A Nigerian motor vehicle third party insurance is essential for every motorists in Nigeria. The Nigerian Motor Vehicles (Third Party Insurance) Act makes it mandatory for motor vehicle users to have an insurance policy in respect of third party risks. Section 5 of the Act provides some exemptions for the requirement of an insurance policy. If you are interested in knowing about the exemptions, you can find a soft copy of the Act at Placng.org.
The purpose of this article however is to highlight the benefits of having third party insurance policy. Even though the Nigerian Motor Vehicles (Third Party Insurance) Act came into force in 1950, many motor vehicle users are not taking full advantage of it. This is why people often engage in heated arguments when their vehicles get damaged as a result of collision. And even worse, might pay a lot of money out of their pockets to repair damages.
Purpose of Nigerian motor vehicle third party insurance policy
The policy insures the person specified in the policy in respect of claims which may arise against such person in respect of death or physical injuries caused to other people. An example could be where there is a collision of a bus and a car which causes the car headlight to break. The insurance policy of the bus driver would pay for the damages caused to the car. This means that the bus driver need not pay out of pocket expenses such as repair costs to the other driver. Motor vehicle third party insurance also covers death or personal injury caused to another person. For instance, where a car hits a motorcycle rider and causes the rider to suffer a broken harm, the insurance policy will take care of the claim. Thus, you can see why it is important to have a third party motor vehicle insurance policy.
How much does motor vehicle third party insurance cost in Nigeria?
The cost of motor vehicle third party insurance in Nigeria is usually around 5 thousand naira per annum. If you are a vehicle owner and you can afford to replenish your gas tank with fuel every now and then, 5 thousand naira insurance policy would not be a bad investment. Considering particularly the embarrassment it could save you and the out of pocket expenses which could be quite hefty.
If you would like to go a step further, you can go for a comprehensive motor vehicle insurance. If you have this type of insurance, then you probably already know what it is and what it covers. But for the benefit of those who are not familiar with it, it is what mentioning its usual coverage briefly. A comprehensive motor vehicle insurance usually gives you all the benefits of the third party insurance. However, while a third party insurance protects you against claims from third parties (such as cost of repairs of another person’s vehicle), you could also claim the cost of repairs of your own vehicle from your insurance policy issuer. It also does more by allowing you to claim the cost of your vehicle in case of theft.
Cost of comprehensive insurance policy however is usually higher than the cost of third party insurance. The cost of comprehensive vehicle insurance policy in Nigeria is usually around 5% of the cost of purchase of your vehicle.
Should one have an argument to establish guilt/liability if involved in vehicle collision/accident?
It is unnecessary to play the blame game. Thanks to technology, nowadays almost everyone have smartphones capable of taking pictures. You could take pictures which your insurance policy issuer might find useful in processing claims. Both drivers would need to exchange insurance policy details. You can check that the insurance policy is valid before leaving the scene of the collision/accident. This is because you would not want to end up with an invalid (or even fake) insurance policy details and there are chances you would not see the other party/driver again.
Thanks to information technology, you can verify the validity of a motor vehicle insurance policy issued in Nigeria at the Nigerian Insurance Industry Database (NIID) website. You can do this by simply navigating to their ‘check policy’ page and entering the vehicle registration number to check whether the insurance policy is valid. Another option would be to call the insurance policy issuer whose telephone number would usually be provided in the insurance policy document.
Tips for getting a motor vehicle third party insurance policy in Nigeria
You can get a motor vehicle third party insurance policy from an insurance company.
- When buying your insurance policy, try buying from a reputable insurance company. Feel free to walk into an insurance company and ask for a motor vehicle third party insurance policy. The NIID mentioned above also has a list of insurance companies that offer third party insurance on its website.The cost is usually around the same price (around 5 thousand naira).
- Make sure your insurance policy is genuine. You can do this by visiting the NIID website. If your insurance policy is not showing in the database of the NIID, contact the insurance company where you bought the insurance policy from to find out why.