which was agreed at the stakeholder meetings coordinated by the MIBI.
We understand some insurers may have issued Brokers with specific guidance as to how they wish Brokers to proceed. Notwithstanding this, Brokers should reassure clients and confirm that if they require one they will be issued with a Green Card prior to 29 March 2019.
Clients who contact you should have their details taken and they should be informed that their request is being processed and the Green Card will be issued to them ahead of Brexit (currently scheduled for 29 March 2019). This is to ensure that anyone who expects to drive in Northern Ireland or elsewhere in the UK in the days immediately after Brexit will have their Green Card on time. Anyone who plans on travelling after that period is being advised to contact their insurance provider one month before their journey.
Green Cards will only be required if there is a ‘no deal’ Brexit. However, given how close we now are to the scheduled date for Brexit (it is 3 weeks today to 29 March 2019), then all Brokers need to start processing requests for Green Cards. That is the approach that is being implemented for the distribution of Green Cards and has been widely communicated throughout the industry by Brokers Ireland and the MIBI.
In case any confusion persists on this matter, the MIBI has prepared a number of documents, which will assist you in your communications to clients. These are:
- Suggested language to be used in communications with customers
- An Industry focused FAQ document which addresses some of the queries of interest to Members
- A public FAQ document addressing some of the main questions about Brexit and Green Cards. You are welcome to reference this document on your own website or to link to the MIBI FAQ page here.
The MIBI has now issued one million blank Green Cards, as well as electronic Green Card templates, to insurance companies for distribution and is actively engaged on this issue. If any Brokers continue to experience difficulties, they should contact the insurance company in question and cite the position of the MIBI.
We are monitoring the position in the UK as regards the upcoming votes impacting on Brexit and will communicate the position of insurers on Green Cards should a no-deal Brexit be proceeding on 29 March 2019.