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Do You Have to Be the Registered Keeper for GAP Insurance?


When purchasing Guaranteed Asset Protection (GAP) insurance for a vehicle, one common question arises: do you have to be the registered keeper?


The answer may vary depending on the method of vehicle acquisition but in general;


The policyholder for the GAP insurance must be the vehicle's owner and, or the registered keeper. 


The only exception is for contract hire style leases with no option to buy.


Gap Insurance explained - in this article


Understanding Insurable Risk


The concept of "insurable risk" plays a significant role in determining who needs GAP insurance. Insurable risk refers to the person, persons or company that stands to lose financially if the vehicle is written off due to an accident, fire, theft, or flood.       Gap Insurance questions


Here are some common methods of purchasing a vehicle and who may have insurable risk in each case:

  1. Owned outright - The buyer who holds the sales invoice and V5 in their name.
  2. Bank Loans - Similar to cash purchases, the individual named as the vehicle's owner and/or registered keeper on the sales invoice.
  3. Hire Purchase or Personal Contract Purchase (PCP) - The person named on the finance agreement and also on the purchase invoice and the V5.
  4. Contract Hire Lease - The leaseholder with an insurable risk for paying off the lease but not for owning or purchasing the vehicle.


Who Must Be Insured on the Vehicle?


To make GAP insurance effective, anyone with 'insurable risk' must be detailed on both the GAP and the main comprehensive motor insurance policies.


Further, additional drivers can be named in the primary motor insurance, but the party with the 'insurable risk' must be named on the GAP Insurance cover.


Your motor insurer must cover all drivers to the same comprehensive level of coverage.


Vehicle Registration and GAP Insurance


Generally, the V5 registration document should be in the same name as the GAP insurance policyholder.


The exception is for lease or contract hire agreements with no option to own the vehicle. In these cases, the V5 is usually in the leasing company's name, and the person or company on the lease should be named on the GAP cover.


Who Cannot Benefit from a GAP Policy?


A person cannot benefit from a GAP Insurance policy if they cannot suffer financial loss if the vehicle is written off. For example, a 'named' driver on the main motor insurance policy who does not own, finance, or lease the car would not have an insurable risk and could not benefit from a GAP policy.


It would be a potential mistake if you purchase gap insurance in your name but were not named on the V5 and/or sales invoice unless it is a lease agreement you have on the vehicle.


If you have any doubts about who to list as the policyholder for the GAP insurance, seek further advice from your provider to ensure proper coverage.   


GAP Insurance Explained - FAQs     


Whose name should GAP insurance be in?     Gap Insurance


A GAP Insurance policy should be in the name of the registered keeper and/or owner of the vehicle in nearly every case. This should be if the types of gap insurance you want are Return to invoice gap insurance or Vehicle replacement insurance cover, then this is the case.


The only exception is when the Gap insurance is for a leased car. Here the vehicle is typically registered to the leasing company. The Lease/Contract hire Gap insurance taken should be in the name of the leaseholder, who has a potential shortfall on the outstanding finance on the lease to settle if the vehicle was written off.


Can I insure a car if I'm not the registered keeper?


It is possible to insure a car if someone else is the registered keeper. This would be possible with lease agreements where there is no option to own the vehicle. These rental agreements may require you to insure the value of your car with your motor insurer.


You can then buy gap insurance to cover the difference between your motor insurers' current market value settlement if the insured vehicle is declared a total loss and the lease settlement from the finance company.


Does GAP insurance cover named drivers?


Yes, Gap insurance covers the main insured and all named drivers on a comprehensive motor insurance cover for the vehicle. This is subject to all policy terms and conditions being met. Check the full details in the policy documents.


Does the main driver have to be the policyholder?


Not necessarily. As long as the Gap Insurance policyholder is a named driver on the main motor insurance policy and the registered keeper and/or owner has the lease agreement in their name, that is fine.


An example of this may be when a husband and wife share a motor insurance policy for the vehicle. The wife could be the car insurance's main driver and policyholder. The husband may have the finance agreement in his name and the car registered to him.


In this case, we can have the Gap insurance in joint names.


Of course, the motor insurer and the finance company must also allow this arrangement also. If the motor insurer does not pay out if the car is stolen, in an accident or suffers from a flood or fire, then you cannot claim on the Gap insurance either.


Is GAP insurance on a car or person?


Gap insurance is much like standard vehicle insurance in that the policyholder is insured on the vehicle specified on the Gap cover.


If you change your vehicle and get a new one, you must either transfer the remainder of the cover or look at purchasing gap insurance for the replacement vehicle.


You cannot transfer the Gap insurance cover to the new vehicle owner.