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07/03/19 Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport - Clarification on the need for Green Cards

Green Cards are documents which act as proof of motor insurance when travelling internationally.  In the case of a no-deal Brexit, the UK, including Northern Ireland, will no longer be party to the Motor Insurance Directive. This means that a Green Card will be required to demonstrate to the authorities in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK that valid motor insurance cover is in place. 


The Motor Insurers’ Bureau of Ireland (MIBI) has advised that Green Cards will need to be carried by motorists in Irish registered vehicles travelling to the UK, including to Northern Ireland.  The MIBI is the body responsible for the Green Card system in Ireland.


Insurers and insurance brokers have advised that they are beginning to issue Green Cards to policyholders from March 2019 and are encouraging anyone who will need to drive in Northern Ireland or other parts of the UK in the days immediately after Brexit to begin contacting their insurance companies or insurance brokers.  MIBI has indicated that 1 million Green Cards have now been sent to insurance companies and brokers.


The Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Shane Ross, stated that “This is not something that the Government wants to see, rather it is another consequence of a decision by the UK people. As part of its contingency planning, the Government has raised this matter directly with the European Commission seeking agreement from it to set a date from which green cards would not be required as is possible under the EU’s Motor Insurance Directive. The Commission has not given agreement to date and the Government continues to pursue the matter with it.”


Minister Ross went on to say that the preparation by MIBI and insurers is an example of ‘prudent advance planning ‘ in preparing for a possible no-deal Brexit.


The Department has requested, and continues to do so, that the EU Commission set a date where green cards would not be required.

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