Insurance Invalidations

What is an invalidation?

If your insurance becomes invalidated it means it will no longer covers what it was meant to cover. Although a lot of people will associate insurance with homes, cars and businesses, there are also some types of insurance that young adults take out on a regular basis. Here are some ways travel insurance and mobile phone insurance can be invalidated:


1 Not mentioning a pre-existing condition to your insurer – broken your arm in the last few months and heading out on a skiing trip? If it breaks again and your insurer finds out you could be the one paying the medical bills!

2 Doing non-covered adventurous sports – check what you’re covered for. Most insurers will cover activities like banana boating or scuba diving with a qualified instructor, but any activities not covered on an insurers list might require a separate insurance policy.

3 Not having proof of theft – Make sure you have a receipt, instruction manual or photo of an expensive item before taking it away. Also make sure if something is stolen that you have a police report – if you don’t then its highly likely your insurers will send you packing when you try to claim. Finally – some insurers insist on notifying them within 24 hours of items being stolen.

4 Visiting somewhere you probably shouldn’t –  it’s unlikely that anyone will insure a sunshine break in Helmand – make sure you check the World Health Organisation and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office before you book your flights.

5 Being drunk – Most insurers have an ‘alcohol exclusion’ clause – this means if there is a very strong connection between being drunk and the circumstances of the claim, this will probably be invoked.


Most mobile phone companies will not cover you for the following:

1 Carelessness – although all breaks/ losses contain a degree of carelessness try not to make your explanation for a broken phone too ridiculous. Additionally if you have multiple breaks over a short space of time this clause may be activated

2 Theft of your phone if left unattended – if you leave your phone in a car or room unattended and its taken then you’ll have a tough time getting it insured. Interestingly this also applies if someone else is looking after your phone when it is lost or broken.

3 Water damage – your decision to push your fully clothed friend into a pool this summer might be a very expensive one

              Additionally some insurers state the following will invalidate your insurance

4 Time – If you do not report the theft within 24 hours

5 Who? – If someone in your immediate family caused the malicious damage –  be kind to your brothers and sisters!


1 Changes to car – if you’re thinking of ‘pimping your ride’ e.g. adding tinted windows, a body kit or even new suspension you must let your insurer know.

2 Driving penalties – if you receive any convictions for driving offenses or points on your licence you must let your insurer know.

3 Inaccurate information – insuring the vehicle in someone else’s name despite being the main driver OR saying the car is ‘for personal use only’ and then using it for business.

4 Protecting your car – leaving the keys in the    ignition while you pay for petrol is an example. Similarly, if you leave it unlocked in a car park, its more likely to be stolen and your insurer could refuse to pay out.

5 Using your phone – it is now illegal to use    your phone whilst driving and if there is evidence of phone use before an accident it will invalidate your claim.

6 Driving without an MOT – this is a compulsory annual test for safety and exhaust emissions for your car. The maximum cost for an MOT is around £50 – much cheaper than paying for a totalled car!

7 Not giving your full attention – ignoring signs such as flood warning signs and road closed signs


1 Leaving windows open or not locking windows where locks are fitted – if a burglar is able to gain unforced entry into your home most insurers will not pay out

2 Incorrect descriptions –  if you do not correctly list the locations or your locks when filling in application form

3 If your burglar alarm is not activated – make sure you set it correctly before you leave your house!

4 Time – if the theft is not reported within 24 hours you will find it very difficult to claim anything back

5 Updates – Failing to notify your insurer that builders are on site would lead to an invalidation. Further, if the tools they are using are not secured and then used to break into your home this would cause an issue.

6 Unoccupied – leaving your hosue alone for more than 30 consecutive days would lead to an invalidation


7 Social media – If you post on social media that your home will be unmanned during the period you are away this could also put you in hot water!


When taking a policy out

  • Don’t just opt for the cheapes
  • Always read the small print
  • Keep receipt
  • Provide as much information as you can
  • Don’t post your holiday dates on social media

When making a claim

  • Don’t exaggerate or tell lies
  • Act quickly
  • Collect evidence
  • Always follow your insurer’s protocol
  • Chase it up