What to do if your car is stolen
Having your car stolen can be an upsetting time, not only because of the financial implications but also because of the emotional attachments people have to their vehicles.
However, to increase an individual's chances of recovering their vehicle and to ensure their insurance claim goes through without a hitch, it is important they do not let emotions take over and follow the right procedure upon discovering their car has been stolen.
The police will need to take a range of details, so motorists should have to hand the registration number of their car, its make, model and colour. Drivers will then be given a crime reference number, which in the event of an insurance claim will be needed and it will also enable them to successfully apply for a refund on their tax disc.
Next, motorists should contact their insurance company. If the car is not recovered - depending on the level of insurance taken out and the circumstances of the theft - policy holders may qualify for a payout and courtesy car while a new vehicle is being found.
If this happens, although the vehicle has not been sold they will still need to fill out the notification of sale or transfer part of the car's registration document and send it back to the DVLA.
Police normally advise motorists to hold off applying for a refund of their car tax for a few days, as many vehicles are recovered a few days after they have been stolen.
For those with a personalised registration number plate, life can be more difficult - but normally owners can reclaim the registration plate if the car has not been found after 12 months.
However, certain criteria must be met, such as the vehicle must have had a current MOT at the time of theft, as well as a tax disc.
Drivers should also make a note of the belongings they had in their car at the time of theft, as they may be able to claim for these items. Furthermore, if the car is returned but there has been damage to rugs or furniture inside the vehicle, drivers may also be able to claim for these damages if they have fully comprehensive insurance policies.
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