Auto Insurance Rule: Bumper-to-bumper insurance mandatory for new cars, HC’s decision

The Madras High Court on Thursday ruled that “bumper-to-bumper” insurance should be made mandatory whenever a new vehicle is sold. This is going to come into effect from 1st September. The court said that this should be separate from the coverage of the driver, passengers and the owner of the vehicle for up to five years. After this period, the owner of the vehicle must remain vigilant for the safety of the driver, passengers, any third party as well as himself.

The judge said, “This court directs that whenever a new vehicle is sold after September 1, every year for a period of five years, in addition to covering the driver, passengers and owner of the vehicle, bumper-to- Bumper insurance is also mandatory.”

“Thereafter the owner of the vehicle should be vigilant in protecting the interests of the driver, passengers, third parties and himself, so as to avoid imposing unnecessary pressure on the owner of the vehicle, as bumper-to-bumper for more than five years.” Bumper insurance cannot be extended.”

He allowed a writ petition of New India Assurance Company Limited challenging the order dated 7 December 2019 of the Motor Accident Claims Tribunal of the Special District Court at Erode.

The passage of this order means that accident victims in Tamil Nadu will get more coverage in their favour. Justice Vaidyanathan also made it clear that this order will not prevent the claimants from claiming compensation for the death of the deceased from the owner of the car.

What is bumper-to-bumper insurance and how does it work?

It is essentially a type of car insurance, which gives you complete coverage of the vehicle. This means that when you face an accident and there is a loss that needs to be covered, the insurer will not deduct the depreciation value from the coverage. Apart from this, the motor insurer will pay the full cost of replacing the body parts of your vehicle. However, this type of insurance does not cover engine damage caused by an oil leak or water loss.

Though it gives you a full range of coverage, it should be noted that you will pay higher premium for this type of policy. However, it has other advantages.

It can be availed at the time of buying and renewing the policy. You can also claim the full amount, whereas a standard insurance coverage pays only about 40 percent. This is more beneficial for new cars or vehicles with a maximum age limit of three years.

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