Third Party Motor liability Insurance Policy

Third-party liability insurance policies provide coverage against death or bodily injuries sustained by a third party, damage caused to a third party’s property, and accidental death/permanent total disability of the driver of the vehicle.

Essentially, third-party motor liability insurance policy protects you against the legal liability arising from your vehicle’s participation in an accident that led to the injury, death or extensive property damage of an arbitrary third party. Thus, third-party insurance for cars brings you protection against unforeseen circumstances and peace of mind. In most cases, third-party covers offer compensation for a victim’s injuries, pain and suffering, and lost wages. The property damages suffered by a third party are also covered with this insurance. In case of death, the victim’s family can file a claim for compensation.

What is Third-Party Liability Insurance?

Third-party insurance is a form of liability insurance in which the insured purchases a policy for protection against the claim of a third party. Third-party motor insurance policy is a must for automobile owners to protect themselves against the claims of a third party if a vehicle meets with an accident.

Third-Party Motor Insurance Policy Overview:

Third-party motor liability insurance is usually part of the main car insurance policy. An important clause, some insurers may also offer this as a standalone add-on cover. This works out well for the penny conscious customer as the cost of a comprehensive car insurance policy is always much higher than a stand-alone third-party cover. In India, third-party insurance for private cars is offered by all car insurers, as it is mandatory, and is usually an essential requirement when people seek out car insurance policies. Again, third-party motor insurance online- signing up for, and/or renewing existing policies is the latest technologically minded update in this insurance speciality.

According to the Indian Motor Vehicles Act, third-party liability cover is a statutory requirement. Aptly, the concept of ‘third party’ arises from the fact that the principal beneficiary of this policy isn’t the original policyholder, or the insurance company, but an affected third party. Herein, this thoughtful policy will cover for the financial liability incurred by the car owner in the unfortunate event of the death or permanent disability of the third party that was impacted by the policyholder’s vehicle in an accident. In principle, IRDA calculates the compensation due to the victim on the earning capacity of the latter.

Motor Third-Party Insurance Premium Rates 2017:

Applicable from April 1, 2017, the policy premium rates pertaining to Third-Party Motor Insurance have been updated. The new third-party insurance rates for private cars are as follows-

Condition Relating to Engine Capacity Applicable Premium Rate
Not exceeding 1000cc 2055
Above 1000cc but lower than 1500cc 2863
Exceeding 1500cc 7890

* applicable from 1st April 2017

Why subscribe to a third party motor liability insurance? The features and benefits are listed below.

Features & Benefits Of Third-Party Insurance Policy For Cars:

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A standard third-party insurance for cars, takes care of the following in the event of your vehicle’s participation (or causal) of an accident, that resulted in-

  1. Death or bodily injury to a third party.
  2. Damage to third-party property.
  3. Accidental death of the vehicle’s Owner or Driver.
  4. Permanent Total Disability suffered by vehicle’s Owner or Driver.

Obviously, the benefits arising from such a clause in your are central to your core expectations. In simple words, the following benefits are part and parcel of this feature-

Peace of Mind- Doling out large sums of money to an affected third party, while dealing with this traumatic situation that completely hinges on financial payments could be stressful. A dedicated policy in this regard will save you the mental anxiety.

Hassle Free and Time Saving- With an option to buy or renew third-party motor insurance online, the process is infinitely faster, simpler and completely dependent on your timing and convenience.

Cost Effective- The inclusion of the third-party motor liability insurance component in the overall policy, as either an add-on or part of the core policy, is very cost effective in relation to its intended use.

24x7 Availability- Another advantage of applying for or renewing third-party motor insurance online is that the same is available 24x7, 365 days a year on the online portal. None of the usual constraints as associated with the traditional offline methods, plays a part here.

Thus, as the axiom goes- Third-party motor liability insurance policy is the cake, and the option to pay this third-party car insurance premium online, the cherry on top of it.

Limitations- What isn’t Covered Under Third-Party Motor Insurance Policy:

Just as in the main car insurance policy, the standard third-party insurance isn’t applicable under certain circumstances. Listed below are some of these conditions-

  1. Accidental loss/damage/liability sustained outside the specified geographical area.
  2. Claims that arise out of any contractual liability.
  3. The usage of the car that is not in line with the commonly stipulated ‘Limitations as to Use’.
  4. The vehicle was being driven by someone who isn’t the owner or designated driver.
  5. Accidental loss/damage incurred by the third party that has resulted from any consequential loss.
  6. Liability, directly or indirectly caused by radioactive contamination or nuclear weapons.
  7. Loss, damage and/or liability caused by war, invasion and other warlike operations.

The above list details the most common exceptions. For a comprehensive list, check your policy documents.

Claim Settlement for Third-Party Car Insurance:

When there is an accident, both parties are likely to have third-party insurance cover since this is mandatory in India. If a car owner is involved in an accident without any insurance, it could turn out to be a costly mistake even if he or she is not at fault. A comprehensive car insurance policy entitles you to make a claim for the damages caused to you and the third party. If you only have third-party cover, you cannot make a claim for the damages caused to you during an accident. If you are the victim of an accident, you can file for third-party insurance from the insurer of the vehicle that caused the damage. The claim process usually takes the following course.

  • Reporting the incident to the police and getting a charge sheet for the accident
  • Approaching the Motor Accident Claims Tribunal and filing a case
  • Fixing liability after hearing both sides and examining the available evidence

If the tribunal rules in your favour, you get compensated for the damages sustained in the accident. Making a claim after an accident is a complex process that requires some level of expertise. If you are not able to approach the tribunal on your own, you can get the help of a qualified lawyer to plead your case.

Important Considerations When Making a Third-Party Car Insurance Claim:

There are certain factors that every claimant must consider before filing for compensation under third-party insurance. They are as follows:

  • In an accident, the victim must establish negligence by the opposition party. Hence, it is important to gather evidence before filing for the claim.
  • In order to make a third-party claim, the accident must be reported immediately to the police and the insurance company.
  • A favourable ruling does not entitle a claimant to get the full amount of settlement that is filed in the claim. The court will decide the right amount suitable for compensation.
  • Minor damages to the vehicle can be settled out-of-court as the entire process of filing for a claim is cumbersome and complex. It is better to go to the tribunal only during the case of serious vehicle damage, disability, or death.
  • In the case of vehicle damage, the claimant must ensure that the claim is significant. It is not a good idea to forfeit the accrued no claim bonus for minor damages that can be easily fixed.
  • Third-party claim can also be made for injuries and income lost during the period of disability following the accident.
  • Most insurers subrogate the claim against another insurer only during the case of death or disability. Subrogation is the process through which the insurance company of one party claims reimbursement from the insurance company of the other party for the damages paid.

In Conclusion- In these times of chaotic hurry, unrelenting traffic and a desperate need to speed past, accidents and on-road damage to your vehicle is a common problem. Ensure peace of mind, by investing in a complete protection plan for your cherished set of wheels. With a good third-party motor liability insurance policy, either stand-alone or as part of a comprehensive car insurance package, drive away into the sunset with gusto.

Third-Party Motor Insurance FAQs:

  1. Can I skip the purchase of third-party motor insurance? I really am a good driver.

    No. Third-party motor insurance is a compulsory component of your motor insurance policy as mandated by the Indian Motor Vehicles Act, 1988. Also, the fact that you are a good driver doesn’t negate the fact that your vehicle (and you) can be the victims of an accident that was initiated by another vehicle. In such a scenario, you will be thankful that the offending driver is insured with the third-party motor insurance component that you can raise a claim on.

  2. What is a third-party car insurance policy actually?

    In simple terms, when your vehicle is the cause of an accident that resulted in the injury/death/damage to third-party property, then the offended party can raise a claim for damages that will be satisfied by your third-party car insurance policy. In this exchange, you will not be getting any monetary benefits.

  3. What is the maximum compensation offered as part of this policy?

    In case of bodily injury or death, there isn’t a specific ceiling with regards to the compensation amount. However, in case of damage to third-party property, the insurance company will only account for a maximum of Rs.7.5 lakhs.

  4. I had a bad accident this morning and I wish to raise a claim on the third-party insurance policy. How much time do I have to raise this claim?

    In simple terms, there is some breathing space- but quicker is always better. You must start by filing a case with the Motor Accidents Case Tribunal within a span of 60 days from the unfortunate accident. However, there have been instances where the courts have acted upon claims that were registered a year or so from the accident date.

  5. What documents must I submit when raising a third-party car insurance claim?

    The documents to be submitted include, copies of FIR (First Information Report) as registered by the local police station, proof relating to the expenses being claimed and report from the surveyor (if damage to property is involved).

  6. What happens if I am caught driving without a valid third-party liability insurance policy?

    As per the Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Bill 2016 that was approved by the Lok Sabha, a person driving without a valid insurance policy can be charged a fine of Rs.2,000. This is a 100% increase in the penalty from the existing charge.

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