Brexit Update: Green Cards for international travel

17 December 2020

In the event of a “no deal” Brexit scenario, from 1 January 2021, UK motor insurance customers driving in the European Economic Area, Andorra, Serbia and Switzerland will need physical proof of motor insurance when they travel. This proof of insurance is commonly referred to as a Green Card and is likely to be rigorously checked at border points.

Failure to provide a green card could lead to significant fines and vehicle confiscation.

What are Green Cards?

Green Cards are international certificates of insurance issued by insurance providers, guaranteeing that the motorist has the necessary minimum motor insurance cover for driving in the country being travelled to.

Green Cards are not currently required for travel from the UK to other EEA countries, but a no deal scenario will mean the UK may no longer be a part of the European motor insurance ‘free circulation zone’.

The current requirements for Green Cards are as follows:

  • Must be supported with a valid Certificate of Insurance
  • Green Card must be presented in a hard-copy (printed)
  • Green Card can be either green or white paper with black ink
  • Green Card must cover the period of travel

Who will be affected?

While the possible changes would affect all motorists travelling internationally, commercial operators will need to pay particular attention to the changes.

Green Cards will need to be applied for in advance and one Green Card will be needed for each vehicle registration, regardless of whether it is part of a fleet.

Special attention will also need to be paid to the differences between countries’ rules; for example, trailers and vehicles are usually considered one unit within the UK, but in some EU member states there is a need to specifically state the trailer coverage with an identification number.

What steps do I need to take to get a Green Card?

Motor insurance providers are issuing green cards to those that require them in the event of a no-deal Brexit.

If you need to apply for a green card please contact your usual Verlingue contact, or alternately use the contact button below.

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