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02 October 2019

In the event of a no-deal Brexit, a Green Card will become a legal requirement when driving in Europe

With uncertainty around the UK securing a Withdrawal Agreement, many people are wondering how a no-deal will affect driving in the EU, EAA or Eire on or after 31st October 2019.

In the event of a no-deal Brexit, you will be legally required to provide proof of motor insurance in the form of a Green Card. This certificate confirms that you are appropriately insured and - importantly - you must bring a physical copy with you, as digital versions are currently not accepted.

Insurers are in the process of fulfilling their obligations to issue Green Cards; as every insurer is different, please contact Erskine Murray directly in the first instance to advise us of your intention to drive in the EU on or after 31st October so we can help to ensure you are covered.

If you are intending to travel with a trailer, please note that you will need two Green Cards - one for the trailer itself and one for the towing vehicle.

If a Withdrawal Agreement is not reached, you will also be required to hold an International Driving Permit (IDP), which is available over the counter at participating Post Offices. You will also need to hold an IDP to hire a vehicle abroad in the event of a no-deal Brexit. Please note that an IDP isn’t required in Ireland. You should also take your UK driving licence with you when travelling in the EU, and you must have a GB sticker displayed on your car.

While the processing and issuing of a Green Card generally takes only a couple of days, we would strongly advise allowing more time - ideally 15 days - as you will need to allow time for a green card to be received in the post. Whilst it may be printed locally, it must be printed double-sided on green paper. You’ll need a Green Card even if you have a foreign-use extension on your motor insurance policy.

If you travel without a Green Card in the event of a no-deal, you may not be allowed to board a ferry or cross the border. In addition, you could be fined and your vehicle may be impounded. Please note that your motor insurance policy does not cover you for fines or release fees.

If you are intending to travel abroad in the EU, EEA, Andorra, Serbia, Switzerland or Eire on or after 31st October, please contact Erskine Murray as soon as possible to discuss your insurer’s requirements. You can contact your Account Handler directly, or please also feel free to call our office on 0116 265 4300 and we will be on-hand to advise and provide further guidance.

(Please note: the Green Card will not be required if an agreement between the EU and the UK is reached or a transitional arrangement is implemented).