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DRIVER GUARDIAN MOTOR LEGAL EXPENSES POLICY

Many of the five-star reviews on here are based on the fact that the Driver Guardian Motor Legal Expenses policy is 'cheap' and 'good value'. Yes it is cheap, but how many of the people leaving glowing reviews have tried to make a claim under the Motor Legal Expenses cover, I wonder? Well, I have and based on my experience, I would not recommend this policy. First off: in the small print you will note that legal assistance for the small claims court – where most claims end up - is limited to £500. That should buy you 2-3 hours of a solicitor's time, at current rates of approx £200 per hour. IF that is, you can persuade Driver Guardian to take on your case. (On that note, I'd be delighed to hear from anyone who HAS successfully persuaded Driver Guardian, or specifically, its underwriter Co-Plus, to do so.) I sought legal assistance from Driver Guardian after my car was damaged in an IMO automated car wash. The person who took down the details of my claim was extremely helpful and led me to believe that they would get on the case immediately. I eventually received a letter from Co-Plus, the underwriter of the Driver Guardian policy, declining to pursue my claim as it 'has less han 50% chance of success in the small claims court'. One of the reasons it cited for this was 'the lack of independent witnesses' – a little hard to come by in an automated car wash. I then spent over six months locked in a war of correspondence with Co-Plus and Driver Guardian, tryng to persuade them to honour the policy and pursue the third party for damages on my behalf. It refused. Since Driver Guardian declined to deliver on the legal assistance I was expecting, I suggested it make a payment of £500 so that I could pursue the third party in the small claims court myself. It declined. Driver Guardian's 'help' consisted of suggesting that I get a second estimate for the work to my car – a pointless, diversionary tactic since they weren't going to pursue the third party to pay for it – and offered to advise on this. The representative then sent an email complaining that I failed to respond to his offer of help. Sorry, Driver Guardian but this was not the kind of 'help' I was looking for from you, or expecting when I took out this policy. The clue is in the name. Motor. Legal. Expenses. Not advice on the cost of the work to my car or an offer to contact the car wash operator informally. (A somewhat disingenuous suggestion since you were fully aware that he'd failed to respond to countless emails, phone calls and correspondence from his own public liability insurer, who agreed with me that that they considered him liable, but couldn't pay out on his policy as he'd ignored all communication.) Driver Guardian asks [below] 'how it could have dealt with my problem differently'. Answer: by providing legal assistance to pursue the third party. Postscript: Since writing this review Driver Guardian has, in addition to its reply below – which is inaccurate and mendacious* – sent me a threatening email ordering me to take this review down or they will pursue me for libel. People considering taking out this policy might wish to draw their own conclusions from that. The company also violated GDPR by referring to me by my name in its response (which, after I complained to TrustPilot was removed). Again, draw your own conclusions about the manner in which this company operates. [*Some of the inaccuracies and mistruths in the original response from Driver Guardian were removed after I threatened legal action of my own.]