Whether you have a legal, tax, insurance, management or land issue, the experts at Farmers Weekly’s Business Clinic can help.
Jeremy Mitchell, Regional Manager at A-Plan Rural Insurance, advises on vehicle coverage.
See also: Business Clinic: How do extreme weather conditions affect the insurance market?
Q: We have a growing collection of old and new, farm and non-farm vehicles. I juggle multiple insurance policies with varying renewal dates and terms and conditions.
Will I get a better deal if I consolidate them – or do I have to stick with specialists for certain items? What should I consider to balance a good level of coverage with a reasonable cost?
A: Agricultural machinery can quickly pile up, and with it the need for protection.
You could have used machines that are well worn but still running and in daily use, or a brand new kit that costs hundreds of thousands of pounds.
You can also have classic tractors for show or occasional use.
Then there are your private vehicles, including cars, farm trucks, utility vehicles, ATVs, and even a riding mower. All of these require car insurance.
So, let’s take a look at your options to ensure everything is covered.
Consolidating policies can save you time and money and provide you with a better level of cover. Benefits include:
- Fleet rates can be more competitive than individual vehicle insurance
- You will benefit from all driver coverage options rather than specified drivers
- Having a renewal date, broker and point of contact can remove a lot of administration
- You’ll avoid calling different people, for different vehicles, on different renewal dates for different questions
- A simpler complaints experience if something goes wrong.
The right cover
When purchasing insurance for your vehicles, you will have the choice of covering them either on a market value basis (also known as an indemnity) or on an agreed value basis.
The indemnity basis means that you are insured up to the value of the vehicle at the time of the loss, taking into account age, mileage and wear and tear.
You should be neither better nor worse after a disaster. For agricultural vehicles, this is capped at the value you declare on your policy.
You can opt for all-risk cover, i.e. in the event of a claim, your vehicle and any damage to third-party property are covered.
Or third party fire and theft, which only covers your vehicle for theft and fire damage. These two options are the most common and are suitable for almost any farm vehicle.
With agreed value insurance, you agree on a fixed amount that your vehicle is worth. It is a guarantee of value in the event of a claim.
It may be suitable for vehicles that are worth more than average for that particular age and model, or high value or unique vehicles such as tractors or classic cars.
- Most new vehicles will be insured “new for old” during the first 12 months of the vehicle’s life.
- All policies must extend liability protection, which covers you for any damage to people’s property or injury that you may have caused.
- Trailed agricultural equipment is often automatically covered at the same level as the towing vehicle. Check if there are limits to the sum insured.
- For quads, ATVs, and riding mowers, even when a vehicle isn’t driven on the road often, it’s worth insuring it on a motor policy. Otherwise, in the event of an incident, you could be personally liable for the damages.
Speak to a specialist rural broker on how to improve your vehicle coverage.
Do you have a question for the panel?
Describe your legal, tax, financial, insurance or farm management question in no more than 350 words and weekly farmers ask a member of the panel. Please provide as much information as possible.
Email your question to FW-Businessclinic@markallengroup.com using the subject line “Business Clinic”.