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Drivers warned of expensive costs if number plates are lost without proper car insurance

Following the new number plate changes at the beginning of March, many drivers may have waited to purchase a new car with a “22” plate or buy their own personalised plate. The cost of a personalised registration plate from the DVLA starts at £250, but this figure can rise significantly depending on the perceived value of the plate. 

But motorists are being warned that their valuable personalised number plate may be at risk if the proper insurance isn’t in place.

They may also lose the registration plate if they dont act quickly enough in the event their car is written off or scrapped.

GoCompare car insurance analysed more than 330 comprehensive car insurance policies which revealed only 19 specifically cover the loss of a personalised plate, in the event the car is written off.

Of those providing cover, the sum insured varies, with one insurer providing cover for less than £1,500. 

READ MORE: Drivers urged to ‘hypermile’ to save around £600 a year on fuel costs

To reclaim the personalised plate, a motorists will need to prove that the car has a valid MOT and tax at the time of the theft.

Mr Fulthorpe continued, saying: “When you make an insurance claim for the cost of your car following a total loss or write-off, the insurer owns both the vehicle and its registration number – and this also applies to personalised plates.

“As the claimant you can repurchase your registration number from the insurer, if they still own it, for no more than the settlement price.

“However, if your insurer has already disposed of your vehicle, then all rights to the registration plate go with the vehicle.

“In this case, you will need to contact the DVLA and your insurer to let them know you want to keep the plate. 

“The insurer will then write a letter of non-interest and send it to the DVLA. As the registered keeper, you will have to pay a retention fee to keep the plate if you don’t have another vehicle to transfer it to.

“When you register a personalised plate to a vehicle, remember to tell your insurer immediately, otherwise your policy could be invalidated.

“As so many insurance policies do not cover the loss of personalised number plates, it’s also extra important to check the fine print and make sure you have the cover you need before splashing out on a personalised plate.”

Currently, the highest price paid for a number plate sits at £518,840 for the sought-after “25 0” plate.

The DVLA advertises a number of personalised number plates on offer on their Twitter account.

Some of the standouts include “SN10 0WY” for the unpredictable weather, “R022 LLS” for a Rolls Royce owner and “DA22 LER”, with all plates starting at £250.



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