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    Jan 24, 2014

    Motor insurance tailored for seniors

    THE first motor-insurance policy tailored for drivers aged 65 and above was launched yesterday, following calls from the Monetary Authority of Singapore for motor insurers to re-examine the way they treat older drivers.

    Senior drivers have long faced the challenge of high insurance premiums, with some even finding it hard to secure coverage after they hit 65.

    But with AA Senior Motor Plus, such drivers need not worry about rising premiums and high excess charges, as these would remain unchanged till the age of 75.

    After that, the charges will be reassessed - and adjustments are not necessarily upwards.

    The new motor-insurance policy is a collaboration between the Automobile Association of Singapore (AA) and Liberty Insurance.

    Mr Bernard Tay, president of the AA, said the association has been pushing for such an insurance policy for the last three years. The AA represents 83,000 motorists, of which 14 per cent are over 65.

    Mr Tay said senior drivers are often perceived by motor insurers as being accident-prone because of factors such as having slower reflexes and impaired vision.

    However, he noted: "(Insurers) quite often forget that these mature drivers come with many years of experience, are likely to be emotionally stable, and less reckless and aggressive on the road, with a lower tendency to speed or take unnecessary risk."

    Research by Liberty Insurance in countries like the United States and Brazil found that such drivers tend to drive during off-peak hours, in the day (when visibility is better), and avoid bad weather.

    Currently, insurance providers such as DBS and NTUC Income offer motor insurance for drivers above 65. At Aviva and, renewal of policies for those above 70 are considered on a case-by-case basis.

    Retiree Richard Yue, 67, said he finds the new insurance policy assuring. "At least I'm being covered as I grow older," he said.