Are you or your children one of many students heading to university in the UK this year? If you have a car and are looking to take it to your new home or parking in a new city, make sure you understand the steps to take should your car be stolen while on a car finance plan.
Below, Lucy Sherliker, head of customer at Zuto car finance explains what to do if your car is stolen and what is involved if you still owe money on a car finance agreement.
Call the police
Lucy says: “First things first, don’t panic! If you suspect your car has been stolen, contact the police using the 101 non-emergency number. Be ready to share basic details about the stolen car, such as the registration number, make, model and colour. If there are any modifications on the car that could help it be identified, share details of this too.
“Following this, the police will give you a crime reference number, which you should note as you will need to provide this to your car finance and insurance companies. The police will inform DVLA that your car has been subject to theft, so don’t worry about this step.”
Call your insurance company
Lucy explains: “Once the stolen car has been reported to police, you should contact your insurance company to begin dealing with your claim.”
If you are on a car finance plan, contact your lender
Lucy adds: “After the police and insurance companies are aware of the crime, if your car is currently on a car finance plan, it’s important to let your lender know as soon as possible. As car finance is secured against the vehicle, when you make the lender aware, they will register a stolen marker against the car on a central database and guide you through the next steps.
“While waiting for the insurance company to settle your claim, you must keep paying your finance instalments as usual. If your car is unfortunately not recovered and returned to you, you must pay off the remaining balance on your PCP or HP finance using the insurance payout amount. Following this, your agreement is finished, and you’re free to sort out a new plan for a new vehicle.”
Update the DVLA
Lucy says: “While the police will initially contact the DVLA to inform them of the theft, you must let them know when your stolen vehicle claim has been settled. You do this by filling in the V5C/3 part of your V5C registration form, registered as a ‘notification of sale or transfer’.
“You must also send the rest of your V5C to your insurer.”