Young drivers struggle to get insured after major broker stops accepting under-21s

Young drivers are finding it more difficult to get on the road for the first time, as insurance companies have increased prices or stopped providing cover altogether.

One of the Channel Islands' major brokers, Ross Gower, has even started writing to customers under the age of 21 informing them their existing policies will be cancelled.

The company said it is due to a change in the law in Gibraltar, where one of its insurance providers is based.

One customer received a letter saying: "We are sorry to tell you that your current insurer is no longer able to offer motor insurance in the Channel Islands. We do not have access to any alternative insurers."

Insurance companies traditionally treated under-21s as "young drivers", but ITV News understands that several providers have now extended that to under-25s, meaning drivers are having to pay higher premiums for longer.

As fewer companies on-island are willing to insure young drivers, many are now having to look to providers in the UK - where car insurance can cost thousands.

Guernsey takeaway owner Mim Sarre relies on students to help out delivering orders during the busy summer months, but she says she is no longer able to insure young drivers:

"Unfortunately this year when my policy came up for renewal in June, Islands Insurance turned round and said 'we're not renewing your policy any more for under 25 drivers', which of course knocks out six of my drivers, which is a big impact."

Only 7% of drivers across the UK are between the ages of 17 and 24 - and yet statistics show that young drivers are responsible nearly one in four fatal accidents, so insurance premiums are priced to reflect that.

Driving instructor Dave Sheppard has been teaching people to drive for 15 years. He says insurance has always been expensive, especially for those in their late teens and early 20s:

"I don't think there's so many learning to drive now as there used to be, as youngsters.

"We get a lot of older students now that have come back from England and want to learn to drive. I've got them in their 20s and 30s - they want to get on the road and they need it for their job."

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