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Irish motorists will need ‘green cards’ to drive in UK under Brexit

  • Ireland
  • General


Irish insurers and brokers are preparing to issue so-called ‘green cards’ to Irish motorists planning to drive to the UK, including to Northern Ireland, from the beginning of March 2019 in what will be one of the first tangible impacts a no-deal Brexit is likely to have.

In the event that the UK leaves the EU without an agreement, all motor vehicles travelling from the Republic of Ireland to the United Kingdom including Northern Ireland, will require a ‘green card’ to prove they have valid motor insurance in the jurisdiction. The green card is the internationally recognised insurance document, which is evidence that a driver has the minimum compulsory motor insurance cover required by the country visited. It provides a guarantee of insurance for a minimum of 15 days and can remain valid until the expiry date of the motor insurance policy, providing cover for multiple trips.

Currently all motor vehicles with a valid Irish registration travelling within the EU are covered by the terms of the EU Motor Insurance Directive (the “MID”). The MID allows motor vehicles to travel freely between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland and the UK as well as within other EU countries without requiring supplementary insurance documentation. As many as 400,000 green cards have been sent by the Motor Insurance Bureau of Ireland (the “MIBI”) to Irish insurance companies and brokers and any motorists who wish to drive their car in the UK will need to apply for the documentation a month before their planned departure date, in the event of a no-deal exit.

This information is for guidance purposes only and should not be regarded as a substitute for taking legal advice. Please refer to the full terms and conditions on our website.

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