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Australia - Car Tax and Insurance

In Australia it is essential that you have Compulsory Third Party Insurance in place before you begin to drive. This is the minimum level of insurance that you can have and you can be prosecuted for driving without it. Road cameras are able to detect cars that have no insurance. This insurance is paid for when you register your vehicle with the local authorities in most states, but in New South Wales you need to take out your own policy so that he insurance company can inform the authorities. It will cover any other person who is a victim of an accident where you are driving and at fault.

In addition it covers pedestrians, cyclists and other people on the roads and you are covered no matter where you are in the country, 24 hours a day. Accident victims are compensation for reasonable levels of medical treatment and expenses that have been incurred as a result of the accident. Those who are partly at fault for the accident will not be covered and the driver who is responsible will not be covered. Vehicle damage and any damage to other types of property are not covered by the CTP. It is the responsibility of the injured person to prove that the driver is at fault. If you are driving a car and are on your own when you crash into a lamppost, then you are not able to claim compensation. However, if there is a passenger in a similar crash, they can make a claim.

In recent years it has been made possible for children under the age of 16 to make a claim even if they were responsible for the accident. Accidents which occurred after 1st October 2007 which are considered to be the fault of no particular driver have also been altered in the policy as claims can now be made in these circumstances. A blameless accident would cover mechanical failure of the car, the driver taking ill in the car or the car colliding with an animal. Drivers are still unable to make a claim in these circumstances but their passengers can.

Claims on this type of insurance are made to Allianz Australia Limited as they are the company that runs this insurance scheme for the government. They will be able to tell you if you have a valid claim and send you the appropriate forms.

Premiums for this type of insurance are detailed in the registration notices which are sent out to owners but you can get the details by calling your local vehicle registration customer service centre. These vary according to the make and age of the vehicle, as well as your address, modifications to the car and the status of any concessions that you have. If any of these details changes you need to inform the local registration centre as soon as possible, as your insurance can be invalidated otherwise.

It is also recommended that drivers take out private insurance in addition to the basic CTP policy. There are many insurers that will give you a quote for various types of private insurance.

Third party property insurance may be something that you want to consider. This will cover damage to another person’s property that has been caused by you, but your car will not be covered. Premiums for this type of insurance are not considered to be high. If you are in an accident with another car you will have to pay repair costs for their car without this type of insurance and this could be costly, so it is worth taking out this extra policy as a minimum.

Alternatively you can opt for comprehensive insurance which will cover damage to all cars, persons, property, theft and fire. Some car finance options will make it compulsory for you to have this type of insurance. This can be relatively expensive depending upon the type of car you have and the area that you live in.

The annual registration fee for vehicles is the same as the UK Road fund licence fee. This is known as ‘rego’ for short. The cost of registering a vehicle will vary according to the size of the engine on the vehicle and will vary from state to state. Each state will have the prices listed on the website of their vehicle registration department. This is billed separately from the cost of CTP insurance.

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