Car insurance prov...
Insurers 'ripping off' motorists with charges for policy changes
Consumer watchdog claims some insurers charge £75 for cancelling a policy.
Car insurance providers are charging drivers "exorbitant fees" for making tiny policy alterations - with some levying more than £30 just to update a driver's name when they marry.
According to Which? insurers Axa and Swiftcover both charge £30 to change an address, update a surname on marriage or change the vehicle covered. Hastings would charge a fee of £35 for similar changes.
It says that Budget Insurance levies a fee of £75 for cancelling a policy while Axa, Zurich, Sheila's Wheels and More Than all charge £50 or more for the same service.
And customers who can't afford to pay their premium as a lump sum can also be penalised. Budget Insurance, Axa and Swiftcover all charge between 29.3% and 32.3% interest a year depending on the policy for drivers who want to pay in instalments.
However Age UK and First Direct do not charge extra for their monthly payment options.
Which? chief executive, Peter Vicary-Smith says: "It's a disgrace that insurers charge exorbitant fees to make basic changes to a policy.
"These charges should reflect the real cost to the company and not a way of making easy money from consumers who are already struggling with high and rising insurance premiums."
However, Swiftcover told the Daily Telegraph that Which? has "simply got it wrong", adding that "Swiftcover.com has always been an online-only insurer, allowing customers to change their policy online whenever they wish, and as often as they need to - without charge".
"If, however, a policyholder chooses to update their policy by speaking to the help desk, there is an admin charge of £30, like with many other insurers," said the representative.