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Driving a UK car in Germany for 6 months

Driving a UK car in Germany for 6 months

Old Jul 28th 2019, 12:26 pm
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Default Driving a UK car in Germany for 6 months

Hello, I will be doing an internship at a German company for 6 months and want to take my car there. It seems that British companies can't cover me for this period of stay. Is there a way to insure with a German company a UK based car?

Thanks
Tomas
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Old Jul 28th 2019, 3:09 pm
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Default Re: Driving a UK car in Germany for 6 months

Originally Posted by tomaspkr View Post
Hello, I will be doing an internship at a German company for 6 months and want to take my car there. It seems that British companies can't cover me for this period of stay. Is there a way to insure with a German company a UK based car?

Thanks
Tomas
Hi Tomas, welcome to BE.

This a bit worrying, I hope it's not a case of "things about to come (maybe)".

Back in the '80s I drove my UK plated car in several European countries whilst living in Germany and Switzerland for several years, no problem at all with the UK insurance company.

I take it that you have tried other UK insurance companies?
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Old Jul 28th 2019, 11:56 pm
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Default Re: Driving a UK car in Germany for 6 months

Most UK insurers will only insure you for up to 90 days at a time in the rest of the EU. Are you planning on driving back to the UK during your internship? Will you actually require a car to commute or will it simply be a nice thing to have?
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Old Jul 29th 2019, 5:45 am
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Default Re: Driving a UK car in Germany for 6 months

Originally Posted by BuckinghamshireBoy View Post
Hi Tomas, welcome to BE.

This a bit worrying, I hope it's not a case of "things about to come (maybe)".

Back in the '80s I drove my UK plated car in several European countries whilst living in Germany and Switzerland for several years, no problem at all with the UK insurance company.

I take it that you have tried other UK insurance companies?
i managed to get insurance for the first 3 months, but not sure what will happen afterwards. Maybe a British company will be able to insure me while I am abroad?
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Old Jul 29th 2019, 5:48 am
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Default Re: Driving a UK car in Germany for 6 months

Originally Posted by BritInParis View Post
Most UK insurers will only insure you for up to 90 days at a time in the rest of the EU. Are you planning on driving back to the UK during your internship? Will you actually require a car to commute or will it simply be a nice thing to have?
Thanks for the reply. Yes i got 90 days confirmed by the insurer. Though i got charged £86 which feels a bit scammy, thought it's supposed to be included in the insurance already. I will use the car every or every second weekend for leisure sightseeing. Otherwise i will just use my bike.
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Old Jul 29th 2019, 5:50 am
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Default Re: Driving a UK car in Germany for 6 months

Originally Posted by BritInParis View Post
Most UK insurers will only insure you for up to 90 days at a time in the rest of the EU. Are you planning on driving back to the UK during your internship? Will you actually require a car to commute or will it simply be a nice thing to have?
Also my worst case scenario in case I can't get insured again after 90 days is just to drive back home and leave the car there.
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Old Jul 29th 2019, 7:59 am
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Default Re: Driving a UK car in Germany for 6 months

A quick google search found this...

https://www.stuartcollins.com/quote/

Might be useful, might not be.. have a look.
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Old Jul 29th 2019, 8:25 am
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Default Re: Driving a UK car in Germany for 6 months

Originally Posted by Jake.White View Post
A quick google search found this...
Might be useful, might not be.. have a look.
Yes it might, thanks!
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Old Jul 29th 2019, 2:58 pm
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Default Re: Driving a UK car in Germany for 6 months

The insurance issue is really secondary. The primary question is whether you need to re-register your car in Germany, assuming that you will be officially resident there.

According to this page, you do:

europa.eu/youreurope/citizens/vehicles/registration/registration-abroad//germany/index_en.htm

If I'm not mistaken, students used to be exempt from this rule, but I'm not sure whether an internship would qualify you as a student, and in any case, the page explicitly says that students are not exempt.

Insuring a German-registered car is of course not a problem, but re-registering it (and back) is almost certainly not worth the hassle for 6 months.

Also consider hiring a car for occasional weekend use, or buying a cheap runabout in Germany and selling it again when you leave.
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Old Jul 29th 2019, 3:05 pm
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Default Re: Driving a UK car in Germany for 6 months

That's useful information, thank you. However the website states

"As an EU national moving to Germany you can use your vehicle here while it is still registered in your previous home country. You can use it for 1 year, as long as the vehicle's location is not established in Germany."

My vehicle will be tied to my home address while I am away so technically I should be exempt. I will be there only for 6 months max and 3 months if required.
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Old Jul 29th 2019, 5:21 pm
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Default Re: Driving a UK car in Germany for 6 months

Originally Posted by tomaspkr View Post
That's useful information, thank you. However the website states

"As an EU national moving to Germany you can use your vehicle here while it is still registered in your previous home country. You can use it for 1 year, as long as the vehicle's location is not established in Germany."
Precisely - it hinges on the interpretation of whether the vehicle's location is established in Germany.

The 1-year provision isn't the definition of "temporary"; it's an absolute limit, not a stay of grace. The temporary aspect is defined by the nature of your stay. If the German authorities conclude that you have moved to Germany, they will expect you to re-register the vehicle. (The worst that is likely to happen though is that you'll be charged German car tax.)

Originally Posted by tomaspkr View Post
My vehicle will be tied to my home address while I am away so technically I should be exempt.
And the authorities could well agree with you and point out that the vehicle is indeed tied to your "home address" - in Germany.

I don't want to scaremonger, but I'd advise you to gather evidence that your "main home" is still in the UK and that you have firm plans to return after 3/6 months (for example, proof that you still have accommodation there).

And, of course, if you're offered a permanent position at the end of your internship, you will then have to re-register the car immediately.

Also, if a disorderly Brexit occurs before you move, the UK will be a third country, in which case the rules regarding registering your car are different again. We live in interesting times...
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