Car insurance fronting can save money on car insurance prices but is illegal and motorists caught out could face devastating consequences. Fronting is the method of naming a more experienced driver as the lead applicant and placing the main driver of the vehicle as a second driver.
This is common among parents and young drivers who may not be able to afford expensive car insurance premiums off their own back.
Prices will fall because insurance providers will work out your average costs on the perceived risk to a vehicle.
An experienced driver will be seen as having a lower risk claiming on an insurance policy than a younger motorist.
If the experienced driver is named as the lead holder, insurers will likely drop the overall price even if the younger motorist secretly uses the car more often.
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Young drivers are forced to pay over £1,500 for yearly cover
Policies can be invalidated if you have lied on an application
However, this is a serious breach of insurance fraud and can see motorists in deep trouble with the law if they are caught out.
Action Fraud states motorists could be prosecuted and even receive a criminal record if they are caught lying about the main driver on their policy.
There is no legal problem with having a parent named on a premium but they cannot be listed as the main driver if they rarely use the vehicle.
RAC experts say the main driver on a policy has to be the person who uses the car for the highest percentage of the time.
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The person who drives the car to school or work will often be the main driver as they will be using the vehicle on a daily basis.
Car insurance providers may refuse to payout on claims if they find out you have lied about a named driver on your original application.
Motorists would then be forced to pay for car repairs by themselves in a devastating blow for a simple error.
Matt Oliver, GoCompare’s car insurance spokesperson said: “The main thing to remember as always with insurance, if you are honest and declare information to the best of your ability there should not be any concerns from an insurer perspective in the event of a claim.”
Fronting could also make it harder to sign up for future car insurance cover as insurers will be hesitant to support someone with a record of illegal activity.
However, despite the consequences, many parents have openly stated they are prepared to take the risk to help their children save money.
Research from GoCompare found 10 percent of parents have admitted to lying on their child’s car insurance agreement in the past.
A total of 34 percent said they would consider fronting if it dramatically reduced the overall premiums their children had to pay.
Young motorists are charged over £1,500 on average each year for basic car insurance cover.
However, a 2015 Co-Operative study found 81 percent of those surveyed were not aware fronting was even illegal raising concerns many are breaking the law unknowingly.
Fraud and financial crime manager at the Association of British Insurers, Mark Allen, said many companies will recognise innocent mistakes but made it clear those who had lied to get cheaper policies were breaking the law.
He added: “The consequences include getting a criminal record and a massive financial headache if found to be at fault for a crash.
“The risks are just not worth it – especially when you can shop around for the right policy at the lowest price.”