There's nothing worse than coming back to your car to find it’s been damaged – even if nothing’s been stolen. Thankfully, there are people who can help get your car back to normal.
- Vandalism rates are down, but it still costs the public millions
- What are you covered for if your car gets vandalised?
- What about if your car has been vandalised beyond repair?
We talked to LV= senior motor underwriter Michelle Smith about who could help you repair your car if it’s been vandalised and what you’re likely to be covered for under your car insurance policy.
The good news is that ‘criminal damage to vehicle’ crimes, the category that vandalism sits in, are at a 37-year low, with just 693 instances recorded between April 2017 and March 2018, according to ONS figures.
However, police data has revealed that the cars of more than three million motorists were criminally damaged last year, costing them £1.9 billion in total.
So it’s still a good idea to take steps to prevent your car being vandalised – especially as many of these steps also help protect your car from theft, too.
Who should you call if your car’s been vandalised?
If you return to your car to find it vandalised, you should first call the police to report it and get a crime reference number. You can also report vandalism on the gov.uk website. If you need to claim on your car insurance, give your insurer a call.
'At LV= we have a vandalism promise, which means your no claim discount won’t be affected if you make a vandalism claim – you’ll just need to pay your excess,’ says Michelle.
What counts as car vandalism?
If your windows are smashed by a vandal, you'll be able to claim under the glass section of your LV= policy, so your no claim discount will not be affected.
What evidence should you get and how can you get it?
‘At LV= we require a crime reference number,’ says Michelle.
The police will give you a crime reference number when you report the vandalism.
What do you do if your car has been rendered undrivable?
If you can’t drive your car due to vandalism, call your insurer and they’ll tell you how you can get your car repaired.
‘You may have courtesy car cover with your insurer,’ says Michelle. ‘If you’re with LV=, we’ll guarantee you a courtesy car for the duration of your repairs.’
How can you get repairs and what are you covered for?
Your insurer will be able to help.
‘Comprehensive vehicle insurance will cover you for damage to your car, including damage caused by vandalism,’ says Michelle.
What if your car is written off by vandals?
If your car is deemed a total loss, your insurer is likely to pay you the market value of your car.
‘If you’re insured with LV=, your car is less than 12 months old and you’re the first registered keeper, we’ll replace it with a new one,’ says Michelle.
How can you prevent your car from getting vandalised?
Preventing vandalism to your car is very similar to preventing theft.
‘If you can’t park in your garage or on your drive, try to park your car in a well-lit area,’ recommends Michelle.
Wherever you park, it’s also a good idea to leave a bit of space between you and other cars, as it means thieves and vandals will have fewer places to hide if they’re scoping for something to steal. You should also make sure that you don’t leave anything valuable visible, and preferably not inside the car at all.
Read our article on protecting your car from theft for more tips.
Although you can reduce the risk of your car getting damaged, vandalism is sadly a senseless crime that can happen to anyone. Thankfully, your insurer should be able to help out with getting your car back on the road or getting you some new wheels if you need them.
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