Do you need to be insured to supervise a learner driver?
The research shows that learners who practice for an additional 22 hours with a friend or family member helps them to increase their chances of passing their driving test. Of course, as well as more experience, it’s a cheap way of improving driving skills before the big test day.
For the ‘supervisors’, it’s a chance to help a friend or family member out, but it is a role that needs to be taken seriously, as there are rules to follow.
What are the rules for supervising a learner driver?
The rules are pretty simple: you must be over 21, have had a full driving license for 3 years and – of course – be qualified in driving the type of vehicle the learner is driving.
It is illegal for you – as supervisor – to use a mobile phone whilst supervising the learner driver. Basically, you shouldn’t do anything you shouldn’t do whilst driving yourself. If caught flouting the rules, it’s the learner who suffers, with a fine of up to £1,000 and 6 points on their provisional license. In other words, taking a test would be pointless!
What should you do about insurance?
There is specialist learner driver insurance that can include a supervisor. Likewise, your own insurance policy may cover other drivers, but there are often age restrictions in place – always check first whichever way you believe you are insured.
How should you prepare for supervising a learner?
As well as the aforementioned rules, don’t forget the eyesight requirements for you both. In good light, drivers must be able to read a vehicle number plate from 20 metres. If you or the learner hasn’t already, the best preparation is to go to an optician before their first lesson, especially if it has been a while.
Ensure that the car being used is safe condition – tyres, brakes, lights, wipers and mirrors are the obvious starting point.
The car must be registered, taxed and MOT’d. Given they will be asked to demonstrate this knowledge during their test, try doing a pre-drive check with your learner before you go out, so that they know how to keep the car in fine fettle.
Whenever the learner is driving, you must also ensure that L Plates (or D Plates in Wales) are shown on the front and rear of the car. Remember to remove them after each practice drive – it’s the law.
Find out more about supervising by reading our dedicated article - Supervising a Learner Driver: What You Need to Know.