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car insurance must be business?

(17 Posts)
damsonjammy Thu 09-Jun-11 14:09:59

foster carers in eats lancs have been told that thier car insurance must be business insurance.
i have a mobility car as i am disabled and the mobiltity people have said they will not provide business insurance.
i have told my sw who has said without this level of insurance we cannot use our car for travel to contact etc.
when i explained that the company are not able to provide business insurance she told me that i would have to pay for taxis instead.
we have contact 4 times a week, 30 miles round trip. this is going to cost a fortune which i know they will reimburse but as mentioned in another thread i have started, they are not paying travel expenses for some reason.
what do i do?

p99gmb Thu 09-Jun-11 15:24:18

I think maybe it depends on who your insurance is with as to whether it needs to be 'business'...

We are with Direct Line, and phoned them to inform them and have our "occupation" stated on the policy - and equally for Home Insurance too - but where told (and got it in writing) that the children are considered 'part of the family' and therefore we are covered in transporting them to wherever... no increase in premiums....

Our SSW didn't even want to see confirmation of this - like she said, well, if we can't trust you to do this....!!!!

maypole1 Thu 09-Jun-11 16:21:47

I would call fostering net work and get the foster guidelines on this.

Because cabs are not very practical and if the parents is a no show you need to get their quickly to pick them up not be waiting on bobs cabs

Have you spoke to other carers in you area how are they getting on with this issue

shaz298 Thu 09-Jun-11 16:58:23

I have business insurance on a Motability car xx

scarlettsmummy2 Thu 09-Jun-11 17:03:14

I am a foster carer and don't have business insurance?? is it necessary everywhere?

shaz298 Thu 09-Jun-11 17:22:58


I think they do like you to have it. Update on Motability though. I just rang to confirm. I have business insurance anyway for something else so not a huge problem.

Damsonjammy is right that they won't issue business insurance specifically for fostering. However if you ring this number 08450727151, they can issue you with a letter stating that it is not required as any foster child would be classed as a member of your family ( just as they should be IMO).

Hope that helps. xx

bottersnike Fri 10-Jun-11 11:11:12

I called our insurer about this week, and she said it doesn't matter whether we are classed as employed or self-employed, as the policy is exactly the same.
So it may depend on your insurer as to whether they class foster care as business or not.

shaz298 Fri 10-Jun-11 12:07:56

Don't think the problem is with the insurer per-se. It seems to be the LA demanding business insurance......

bottersnike Fri 10-Jun-11 12:49:22

but if the insurer will cover the car when it's used for fostering without re-quoting for business cover, then the LA shouldn't have an issue, unless they're just following policy for the sake of it... smile

shaz298 Fri 10-Jun-11 13:09:05

I think they are probably following policy..........policy will state 'must have business insurance' and so they will try and implements it. That's why if you have a motability car it'd be worth phoning the number and getting a letter.


damsonjammy Fri 10-Jun-11 16:37:19

after having spoken to several other carers in my area they have all been told the same thing. without business insurance they cannot use their car for fostering.
when i explained to the la that we are not self employed they became annoyed!

p99gmb Fri 10-Jun-11 17:28:19

eh? I don't understand... I am with an LA and I am certainly 'self employed'..

you should be registered with HMRC for tax & NI purposes too

Although we receive money from the LA - its not like we get a payslip, benefits, a pay number etc (paid sick leave lol) and so I do view myself as self employed...

shaz298 Fri 10-Jun-11 17:38:57

I agree with P99, you are legally self employed, even if your 'earnings' after allowances etc mean you don't have to pay tax.

You should definitely be registered self employed for Tax and NI ( if you earn only a small amount you can get exepmption from NI contributions. xx

p99gmb Fri 10-Jun-11 18:52:54

yes, but I'd be very careful about applying for the exemption on NI's.. all you get is the bare minimum contribution to your state pension if you do that - and it excludes you from some other benefits

at something like £2.40 a week for self employed people, its defo worth paying in my (humble) opinion

shaz298 Fri 10-Jun-11 19:45:34

Sorry didn't realise, but I know because I get carer's allowance my NI contributions are paid anyway. And if you have young child you also get them paid for you. .......which is why I applied for the exemption ( We're not actually fostering yet though. Still waiting on that phone call smile )

fostermumtomany Mon 27-Jun-11 01:04:52

well according to my local tax office i am not self employed. i went in to enquire how to register as such and they asked the nature of the business, when i said i am fostering for my local authority they told me i am not self employed as i do not recieve a fee or a wage. i receive a basic allowance for a child in the childs name, i receive a remittance slip through the post every 2 weeks stating the allowance is for the child with her name stamped on it. when i showed this to the tax man he stated that as the money is stated as being for the child it is therefore not earnings and not taxable.
i have a letter from them confirming so.
as for ni contributions i get those anyway under the home responsibilites protection as i receive child benefit for my own kids.
hey damson, what you doing this weekend, if you come round i will show you the letter from the taxman and i will show you my letter from motability that says you dont need business insurance for fostering, as you know our la can be a bit stuffy but when i showed them my letter they just kind of shut up lol!
hey you can see little lady walking too now she took her first steps an hour after you left last time lol typical eh!

mumsiepie Mon 27-Jun-11 08:59:41

I am registered as self employed. I phoned the tax office and this is what they told me to do! Cos I am self employed I can claim working and child tax credit which helps enormously. Maybe depends who you speak to! Certainly suits me.

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