Ready to buy a new car or take out insurance? We know that the terms that cross your path during your research are not always simply formulated. That is why we guide you through this glossary.
Civil liability insurance
This is also called the BA insurance and is absolutely mandatory in our country. This compensates the material damage and physical injuries of victims of an accident. If you do not have this car insurance, you are not allowed on the Belgian roads. If you then cause an accident, your own physical injuries and other costs are not covered.
Bonus Malus Ladder
This is perhaps a term that you have heard before, but what does it mean exactly? Well, for car insurance, a reward system is used. This means that insured parties who do not cause any damage will build up claim-free years. Based on how many years you build up, you have to pay less to your insurer. That discount is built up in steps, hence the name ‘bonus-malus ladder’. Per x number of claim-free years, you can go down a step and your premium drops. Although the bonus-malus system in Belgium is no longer mandatory since 2004, many insurers still use it.
Some insurers cover both the damage to other road users and the damage to your own vehicle if you are replaced by a PDO driver. If you have a glass too much, it is therefore a good thing to have someone else – sober, admittedly – drive home with your car. Not all BA insurances have a BOB guarantee.
This abbreviation stands for “Vehicle Registration Service”. This is the government department that manages the number plates and registration certificates. Here you can also find personalized number plates, transit plates, trader and test drive plates – in short, everything that has to do with number plates.
Franchise or exemption
This is the amount that you have to pay yourself when your insurer pays compensation for an accident. Don’t worry, because this amount is fixed in advance in the insurance contract. This amount can either be fixed and therefore fixed, or in proportion to the total damage costs.
Economic total loss
When your car is declared economically total loss, this means that the damage is so great that your repair cost is higher than the value of your car. So more has to be invested to repair your car than it is still worth. Suppose your car is fifteen years old and someone else bumps into it, chances are that your car will be declared economically total loss . If you want to have it repaired, you will have to pay the difference in relation to the value itself.
Technical total loss
Unlike when your car is declared an economic total loss, this is about damage that can no longer be repaired. Here we are talking about extreme cases, such as fire damage or a highly deformed body.
The green card is a document that states that you are insured. When a police check asks for your vehicle documents, you normally bring up a folder containing the green card. This and the test certificate are the most important car documents, so make sure you have them with you in your car at all times.
If you take out comprehensive insurance, you are always insured in the event of an accident – even if you caused it yourself. It even covers the material damage to your own car, even if no third party is involved. The coverage is more or less extended depending on the insurance contract.