Cost of car insurance jumps 35% in a year

According to new CSO figures for May...

Cost of car insurance jumps 35% in a year

File photo of traffic on a motorway | Image: Rui Vieira / PA Wire/Press Association Images

Motorists paid 35.5% more on their insurance in May when compared with the same month in 2015.

According to new figures from the Central Statistics Office's consumer price index, the premium rates for insuring cars and commercial vehicles show no signs of slowing down.

Home insurance increased by nearly 10%, while health insurance was up 6.5%.

Overall the prices for those miscellaneous goods and services climbed 5.6%.

The cost of hotel accommodation was up slightly, while it is more expensive to buy food and drink in licensed premises, restaurants and cages.

The rate of inflation remained flat, with the bumps in insurance offset by lower petrol and diesel prices, a reduction in the price of cars and a fall in air fares. The cost of furniture and furnishings also fell.

This week, the Government accepted a Fianna Fáil motion calling for a taskforce to be established to investigate why insurance premiums have risen by hundreds of euro.

During the debate, Independent TD Mattie McGrath compared insurance companies to terrorists, accusing them of "naked hijacking".

Fianna Fáil is also demanding the creation of a new National Claims Register to force insurance companies to publish anonymised details of all of their payouts.

As much as 80% of the claims lodged the Injuries Board are now being settled outside its remit, with many secret cash settlements taking place between road accident victims and insurers.

Fianna Fáil's finance spokesman Michael McGrath told the Irish Independent:

"At the minute, there are public records on the decisions of the Injuries Board and the courts – but there is a big black hole and a deficit of information for at least 75% of cases...

"We don't know what level of awards are being agreed so it's hard to evaluate the companies' claims in that regard."