*51% of customers received a quote of £1,344.07 or less for Third Party Only Insurance between Oct and Dec 2020, when using our journey via Confused.com
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Remember TPFT insurance won't pay out to replace or repair your car if you cause the accident so don't risk an expensive car.
Third party only cover will not pay out if your car is stolen or damaged in a break-in so third party, fire and theft might be better.
It may seem obvious that comprehensive quotes are more expensive but often that's not the case. Check all types of cover first.
You might expect third party only to be the cheapest form of insurance cover — after all, third party offers the least protection of all types of insurance. But this isn’t always the case, and drivers can end up paying more for less cover. In fact, according to Uswitch research, those who only search for third party cover could pay £929 more compared to a comprehensive policy. What is the difference between third party and comprehensive insurance?Read our full guide
We've answered common car insurance questions to help you understand what you need and to decide what car insurance is best for you.
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When insuring your car, you first need to choose from three levels of cover available:
third party – covers injury or damage you cause to others
third party fire and theft – adds payment to you if your car is stolen or catches fire
fully comprehensive – additionally cover damage to your own car
You will also need to tell your insurer how you will use your car. The basic level of cover is social, domestic and pleasure (SDP)
You can then add:
commuting – to one place of work (or to the station each day to get the train to work)
business use – varying levels depending on whether you visit different workplaces, or clients and work sites and what you carry with you
commercial use – using your car to transport as a key part of your job
It’s important to know the difference between different types of car insurance cover before buying your policy, and you should also consider all the different types of cover if you want to get the best deal.
Third party car insurance is the legal minimum cover you need to drive on the UK’s roads. This is also called third party only or abbreviated to TPO. Third party only insurance means that if you cause an accident your insurer will pay out to other people affected – if their property is damaged or if they are injured. Your passengers are also third parties so they would be compensated if injured too.
Third party only (TPO) insurance protects other people, vehicles and property in the event of a car accident that was your fault.
For example, if you drive into the rear of someone’s car, causing damage to the bumper and injuring the driver, your third-party insurance would then cover the cost of the other person’s car as well as their medical expenses.
Any damage to your own car or any injuries you suffer are not covered. For that, you need comprehensive car insurance cover. Although your passengers are considered to be third parties so they would be compensated if injured too.
Third party car insurance is the most basic form of car insurance cover and is a legal requirement to drive on UK roads. Third-party only cover is the best way to ensure that, if someone suffers a road accident that isn’t their fault, their costs can be recuperated.
Although third party only insurance it is the most basic type of cover, third party car insurance is not always the cheapest cover. It pays to shop around for different levels of cover.
Third-party only (TPO) is the minimum legal level of cover and only covers other vehicles and property in the case of an accident or claim.
Third party only car insurance covers:
damage to another person’s property – for example, if you crash your car and damage someone’s wall
damage to another person’s vehicle if you’re involved in a road accident.
injury to a passenger or driver of another car or a pedestrian or cyclist you injure
injury to a passenger in your car
Third party, fire and theft policies can offer additional peace of mind by including protection if your car is damaged or destroyed in a fire, stolen, or damaged as a result of theft from your vehicle.
If you have a third party, fire and theft policy and are involved in an accident, you still won’t always be able to claim for any damage to your car.
If you are involved in an accident and your car is damaged, you should be able to make a claim from the other driver’s insurance if it was their fault.
Third-party, fire and theft (TPFT) also lets you claim for things you cannot on a third-party only policy:
replacing your car if it’s stolen
damage as the result of an attempted theft for example a stolen stereo system or windscreen
fire damage to the car whether accidental fires or as a result of arson (to claim for arson you need a crime reference number)
Comprehensive insurance, as the name suggests, offers the highest level of cover and in addition to everything covered by third party, fire and theft insurance, will pay out for repair or replacement of your vehicle even if you are involved in an accident that was your fault.
There are also a range of add-ons that can be included within a comprehensive policy or bought for a small additional premium. And comprehensive insurance is often the same price – and sometimes even cheaper – than lower levels of cover.
Yes, but it still only covers damage to another vehicle or person if you are at fault. If the other driver is at fault their insurance should cover any damage to your vehicle and injuries to you.
If you’ve got third party only or third party, fire and theft car insurance and you are hit by an uninsured driver, you can’t claim on your insurance for your damages but you might be able to a claim via the Motor Insurers’ Bureau, MIB
Prices for third party, fire and theft cover will differ as insurers rate all drivers on a number of factors and calculate their premiums that way.
These factors include:
your car make and model
your claims history
where you live
There is a price difference between the different types of car insurance cover but it is not always in the way you would expect. Many people often opt for TPO or TPFT policies because they consider them to be cheaper than comprehensive cover. But this isn’t always true. In fact, you may find some cases where comprehensive insurance works out to be as cheap as TPFT.
Third party cover is not always cheaper. Although comprehensive insurance includes more cover, many insurers offer it for the same price or even cheaper than third party, fire and theft policies.
Third party cover used to be cheaper but many young and new drivers tend to purchase them. These are higher risk drivers, so they make a disproportionate number of claims compared to other drivers.
Many insurers deem third party and third party, fire and theft policies as higher risk and premiums for this type of cover increased. Now, third party, fire and theft policies can be often more expensive than comprehensive policies for some drivers, even though they include less cover.
The average cost of car insurance, among all types of cover for drivers under 21 is £1,525, per year, with 18-year-olds paying the most, an average of £2,134 per year for car insurance – even for some third-party policies.