Insurance cover misunderstanding

The consumer’s issue:

When discussing the purchase of my one-year-old ’18-plate hatchback, I was told that it came with seven days’ complimentary Driveaway insurance cover. However, it was only by chance that I came across a document that showed the policy was valid for just five days, leaving me in a rush to arrange alternative insurance. To resolve my complaint, I am looking for the business to apologise for providing misleading information, as well as for the avoidable distress and inconvenience caused by this matter.”  

The accredited business’ response:

  • We did not inform the consumer that the complimentary Driveaway insurance was valid for a seven-day period, and no incorrect information was provided.
  • In fact, to arrange the insurance, the customer was given a leaflet that explained how they could obtain short-term cover.
  • Unfortunately, it appears that there was a simple misunderstanding from the customer’s perspective in relation to the Driveaway insurance.
  • We have noted the consumer’s comments, and we will learn from them. We also apologise for any inconvenience or discomfort experienced.
  • Nonetheless, we do not consider we are at fault in this matter, and that fault merits any form of resolution.

The adjudication outcome:

  • The Motor Ombudsman adjudicator reviewed the evidence, and could not see anything that suggested the consumer had been misinformed about the duration of the complimentary Driveaway insurance cover.
  • There was also no evidence that clearly showed the advice provided to the customer during the vehicle handover.
  • The adjudicator also agreed that it wasn’t unusual for the consumer to have to arrange their own complimentary insurance cover, due to declarations that are needed when taking out a policy.
  • Therefore, while the adjudicator was satisfied that the consumer genuinely believed that their complimentary insurance would last longer, he was unable to conclude this misunderstanding was due to any shortcoming in the advice provided by the business.
  • Whilst the adjudicator was sympathetic to the consumer’s situation, he could not rule in their favour.


  • Neither party objected to the adjudicator’s conclusions, and the case was closed.