seven million people have ‘unspent’ convictions in the UK and about two-thirds are unaware it voids their insurance cover.
Even minor offences like fare dodging take five years to become ‘spent’, while some offences must always be declared.
Dan Norris, director of Gothic Insurance which specialises in insurance for offenders, said: “Most criminal convictions will result in claims being denied and cover cancelled.
“The contract is void even if the risk is immaterial. High Street insurers get out of things any way they can.”
Offenders typically pay more and have higher excesses, typically £250. But valid insurance was vital.
He said: “If you have a catastrophe and you really need insurance, that’s when it will fail you.
“You might get away with making a small claim, but have a disaster like a flood, fire or subsidence and they’ll delve into your circumstances.”
Six policy killers:
n Criminal conviction;
n Change of job - say from pen pusher to security guard;
n Car modifications;
n Speeding fine;
n Using car for business;
Mr Norris said: “The insurance contract is based on the information given when the policy starts.”