The owner of a car or other motor vehicle (collectively referred to here simply as a ‘car’) is obliged to take out motor vehicle insurance (motorrijtuigenverzekering) to cover liabilities incurred while driving a car.
The insurance for your car is divided into three categories:
- Personal liability (wettelijke aansprakelijkheid, WA).
The WA insurance covers costs from damages made by your car to others (third parties). This category does not cover any damage to your car or your possessions. This form of liability insurance is compulsory if you own a car which is registered in the Netherlands.
- Restricted comprehensive coverage (wettelijke aansprakelijkheid + mini-casco)
This is the same third-party liability insurance as described above, but this insurance package includes coverage for damages that are not under your control, or are not your fault. This includes fire, explosions, theft and storm damage.
- Comprehensive coverage (wettelijke aansprakelijkheid + casco)
This is third-party liability insurance, plus coverage for your car if any damages occur, including damages that you cause yourself – example resulting from collisions or parking mistakes.
Please note: the owner of the car will be held responsible for damages caused by his car, regardless of whether he is or is not actually behind the wheel when the damage occurs.
Dutch car insurances offer a no-claims premium discount (no claim-korting). If you own a car and do no claim damages, you get a discount on your car insurance. On some occasions, it might be even smarter not to claim liability or damages, but instead to pay the expenses yourself, as the discount received is more profitable. This no-claims bonus increases the longer you drive without a claim, rising up to 70% of your policy.
In the event of an accident, each person involved must fill in a claim report and send it to their respective insurance company. Dutch insurance companies provide a European Accident Statement form, which is the same for all companies, and drivers are advised to keep a form in the vehicle at all times. The insurance documents must be carried in the car.