If you are unfortunate enough to be involved in an Accident caused by an uninsured or unidentified vehicle you could make a claim via the Motor Insurance Bureau of Ireland (also know as the MIBI) who are a non-profit making Irish registered company set up by agreement between the Government and the Irish motor insurance companies
The MIBI compensate innocent victims of accidents caused by uninsured and unidentified vehicles and they are also responsible for operating the Green Card System in Ireland which ensures that Irish citizens who sustain loss or are injured in accidents caused by foreign-registered vehicles here are not disadvantaged.
The MIBI also operates the Motor Insurance Information Centre of Ireland (also known as the MIICI) which assists Irish residents who have sustained damage or injury in an accident in another EU Member State by providing information on the insurer of the foreign vehicle at fault and the claims representative for that insurer in Ireland. They also manage the Motor Compensation Body which deals with claims from Irish Citizens involved in accidents outside their country of residence.
Claims with Uninsured or Unidentified Vehicles
The MIBI compensation scheme covers Personal Injury claims irrespective of whether the offending vehicle is identified or not. Compensation for Personal Injury may be payable, subject to liability, in all cases where the offending vehicle is uninsured or cannot be identified.
It is not always possible however to claim compensation for your own vehicle or property damage under the MIBI compensation scheme. Where the offending vehicle is not identified there is no provision in the 1988 or the 2004 MIBI Agreements to recover losses for vehicle or property damage. The 2009 Agreement introduced compensation for vehicle or property damage against an unidentified vehicle where there are significant personal injuries arising from the same accident. In circumstances where you could claim for your own damage certain excesses would apply.
If your own vehicle is Insured Comprehensively or the damaged property is covered under a policy of insurance, the agreement stipulates that the claim must be dealt with by the Insurer of the vehicle or property. However, there is an agreement in place between the MIBI and all companies writing motor insurance here which guarantees that your no claims discount will not be affected where the Comprehensive Insurer compensates the policyholder on behalf of the MIBI. This agreement ensures that the claim will be dealt with without any delay in having your vehicle repaired.
How to make a claim
If you wish to make a claim you must complete the MIBI claim notification form which can either be completed online or available for download via the MIBI Website. The complete form should contain as much accurate information on the accident and the vehicles and parties involved as possible and then be submitted to the MIBI by either e-mail or registered post. Upon receipt the MIBI will write to you or your representative to confirm that they have received your claim.
The MIBI will then begin looking into the details of your claim and endeavour to establish the Insurance position of the offending driver and vehicle, obtain a Garda Report on the accident and a Motor Assessor’s Report on the damage to your vehicle where applicable.
When all the required information is provided and verification of the circumstances of the accident is complete the MIBI will pass the claim to one of their Claims Management Services Providers to complete the investigation and to accept service of proceedings or PIAB notification. In due course, following thorough investigation of the circumstances and liability, the claim will be settled by the Claims Management Services provider and compensation paid as appropriate.
Claims with Foreign Registered Vehicles
The MIBI also deal with claims where you may be involved in an accident caused by a foreign registered vehicle in this country including all Personal Injury claims, vehicle or property damage. In order to pursue a claim for vehicle or property damage it is vital to establish, as a minimum, that the foreign registration plate attached to the offending vehicle is a valid one issued in the country of origin. If this cannot be established, the claim for vehicle or property damage cannot be pursued however this restriction does not apply to Personal Injury claims. There are no excesses applicable to vehicle and property damage claims against foreign registered vehicles.
If your vehicle is insured on a Comprehensive basis or your property is covered under a policy of insurance, you may claim for loss from your insurer or the property insurer. The insurer can, in turn, recover their outlay from the MIBI. This ensures a minimum of inconvenience and loss. This facility is subject to confirmation of the validity of the foreign registration plate. Your No Claims Bonus may be affected until such time the claim has been settled by the MIBI, once settled your Insurer should re-instate your bonus as it was before the accident.
How to make a claim
If you wish to make a claim you must complete the MIBI claim notification form which can either be completed online or available for download via the MIBI Website.
The complete form should contain as much accurate information on the accident and the vehicles and parties involved as possible and then be submitted to the MIBI by either e-mail or registered post. Upon receipt the MIBI will write to you or your representative to confirm that they have received your claim.
It is particularly important where a foreign registered vehicle is involved to obtain as much information relating to the offending vehicle as possible including the registration number, the make and model of the vehicle, the country of origin, the name of the driver and Insurance details. The time taken to process your claim is likely to be reduced if as much information as possible is made available. It should be noted that a foreign Insurer can take up to three months to confirm the existence or otherwise of Insurance and consequently investigation of these claims may take longer to complete.
The MIBI will then begin looking into the details of your claim and endeavour to establish the validity of the registration plate of the foreign vehicle together with the Insurance position, obtain a Garda Report on the accident and obtaining a Motor Assessor’s Report on the damage to your vehicle where applicable.
If you are claiming for personal injury they will also require copies of any medical records from your doctor and any hospital attended after the accident.
When all the required information is provided and verification of the circumstances of the accident is complete the MIBI will pass the claim to either the nominated agent of the foreign insurer in this country or if no such agent has been appointed, to one of the MIBI’s claims management services providers to complete the investigation and to accept service of the proceedings or PIAB notification. In due course, following thorough investigation of liability, the claim will be settled by the claims management services provider or nominated agent and compensation paid as appropriate.
The Motor Insurance Information Centre
The MIBI was designated to maintain a Motor Insurance Information Centre (also known as the MIICI) for the purpose of facilitating EU citizens involved in accidents outside their state of residence in identifying the Insurer of the vehicle involved.
The Directive also required every motor insurer in all of the Member States to appoint a Claims Representative in each State to handle claims. These provisions enable an EU citizen who sustains damage or injury to identify the insurer involved and also the Claims Representative in their Member State of residence.
If you have been involved in an accident outside Ireland and wish to establish the identity of the Insurer of the responsible vehicle you could submit a query via the MIBI Website and supply information regarding when the accident happened, the registration number of the vehicle responsible, the country where the accident happened together with your own contact details and the MIICI will make contact with the Information Centre in the country of accident with a request for insurance details.
When this is received the information is passed to you together with details of the Claims Representative in this country who will investigate and handle the claim on behalf of the foreign insurer.
The Motor Accident Compensation Body
The MIBI also manage a Compensation Body to deal with claims from Irish Citizens involved in accidents outside their country of residence.
If you have sustained loss or injury in an accident in another EU Member State and the MIICI has been unable to ascertain the identity of the insurer of the responsible vehicle, or the responsible vehicle is unidentified or either the foreign insurer or its Claims Representative in Ireland fails to comply with their statutory obligations you can make a claim via the compensation body.
If you wish to make a claim to the Compensation Body you must complete the online claim notification form located on the MIBI Website. Once completed and returned to the MIBI with as much accurate information on the accident and the vehicles and parties involved as possible.
The Compensation Body will then begin their investigations to establish the facts and ascertain the Road Traffic Accident law in the country where the accident happened.
If you are claiming for personal injury you would need to provide copies of medical records from your doctor and any hospital attended after the accident and if you are claiming for vehicle damage they will need documentation from you to verify the damage claimed.
When the enquiries are completed the Compensation Body will pass the claim to one of their Claims Management Services Providers for further investigation and settlement of the claim, subject to liability.
For further information please visit the Motor Insurance Bureau website.